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The Body in the Castle Well

(Bruno, Chief of Police #12)

4.37  ·  Rating details ·  323 ratings  ·  46 reviews
An aging art scholar and a visiting student, haunting echoes of France's colonialist past, and a delicious navarin of lamb--Bruno is back, and his latest case leads him from the Renaissance to the French Resistance and beyond by way of a corpse at the bottom of a well.

When Claudia, a young American, turns up dead in the courtyard of an ancient castle in Bruno's jurisdictio
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Hardcover, 352 pages
Published June 4th 2019 by Knopf Publishing Group
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4.37  · 
Rating details
 ·  323 ratings  ·  46 reviews


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Ken Fredette
Dec 12, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I've read all of Martin Walker's books now, and I'll tell you that this book makes the most sense with Bruno's life. As a policeman and as a potential lover, with all his possible lovers, which come into play somewhere in his story. You really want to eat one of Bruno's meals, ride with him when he goes to Pamela's stable, and play with Balzac ears. Walk with him as he feeds the chickens and ducks and go with him as he walks in the woods. In this book he interest you with hawks and canoeing so y ...more
Chris Conley
Jun 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This story reminds me of why I love mysteries. Bruno is a smart, quiet man who listens and learns about his community and eventually figures out who has committed the crime. These books are filled with good people, great food, lovely scenery and dastardly criminals. The bad guys always get theirs in the end. I love the tone of these books. They are quiet and very smart.
Paul
Jun 04, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This latest installment of the Bruno series is not by any means a hard-charging thriller, but like all of Walker’s books, one that simmers and can be savored over several nights. There are a couple side-plots/ topics that are particularly enjoyable, namely, Brunos’ love of horseback riding, a short foray into falconry, and Bruno’s work on this year’s summer concert series. This book is probably accessible on its own, but might be enjoyed more if one reads the first Bruno book so to really unders ...more
Janet
Jun 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A rich American art student is found dead at the bottom of a well in an ancient hilltop castle. The young woman, Claudia, had been working in the archives of an eminent French art historian, a crippled Resistance war hero, at his art-filled chateau.
As Claudia's White House connections get the US Embassy and the FBI involved, Bruno traces the people and events that led to her fatal accident - or was it murder?
Bruno is taken down a trail that leads him from the ruins of Berlin in 1945, to France'
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Cynthia
May 13, 2019 rated it really liked it
An excellent mystery series.... The returning cast of characters is easy to follow even if you're new to the series. If you enjoy a good mystery, with some history....& wine & cooking mixed in....then this is a great story to get into! It takes place in the Perigord region of France, & in this book we learn something about this region of France, Josephine Baker & the French Foreign Legion & the French SS....& also quite a bit about cooking & wine selections! It's all ...more
Abibliofob
May 15, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Once again Chief of Police Bruno has to solve a strange murder in Dordogne. I really love the description of life in rural France with all the food, wine and culture. I also like the fantastic description of everyday life in a little village and it's surroundings. This time there is also international difficulties to handle. If by chance someone has not started with this series you better do it now. It's great fun reading.
Harriet
Not one of his best efforts. The end was terribly complicated! As always I enjoyed Bruno’s cooking and the atmosphere of St.Denis. The plot was ok except for the end.
Gill Chedgey
Jun 04, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
You spend a larger than average percentage of your life reading, you believe yourself to be fairly well clued up on books and writers and then you come across someone who’ve you’ve never read and somehow never heard of who has written numerous books and - you feel pretty stupid!

Martin Walker - I am so sorry! The old adage better late than never twinkles its way into my vernacular but really there’s no excuse. I will do better I promise and seek out your previous works.

But, dear reader, I can hea
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Kath
May 19, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I've read and enjoyed all the books in this series starring Bruno, chief of Police. I think the reason I enjoy them so much is that they all follow a similar pattern and characters once met in previous books pop up again and it's always lovely to reconnect with "old friends". I also love the descriptions of the area in which the books are set and, of course, the rich history that often goes hand in hand with the cases Bruno gets to investigate. And then there's the food... Reading these books al ...more
Elaine Tomasso
Jun 03, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I would like to thank Netgalley and Quercus Books for an advance copy of The Body in the Castle Well, the twelfth novel to feature Bruno Courrèges, Chief of Police of the Perigord town of Saint Denis.

Bruno is contacted early one morning by his friend Florence who wants to report another friend, American student Claudia Muller, missing. Claudia left an evening lecture early feeling ill and has not been seen since. Her body is soon found in the well of the castle where the lecture was held. Nobody
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Wulf Krueger
Oh, Bruno, what did he do to you?!


