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Folly Du Jour (Joe Sandilands #7)

3.55  ·  Rating Details ·  515 Ratings  ·  55 Reviews
This book is the seventh in the Joe Sandilands murder mystery series. It is set in Folies Bergere, Paris, December 1926. Joe hurries to the assistance of an old friend who has been arrested for murder. In a cell of the Quai des Orfevres he meets with Sir George Jardine, still in the evening dress stained with the blood of the dead man. The only other witness, a blonde who ...more
Hardcover, 288 pages
Published September 27th 2007 by Constable & Robinson
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Oct 16, 2008 Nikki rated it really liked it
Shelves: mysteries, fiction
Joe Sandilands and Sir George Jardine are back, and they're in Paris. It's 1927, and numerous cultural icons of the time are present -- from Lindbergh to Josephine Baker to a young crime reporter named Simenon. Joe, in Paris for an Interpol conference, is brought in to help when Sir George, recently retired and thus no longer protected by diplomatic immunity, is found standing over the body of a fellow Englishman in a box at the theater where Baker is performing.

The corpse was that of a thoroug
Mary Ellen
May 16, 2014 Mary Ellen rated it it was ok
Shelves: mysteries
This mystery was OK, entertaining enough so that I really want to give it 2 1/2 stars.

I loved the Sandilands mysteries set in India, in large part for the "local color." This one set in Paris left me a bit cold.

Joe is a nice enough guy, but not all that interesting (though easy to be around after spending time with Ian Rutledge, Charles Todd's much more troubled WWI-vet-back-as-an-English-policeman). There were many references to a prior story involving Sandilands and two other prominent chara
Aug 29, 2016 Andrea rated it liked it
First one I've read in this series. Well written, nice plot twists and historically accurate. Worth reading when you want a quick, well written mystery. Nothing sloppy and a bit of depth to the characters.
Val Sanford
Ms. Josephine Baker makes a grand appearance, as does Louis Armstrong and the music of the jazz age in Paris. Joe is caught up in a plot-twisting murder investigation while in Paris on a Scotland Yard mission. The French police believe they have their man, but Joe knows better and sets out to find and convict the culprit. This book left me confused at times; the plot twists were okay but the dialogue was overplayed and stiff. I never really got ahead of Joe, except for the very last revelation o ...more
Rhonda Pickens
Best yet!

I love this series, particularly its sense of time and place. This one is especially well done. Though I loved when Sandilands was in India, the author did an amazing job of recreating Paris in the roaring twenties! I highly recommend searching for Josephine Baker on youtube where you can see actual film of her descending into the audience in an egg then dancing the charleston - exactly as described in the book! One other clever little touch: Georges Simenon, author of the Maigret books
Sep 13, 2014 Dorothy rated it liked it
This is my first Barbara Cleverly and I will be reading more!

I have to admit, I didn't warm to her writing style at first (though I can't put my finger on why), but the plot was well contrived and Joe made a good,if uncomplicated, hero. She had obviously done her research on Paris in the 20's so the sense of place was terrific.

