Murder in the Marais (Aimee Leduc Investigations, #1)
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Murder in the Marais (Aimee Leduc Investigations #1)

3.39 of 5 stars 3.39  ·  rating details  ·  2,719 ratings  ·  499 reviews
Aimee Leduc, a Parisian private investigator, has always sworn she would stick to tech investigation--no criminal cases for her. Especially since her father, the late police detective, was killed in the line of duty. But when an old Jewish man approaches Aimee with a top-secret decoding job on behalf of a woman in his synagogue, Aimee unwittingly takes on more than she was...more
Hardcover, 354 pages
Published November 1st 2003 by Soho Crime (first published 1999)
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Cara Black reinforces the belief that it must be difficult indeed to write a good mystery; Murder in the Marais is eye-rollingly bad. Oh, I wanted to like it! It's Paris! It's the resistance! We get to learn about just how miserable life was in occupied Paris! But there are just so many problems. From the small ones - her dog, cloyingly named "Miles Davis" NEVER has to go out to pee, and seems to spend all day and night in her apartment or at the local news stand; to the simply annoying - she sl...more
I haven't finished this book and am quitting, 30% into the book. It is driving me crazy. There are all these pseudo-French expressions, to make it look more French. Only, I spend my time spotting things like pâté, spelt pâte, which is a totally different thing, or expressions like "la double morte" which is supposed for Parisians to refer to both police and taxes (?)
This one is one of Black's favourites obviously since she goes on and on about it.
I have been living in Paris for 68 years and hav...more

sorry for yelling but that was important. This is a really coolly layered mystery novel set in france. you are dealing with nazi/conspirators/jews from the WWII era, but in a modern world filled with neo-nazis, so you get these great dynamics that ask us fundamentally would a nazi today agree with a neo-nazi, what power did people have, can a fundamentally good person be a fundamentally bad...more
This first novel in the Aimee Leduc PI series was flawed, but worth reading. I loved the idea of a private detective series set in Paris, and the plot--which begins with a murder of a Jewish woman, who had a swastika carved on her forehead--sounded interesting.

What made it flawed were the highly unrealistic plot elements (running across Paris rooftops in high heels, amazing recoveries from fights and injuries, a superhuman ability to crack computer systems) and the lack of characterization. Too...more
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
This book is the first novel in a series about an American/French investigator who takes over her father's agency after he's killed in a terrorist attack. This debut is set in 1993 Paris, and centers around a Jewish neighborhood and a murdered elderly woman who is found with a swastika carved on her forehead. The investigation touches on the sensitive issue of collaborators - Jews who denounced other Jews to the occupying Nazis.

Our intrepid detective in her debut appearance must find out why sh...more
Aug 01, 2008 Popvoid rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Mystery fans
I enjoyed this book, although I must agree with some of the negative comments that others have made here. She does throw in too many characters too quickly making it difficult to keep track of everyone. At one point, I realized that a character I pictured as a young man, was actually in his fifties (although if I had thought about it, for a minute, I would have realized he had to be). The writing is a little shaky at times, but not terrible. As a first effort, I thought is was fine. It intrigued...more
Terri Lynn
I discovered this excellent mystery on Goodreads. This is author Cara Black's first novel and she got off to a rousing good start.

It is November of 1993 in Paris when private detective Aimee Leduc is stopped by a rabbi who asks her to decipher a 50-year old encrypted photograph and take the results to an older lady in the Marais (the old Jewish section of Paris). Aimee generally does not do this type of work anymore but Soli Hecht tells her that her late father assured him she would help him if...more
What a fabulous novel! So thoughtful and yet the book moves and is very complex. The ending actually had me squirming. I read this like I was starving! "Never forget" is the motto of Holocaust survivors. Cara Black's vivid book has added another voice! On to Belleville!
Apr 10, 2012 Jim rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: mystery fans, WWII readers
For the last couple of years I have been reading reviews of Paris-set mysteries by Cara Black. The other day while searching a bookstore for books by another author (not found), I came across Black’s books on a “Mystery “ shelf. I thought “Okay, now’s your chance!” I picked up a copy of book #1 in her Paris mysteries, MURDER IN THE MARAIS (ISBN 978-1569479995, $9.99, trade paperback, Soho Press), at a really good price. My wife & I spent about 9 days in Paris last November so it’s really fun...more
This was a remarkably stupid book. Aimée Leduc is a nitwit and manages to pull off impossible stunts throughout the book. Cara Black should not attempt to speak French - she uses it incorrectly throughout the book. Hell, she should watch her English: she described someone as "beat red". Oh really? That is also the fault of her editors for not catching such a glaring and annoying error.