Bruno, you know I just love following your adventures around St. Denis. Unfortunately, just having finished the 12th outing – The Body in the Castle Well – I feel tired. Tired by the never-changing tides in St. Denis – there are even two love stories which are rehashed (again!) – and the complexity of the mystery. (And there's a third love interest to boot!)

The Bruno mysteries always were a “place” you gladly came back to because while things were moving on, t
...more
Alyson Read
Jun 03, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Bruno Corrèges, now Lieutenant and the municipal policeman for St. Denis, is back for another case, together with his horse Hector still stabled with his ex-lover Pamela and his trusty basset hound Balzac. He gets a telephone call from Florence, a friend from the college informing him that a young American student, Claudia Muller, has gone missing. She has been studying in the chateau archives of eminent art historian Pierre de Bourdeille who was also a Resistance war hero and is now wheelchair ...more
Scilla
Jun 16, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Another great Bruno book. At the beginning, Florence calls Bruno first thing in the morning to tell her that Claudia, an American student from Yale studying for her PhD in art, was sick the night before at a lecture. When Florence called to see how she was, there was no answer. Bruno starts to search for her, first going to her rooming house, where the bed has not been slept in. He and Balzac go up to the castle where she was last seen leaving the lecture. He hears the mewing of a cat and Balzac ...more
Nancy
May 16, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Bruno Solves the Case of a Missing Art Student

When Claudia, a wealthy American art student, doesn’t return to her lodging after a lecture, Bruno is called in to find out what happened to her. There are few clues in her room, so he proceeds to the castle where the lecture was held. Finding no obvious clues, he sets his basset hound, Balzac, on the trail. Balzac is attracted to the plaintive cries of a kitten trapped in the well that has not been carefully covered by the workmen who are restoring
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Rebecca Wilkins
Jun 07, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2019
I waited almost a whole year for this new Bruno book and then read it in 2 days! Last year I spent the better part of the summer reading all 11 Chief of Police Bruno books and it was a great way to spend the summer. This was a nice addition albeit fairly mild with only one murder and bad guys who didn't stand out until nearly the end as likely candidates. I suppose I watch too many British murder mysteries on TV where it isn't successful unless there are at least 3 murders and plenty of gore. I ...more
Steve
Jun 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The Body in The Castle is another amusing and entertaining addition to Martin Walker’s Bruno, Chief of Police series. As the novel opens, a rich American woman is found deceased in the well of a castle located in a small French town. Bruno has two separate challenges. Number one and most important, find out why someone wanted this girl dead. And number two, fight a continuing battle with the powerful investigator hired by the victim’s father. As leads accumulate, Bruno continues his investigatio ...more
The Library Lady
Truthfully, the mystery here isn't the key, the pleasure in this series is the view of daily life in the Perigord region of France. Bruno's love life is beginning to irritate me, complete with hints that his true love interest may be someone he doesn't even know he cares so much about, and his relationship with Pamela feels soap opera like-she seems to have a secret agenda. And then of course, here comes Isabelle again. I thought about marking this down to a 3 for all that, but since it's more 3 ...more
Kayla
Jun 17, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I give this book 3-3.5 stars. It wasn’t a bad book by any means. I actually really enjoyed the setting and the characters. It was nice to spend time in France and get to know the people there and their unique culture. The mystery itself wasn’t that fascinating. Sometimes the facts got confusing. There was a lot of history throughout the book, which I really enjoyed.

Also, this book belongs to a series I have never read before. I could tell there were a lot of references to previous books but eve
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Mary
Jun 16, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: myteries, travel
Lost my first review somehow--when changing to correct edition. Frustrated.

Eager for next Bruno novel as soon as I finish the previous one!

Quibbles--Mother of deceased mourning doesn't ring true--too composed

Why doesn't Bruno realize Florence is his woman? Some hint of it when he feels relief that she doesn't have a hot date when he is asked to child sit.

Confusing plot but Walker knows his stuff. After reading Modiano and others I know more about Resistance and Vichy government and it's repercu
...more
Ashley Hite
When the body of an American art student is discovered in a well Bruno must discover if her death was a freak accident or something more sinister. His investigation leads him to the art historian she was working with who had ties to the French Resistance during the war and may have had some shady art dealings in his past.