I usually hate it when authors shoehorn famous people into their fiction, but in this instance I loved the artful and not over-done inclusion of Josephine Baker and her lo
Jul 19, 2016 Leslie rated it it was amazing
Love this! Fun murder mystery
Alice Harbin
Apr 23, 2015 Alice Harbin rated it it was amazing
A great British mystery that takes place just after WWI. It started off slowly, gradually building. The plot is complex and I could only guess at the culprit a bit before the jig was up. There is some gore and several killings, but these are told in a careful way. One of the main characters bares my name and she is most interesting!
I even got up a map of Paris on my computer so I could actually see where the ;lot was developing. I looked up some French words to get a better flavor of the conver
FOLLY DU JOUR (Licensed Investigator-Joe Sandilands-Paris-1927) – VG
Cleverly, Barbara – 7th in series
Constable, 2007, UK Hardcover – ISBN: 9781845295288
First Sentence: Harland C. White of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania shuffled resentfully after his wife, May, through the Egyptian rooms in the Louvre museum.
*** It is Paris, 1927, Lucky Lindburgh has just landed and Josephine Baker and American Jazz has taken Paris by storm. Commander Joe Sandilands has come to Paris in aid of his friend, Sir George Ja
This was another good read but the end was tedious. I couldn't put it down through 4/5 of the book and I couldn't wait to finish reading the last 1/5 because I felt bogged down in the plot. There were some areas that were sketchy to me -- understandable, but not fleshed out enough. That said, it was another feather in Cleverly's cap -- and certainly worth its place in the order of her series. I do like the way that she brings back characters from previous novels.
Oct 13, 2010 Kim rated it liked it
Shelves: 2010booksread
An ok mystery, but kinda disappointing after the last Joe Sandilands book, which was fantastic. This one is also set in France and is a fairly entertaining, if brief, novel. But I was annoyed with Famous Person in a Historical Novel syndrome in which one famous person after another and one famous event after another just happen to brush shoulders with or somehow involve our protagonists. I thought the book should have used either Josephine Baker or Charles Lindbergh, but not both. And then there ...more
Sep 04, 2014 Joanna rated it liked it
I finally finished this book but it took a few weeks to read. I really like the Joe Sandilands character but always get bogged down in the books (only read 3 of them so far). I cannot really pinpoint why I get stuck but eventually make my way through. Very scary characters!!
Michael Rhode
May 28, 2015 Michael Rhode rated it liked it
Not as good as some of the others, as Cleverly drags in real-life characters such as Lindenburgh, Baker and Simenon for the first time, unnecessarily. Still a good read though.
Mar 10, 2014 MaryAnn rated it it was ok
A little slower than some of the other Joe Sandilands books, but with a gripping ending. Cleverly knows how to keep you hanging on till the very last page!
Apr 06, 2010 Ali rated it liked it
Barbara Cleverly is one of my new favorite mystery writers. Her books are just literary enough that I don't feel guilty reading them, they're light enough to be beach reading, and they have fun historical settings with just enough action. She does a good job of plotting and pacing, and "Folly du Jour" is a perfect example of everything I like about her books.