The story is disjointed and even after having read the whole damn book, (view spoiler)...more
May 03, 2011 Besha rated it 2 of 5 stars
Shelves: 2011
My mom sent me this so I had to read it. My mom usually has a pretty good handle on my taste. However. The main character is basically a French Cayce Pollard with no human failings and more awesome powers. For example, she manages to take a bath and sleep with a white supremacist without losing her mohawk wig or fake tattoos. I wish I had that power. Luckily, because the main character is perfect, it turns out he’s not really a white supremacist, he’s a journalist infiltrating the organization....more
Not well written. Plot holes you could drive a truck through. The characters did/said odd things just to move the plot along.
Wonderfully written and intensely suspenseful. I can't wait to read the rest of the series.
Sheila Magyar
This book is the 1st in the Aimee Leduc Investigation series. It is also a first novel written by Cara Black. Aimee is a detective in Paris. A Paris of 1993, surrounded in webs of past collaborations, new Nazis, and subtle nuances woven in a tale of new and old hatred and remembered loves all in a background of a fine Parisian atmosphere. In this stunning debut novel Cara Black does for Paris what Linda Fairstein, the author of the Alex Cooper series, does for New York.

Aimee, is a thirty four ye...more
Aimee Leduc, a young French-American detective living in Paris, is hired by a renowned Holocaust survivor to decode an encrypted message and ends up entangled in a murder investigation in the Marais district of Paris. Her undercover search leads to a neo-Nazi group and lots of intrigue involving current politicians and people involved in the German occupation of France in World War II.

The story was interesting and the characters certainly were a challenge as many were not who they seemed or pres...more
Seth Lynch
There is a nice vegetarian restaurant in The Marais, next to a Lesbian night club. We used to go to the restaurant as the other veggie place we found was seriously cramped. I haven’t been back to Paris since Minty was born and I turned Vegan. I hope to fit in a trip later this year, in the Winter, when it’s quiet. Anyway…

Gary Corby, writer of the superb Pericles Commission, recommended Cara Black’s books to me. I felt a little conflicted – I’m writing about a Parisian detective and so is Cara, a...more
Sort of a Lara Croft of mystery - Aimee Leduc has a tragic history but is more than capable of handling herself and any situation. When she is emotionally blackmailed into a murder investigation she shortly realizes that this challenge is much more complex than she imagined. As other murders occur and she is threatened in every aspect of her life, she continues to pursue false leads despite all the mounting evidence that the solution lies in the past of the Nazi occupation of Paris during WWII....more
I recently learned about this book (and series of 13 murder mysteries set in Paris) from my Page-a-Day book calendar. It caught my eye because I'm going to Paris in a few weeks for the first time, so I thought I'd give it a whirl. It took me a while to get into and at first I didn't like the narrator. But somewhere in the first third of the book, I clicked in and it was a fun ride.

It's been interesting reading other reviews which are all over the map. Overall I enjoyed the book, but if I put my...more
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
This is the first in the Aimee Leduc mystery series set in Paris. Thanks to my friend Suzy's recommendation, I decided to start this series. I really enjoyed this book. Cara Black writes so well about Paris that you feel that you are in the neighborhoods. I could have used less of her interspersing French names throughout the dialogs, but overall I enjoyed her writing.

