Sue Barnard - novelist, editor, poet, lady of letters. Believes that an immaculate house is a sign of a wasted life.
All work on this blog remains the copyright of the author. And, quite frankly, it's very noble of her to take the blame for it.
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Monday, 10 July 2017
SOYEZ LES BIENVENUS - an interview with Angela Wren and Jacques Forêt
Today I have not one but two special guests on my blog: my fellow-author Angela Wren, and Jacques Forêt, the hero of her two detective novels set in the Cévennes.
A Cévenol Village
Hello, Sue, and thanks for inviting me to your blog today.
I've brought my lead character, Jacques Forêt, with me and I hope
you don't mind if we take this opportunity to talk about his new case. I'm certainly very eager to hear what he has to say and I'm hoping
that he might, perhaps to give away one or two juicy pieces of info about what
has happened to him and Beth…
AW Welcome back
Jacques, and you’re not in uniform I see.
JF Yes, that’s right. I’ve left the rural gendarme service and
I now work in investigation in Mende.
AW So, just to recap
on your career thus far. You joined the police force in Paris as a
detective until you were injured whilst on duty and then came to Messandrierre
as a rural gendarme.
correct. It was after I recovered that I came here.
AW So why the further change?
JF I found I missed
the intricacies of handling major investigations along with the thrill of
solving such complex crimes. My last case in Paris involved breaking a
drugs cartel and I’ve worked on cases involving people trafficking. All
very testing with many and varied leads to follow. My current case means
that I can use those skills again.
AW And can you tell us
anything about your new case?
JF It’s very different
from my previous cases and involves commercial sabotage, but some the evidence
is pointing to other types of crime. The more I delve, the more complex
this case is becoming.
AW How interesting.
Any suspects yet or dead bodies?
JF It’s early days. I only picked up the
investigation a week ago, but there are a number of suspects that need to be
narrowed down. There are also some lines of enquiry that are leading me
to believe that there are other malpractices that need to be investigated,
which might mean there is fraud to be uncovered. There are no dead bodies
at the moment, but… if the evidence does lead me where I think it might, then
yes, someone might have the motive to commit such a serious crime.
Naturally I will do all I can to ensure that doesn’t happen.
Colours of the Cévennes
AW Of course.
Working in Mende, has that meant many changes for you here in the village of
JF Not really. I’m
still the Policeman from Paris to everyone living here and I still seem to be
the first person they come to when there’s trouble.Gendarme Thibault Clergue
has taken my post here in the gendarmerie. I don’t want to tread on his
toes so we work on things together when necessary.
AW Back working in
investigation, does that mean you’re working with Magistrate Bruno Pelletier
JF Not at the moment.
I do sometimes bump into Bruno in the city, but if my case develops as I think
it might, then I may need to involve him. And I will do that as
AW When we first met I
seem remember you saying that you would like to ‘have ‘someone to share your life
with.’ Those were your precise words, I think.
JF Ahh, I was
wondering when you would get around to that!
AW And you can tell us…
what? The Readers do need to know, Jacques.
JF I also
remember telling you that it was complicated. It still is… But I know
what I want… Beth just has to make the right decision for her. Moving to
another country requires a lot of consideration.
AW Are you saying that
JF Non! And
before you ask, I didn’t say that I was moving to England either. What I
am saying is that, if Beth and I are to move forward then we both need to
consider very carefully how we achieve that.
AW Well, you may no
longer wear uniform, Jacques, but you are ever the policeman!
AW And that
smile of yours tells me everything. Thank you, Jacques, for being here
You can read more about Jacques’ new case, the village and Beth in Merle, Book 2 in the Jacques Forêt mystery series. It was published by Crooked Cat Books on 5 July 2017.
Forêt, a former gendarme turned investigator, delves into the murky world of
commercial sabotage – a place where people lie and misrepresent, and where
information is traded and used as a threat.
The Vaux organisation is losing contracts and money, and Jacques
is asked to undertake an internal investigation. As he works through the
complexity of all the evidence, he finds more than he bargained for, and his
own life is threatened.
When a body of a woman is found, it appears to be suicide. But as
the investigation takes another turn, Jacques suspects there is more to
Who is behind it all…and why? Will Jacques find
the answer before another person ends up dead?