The only thing preventing me from giving her books more stars is that there's very little character development; it's part of what makes Cl
May 12, 2015 Spitz rated it it was ok
Shelves: mysteries, historical
I haven't been reading this series in order. They seem to me to be hit or miss in terms of being a satisfying mystery. This one certainly has the charms of taking place in Paris in 1927 with cameos by Lucky Lindy, Josephine Baker and Georges Simeneon. The not so smooth mechanics of the plot however got in the way of my enjoyment.The distinctive, very British voice of Sandilands's speech and thoughts characterize almost every character's speech and thoughts as well. I really appreciate it when an ...more
Peggy Ritchey
Aug 23, 2014 Peggy Ritchey rated it did not like it
I have read other books in the Joe Sandilands mystery series, including The Last Kashmiri Rose, which was excellent, and liked them. I did not like this one.
Jul 06, 2011 Deb rated it really liked it
An evening at the Theatre in Paris turns into a nightmare of physical interrogation for a British diplomat returning from years of duty in India. An old acquaintance has been murdered in a theatre box and he is the prime suspect. Enter Joe Sandilands, in Paris for an Interpol conference, who knew the suspect back in India and refuses to believe Sir George is a murderer, even of a man as unsavory as the victim. The engaging mystery unfolds from there, with misdirection galore and many period deta ...more
Oct 30, 2009 Babette rated it really liked it
Shelves: mystery-suspense
Barbara Cleverly does not disappoint me. It has been a while since I last read one of her novels. This is the latest in the Joe Sandimans series, this one set in Paris in the 20's. It is the time of Josephine Baker and Lucky Lindy.
I enjoyed the references to some of my favorite places in the City of Light, which made the story come alive for me. As Cleverly lays out the pieces of the puzzle, she keeps the mastermind shrouded in veiled references to a powerful organization most evil, until Sandi
Nov 21, 2014 Rosemary rated it really liked it
A very enjoyable book, but I can't say it lived up to the almost blasphemous quote on the back "evokes and in some ways surpasses Agatha Christie"!
I enjoyed the first few books in this series (the ones set in India), but recently every time I start reading one, I wonder why. This book is set in Paris, 1927 and the dialog is that "smart set" 1920s English you either find charming or annoying. The mystery itself would be fine, if only the detectives hadn't rescued Charles Lindbergh or had Georges Simenon to help them out. Both had me rolling my eyes.
John Lee
Jul 13, 2011 John Lee rated it liked it
Needed a book quickly when I was in the library and this one looked interesting. Hadnt heard of the author before and so it was a bit of a gamble. Did it pay off? Yes, I think so. I enjoyed the read although it wasnt exactly a page turner and so some of the characters got a bit muddled early on.
Liked the setting but couldnt help thinking about Poirot/ and Iain Carmichael as Lord Peter Whimsey.
Aug 14, 2008 Jennifer rated it really liked it
Shelves: historical, mystery
Barbara Cleverly's fictional detective, Joe Sandilands, is one of my favorites since he's usually unflappable and less panicky than others. He doesn't disappoint here, even when he confronts an old foe and is threatened by the very killer he seeks. Set in fashionable Paris during the 1920s (and with a cameo by Miss Josephine Baker), this mystery continues the Sandilands tradition well.
Mar 05, 2010 Susan rated it liked it
Joe Sandilands is bound for an Interpol convention 1920’s Paris when an ex-British diplomat has his throat cut at a Paris music hall. An old friend of Sandilands is arrested and Joe is drawn into the investigation with the French police. Not one of the best of the series, but well-done cameo appearances by Georges Simenon and Josephine Baker enliven the plot.
Sep 17, 2009 Miranda rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This was my first and potentially last Barbara Cleverly. I just could barely finish it - took me about six weeks to get through. I'm not sure why I kept going, possibly because I thought that it could become compelling, but ultimately the characters were not smart or likeable, the plot was farfetched and unbelievable and the writing was confusing for me.
Cyn (RaeWhit)
Jan 15, 2011 Cyn (RaeWhit) rated it it was ok
I'd taken out several of Cleverly's books at once. I started this, so was determined to finish it. But it took an effort. The narrative bogs down in what I think is an over-grasping to set the period. I did enjoy how she worked current events (and even real-life persons) in to the story, how they even interacted with her fictional characters.
Mary Sue
Mar 03, 2011 Mary Sue rated it it was ok
Should have started the series with the first book. Too many big gapping holes needed to be filled in. Loved the sence of place, walking the streets of Paris. Did not finish the book, due to dislike of snobbiness of the British diplomate. Who needs people who lie because as an upper cruster they don't need to talk to investigators.
Set in Paris in the 1920's. Joe Sandilands has just flown in to attend an early Interpol conference when he is called by the embassy to help a fellow Englishman arrested for murder. I liked this book but it moved slowly for me. This is number 8 in the series but the first for me so I'll give Joe another try in the near future.
Apr 19, 2010 Irene rated it liked it
Shelves: 50-in-2010
fun book, a cross between historical fiction and murder mystery. The murder takes place in a theater in Paris during a performance by Josephine Baker on the same night that Lindbergh lands. Very "soft" compared to other murder mysteries, but likeable enough to take out others in the series.
Jul 20, 2010 Elisabeth rated it did not like it
Shelves: couldn-t-finish
I got tired of this book. It was confusing at times and not interesting enough to make me want to finish. That rarely happens to me. I almost always finish a book I start. However, this one slipped away from me and I don't think I'll take it up again.
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Barbara Cleverly was born in the north of England and is a graduate of Durham University. A former teacher, she has spent her working life in Cambridgeshire and Suffolk; she now lives in Cambridge. She has one son and five step-children.

Her Joe Sandilands series of books set against the background of the British Raj was inspired by the contents of a battered old tin trunk that she found in her att
More about Barbara Cleverly...

Other Books in the Series

Joe Sandilands (1 - 10 of 13 books)
  • The Last Kashmiri Rose (Joe Sandilands, #1)
  • Ragtime in Simla (Joe Sandilands #2)
  • The Damascened Blade (Joe Sandilands, #3)
  • The Palace Tiger (Joe Sandilands, #4)
  • The Bee's Kiss (Joe Sandilands, #5)
  • Tug of War (Joe Sandilands, #6)
  • Strange Images of Death (Joe Sandilands, #8)
  • The Blood Royal (Joe Sandilands #9)
  • Not My Blood (Joe Sandilands #10)
  • A Spider in the Cup (Joe Sandilands #11)

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