Friday, December 22, 2017

Maigret and the Funeral

I never go anywhere without a book but sometimes you can't take the book you're reading with you.  Case in point, I had to go a funeral last week and Philip Pullman's new book, The Book of Dust - La Belle Sauvage, is a big, fat hardcover and its size made it impossible to conceal and carry.  Georges Simenon is my go-to writer in cases like this - almost all of his paperbacks will neatly fit inside a suit pocket.  But titles and cover designs can be problematic when reading in public.

I couldn't take these because of his fascination with butts.

These two had titles which I felt inappropriate for a funeral.

I have some of the new Penguin translations but as nice as they are, you can see that they are now too big to fit inside a suit pocket.

In the end I narrowed it down to Maigret and the Calame Report,

Maigret and the Apparition, Maigret in Court

and The Hatter's Phantoms - which had the advantage of a neat cover and a Christmas setting for all the murders.

Before I could settle on a book, I found a photograph tucked away inside of Maigret in Court (which I really should be saving for jury duty):

I can't figure out if these people are relatives or not.  No one seems to know.  But the handwriting on the back of the photograph is familiar, so it seems possible they are.

In the end, I settled on Maigret and the Calame Report.  I didn't get much reading done that day after all, but this Maigret feels like it is going to be fantastic.