I was new to the Bruno series and this was not the most exciting work to be introduced to it. The mystery was a bit generic and I found myself bored through most of it.
Josie
Jun 11, 2019 rated it it was amazing
My favorite Bruno book yet...I say that every time. The history is fascinating. The food and wine descriptions are devine. Martin has an easy way of drawing you in. I always look forward to the next Bruno book. It's like a dear friend has invited me over and is taking me on a journey of the French countryside. Bruno's romances get kicked up in this installment, and that has me anxiously awaiting book #13!
Mainer207
Jun 14, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audiobook
I’m going to have to re-read this. I love the Bruno series but I got lost in all the characters. I’m sure it’s my fault; I’ve been listening to this while suffering with the flu so I know I’ve missed important points.

It was good. Of course it was. It’s Martin Walker. And Robert Ian MacKenzie is a fabulous reader of the audiobook.

I still like Isobel and Bruno. Please have them connect again.
Judy Ludlow
Jun 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Wonderful reading.

I think Martin walker is my favourite author. He writes cleanly and honestly. His characters make sense. He taught me to understand pate de fois gras - I still don’t eat it, but can accept why it is made. I want to make the onion tarte tatin. Love Balzac and Hector and really hope he sticks with Pamela. I also wish he wrote more than one book a year. Also enjoy the history of Perigord.
Tiffany E-P
Jun 12, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Can someone find me a Bruno of my own? He would be the perfect partner! But aside from drooling over the main character, I love reading about southern France. It takes me back to my study abroad semester. Makes me miss that pace of life and the food—-omg the cheese! I think the food and wine descriptions in this series are a large part of what keeps me reading them. But the characters and plots are so good too-it really is a read to savor
Michael Dunn
Feels like the author mailed this in. Almost nothing new happened in St. Denis. Very few of the regular inhabitants were involved. Isabell just got in at the end. The mystery wasn't all that interesting or explored. Might be the least interesting book of the series. Almost felt like a giant prologue to the next book.
Lois
Jun 15, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Bruno and other familiar characters in the series return, and as Bruno solves the crime we also learn about falconry, the pieds-noirs of the Algerian war and their ties to modern right wing politics, modern methods for authenticating historic documents, and the beautiful village of Limeuil. Oh, and Bruno cooks a feast for his friends and another omelet version. Fine entertainment all round.
Dale Wyant
Jun 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This series never disappoints. I have read all 12 and would move to St. Denis tomorrow despite all the intrigues! I love all the characters, major and minor, the food and how Walker includes a bit of historical perspective in every book. Here you learn more about falconry as well as pate! Just wish I didn't have to wait so long in between books! Bravo encore Monsieur and merci!
Maureen Hetzel
Jun 14, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This mystery series is one of the best! Bruno is the head of police in a small community in the Perigord region of France. The books always include a complicated plot with an overlaid story of the happenings in the village, fascinating insights into French history, and descriptions of mouth-watering meals featuring foodstuffs and wines from the region. Highly recommended to all!
Peggy
May 03, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I still love Bruno because, really, who wouldn’t? He’s a wonderful person surrounded by great friends both human and animal, fine wines, mouth-watering food, all set in la belle France. This series entry includes art, possible forgeries, history, and a little romance. Oops, I almost forgot, also a mystery or two. A very enjoyable read, as always.
Darius Ostrowski
Jun 10, 2019 rated it really liked it
Continued excellence, a fun romp through French country life once again. A bit less focus on the food than usual, I still don't understand why Bruno doesn't just shoot the newspaper reporter one dark night on the backroads, and the Americans are more annoying than usual, but still a fun read.
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Martin Walker is the U.S. bureau chief for The Guardian (London), a regular commentator for CNN, and a columnist for newspapers in the United States, Europe, and Moscow. A published novelist and poet, he lives in Washington, D.C. with his wife, the novelist Julia Watson, and their two daughters.

Other books in the series

Bruno, Chief of Police (1 - 10 of 12 books)
  • Bruno, Chief of Police (Bruno, Chief of Police #1)
  • The Dark Vineyard (Bruno, Chief of Police #2)
  • Black Diamond (Bruno, Chief of Police, #3)
  • The Crowded Grave (Bruno, Chief of Police #4)
  • The Devil's Cave (Bruno, Chief of Police, #5)
  • The Resistance Man (Bruno, Chief of Police #6)
  • Children of War (Bruno, Chief of Police #7)
  • The Patriarch (Bruno, Chief of Police, #8)
  • Fatal Pursuit (Bruno, Chief of Police, #9)
  • The Templars' Last Secret (Bruno, Chief of Police, #10)