Plus, I thought the story line was captivating. Set in Paris in 1999, it is the story of murder and betrayal that started during...more
Rubbish. This book had an unbelievable, far-fetched plot and was clumsily put together. What surprised me the most about it was that I liked it when I first read it, over twelve years ago. I can't imagine how that could be except that maybe I was taken with all the cobblestones and chocolate croissants, the story being set in Paris. So I expected to like it again, but I didn't. At one point towards the end, I thought maybe this is all tongue-in-cheek, and that's why the plot is so improbable. Bu...more
This was another book read in preparation for my Paris trip and it was equally unsuccessful. The plot was totally unbelievable. I tried to like it but just couldn't. It was hard not to compare the heroine to Lisbeth Salander and while Stieg Larsson's books may be equally unbelievable, I was sucked in to those immediately. Who would believe it would be so interesting to read about computer hacking? Not so in Black's book. Also, there was so much set-up for the next book - one reason I generally a...more
This book was an OK read. I did like the basic plot that dealt with Nazi collaborators in Paris during WWII and the consequences of their actions in the present (1993). But the writing was sometimes awkward and too many characters were introduced which made it difficult to remember their relationship at times. I found myself struggling to finish the book as it had not captured my interest. The detective, Aimee Leduc, seemed almost superhuman at times, getting injuries but being able to carry on...more
Mary Sue
Having visited Paris on only one enthusiastic occasion, I was thrilled to read a book set in a neighborhood where people lived and in this case died. Cara Black gave me a wonderful blend of Paris today and Paris during the Nazi occupation. Her main character Aimee Leduc is a very sharp investigator who wants to specialize in forensic investigation. She is called in on a case that leads her across the roof tops and underground in the sewers and catacombs beneath the city. She has a computer geniu...more
Gordon Jones
This book was better than I thought it would be. I think I might read another one of her books
I got about 2/3+ through the book and just lost interest. Too bad, really, because it had potential -- a mystery set in contemporary Paris with connections to WWII-era Nazi occupation. Ultimately the problem was a herky-jerky, inconsistent character development -- the main character was more of an enigma than the mystery she was trying to solve. It's a first novel, and I'd say the writer has potential but needs a strong editor to help her hone her craft.
This is the first book I have read in the Aimee Leduc series and it will be my last. Why are female detective characters so poorly written? Did the author really believe that it was a good idea in the first book in this series to have her detective involved in a torrid affair with a neo-Nazi? Are we supposed to find that mysterious or admirable or endearing?

If anyone knows a good female detective that I should be reading, please let me know.
Sorry for the one star but I have to be honest. I thought this was so poorly written I gave up on it after about 50 pages. I even abandoned the book at the airport. It might have been because I had just finished The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo and the heroine of this book fares poorly in comparison to Lisbeth Salander. But even the Parisian setting (the Marais, no less) fell completely flat. This is a series I will not be pursuing.
Fairly typical crime story with plenty of beating up the PI and a respectably tightly-knit mystery. The author does a great job of having a badass and simultaneously feminine protagonist, without resorting to rape or damseling to force sympathy and while still holding to traditional noir tropes like the morally dubious love interest. (Can I get away with using "homme fatal" as a phrase? Is that accepted yet?) In any case, I do wish her homme fatal had ever showed up for more than a sex scene or...more
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Cafe Libri: March: Murder in the Marais, by Cara Black 4 4 Mar 16, 2014 04:06PM  
  • Blood of the Wicked
  • Frozen Assets (Officer Gunnhilder, #1)
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  • The Damage Done
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  • Moonlight Downs (Emily Tempest, #1)
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  • We'll Always Have Paris: Sex & Love in the City of Light
  • The Bookseller
  • Remembrance of Things Paris: Sixty Years of Writing from Gourmet (Modern Library Food)
Cara Black frequents a Paris little known outside the beaten tourist track. A Paris she discovers on research trips and interviews with French police, private detectives and café owners. She lives in San Francisco with her husband, a bookseller, and their teenage son. She is a San Francisco Library Laureate and a member of the Paris Sociéte Historique in the Marais. Her nationally bestselling and...more
More about Cara Black...
Murder in Belleville (Aimee Leduc Investigations, #2) Murder in the Sentier (Aimee Leduc Investigations, #3) Murder on the Ile Saint-Louis (Aimee Leduc Investigations, #7) Murder in the Bastille (Aimee Leduc Investigations, #4) Murder in Montmartre (Aimee Leduc Investigations, #6)

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