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The Hotel Majestic (Maigret #20)

3.78  ·  Rating details ·  821 Ratings  ·  79 Reviews
Penguin delivers two more vintage Inspector Maigret novels by the legendary mystery author In The Hotel Majestic, Maigret investigates the murder of Mrs. Clark, the wife of a wealthy American industrialist, whose strangled body is found in the basement of an upscale hotel near the Champs-Elysees. Maigret's inquiries take him from the endless corridors of the Hotel Majestic ...more
ebook, 176 pages
Published December 26th 2006 by Penguin Books (first published 1942)
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Ivonne Rovira
Feb 29, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: especially newcomers to series
Although The Cellars of the Majestic is the 20th novel in Georges Simenon’s series featuring Detective Chief Inspector Maigret, The Cellars of the Majestic is set before Pietr the Latvian, the first-ever Maigret novel. (view spoiler)

Maigret investigates the death of Mimi Clark, the beautiful French-born wife of a Detroit industrialist. Although quite wealthy since her marriage six years ago to the Am
Orinoco Womble (tidy bag and all)
Good old Maigret. What would I do without him for sleepless nights?
A wealthy American's wife turns up strangled in the staff lockers of a luxury Paris hotel. Whodunit, and why dunit there? The accused is a hapless breakfast cook, but Maigret isn't buying his guilt.

This isn't the first or the last time that the Hotel Majestic and Bar La Cupole is as much a character in a Simenon novel as any one of the humans involved. We hear and see the bustle behind the scenes that creates the luxurious surr
Jul 13, 2011 rated it really liked it
Reading Simenon is like eating a bar of dark chocolate...not much thought required but intellectually admirable, everything tidy at the end, and always a pleasure.
Dec 16, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: maigret, simenon
" - Torrance reappears, after being murdered in 1931 (in Maigret and the Enigmatic Lett)!
- Maigret is no longer retired and is back living in the apartment on Boulevard Richard-Lenoir.
- Janvier make a first appearance.
- The Maigrets, once again, have no children.
- The previous Maigret book (in English) - Maigret Returns - was written in 1934. It was the 19th book in the series and, by all appearances, it was destined to be the last. This destiny, gratefully, did not take. This book, number 2
Tempo de Ler
'Maigret e o Cadáver no Armário' proporciona-nos umas boas horas de entretenimento.

Divertido, rápido e interessante, o enredo é conduzido com proficiência e simplicidade. Tendo em conta a frugalidade de Simenon com as palavras, é notável como o escritor consegue criar um carismático lote de personagens e uma atmosfera tão vívida e atraente para o leitor.

O final é satisfatório e algo inesperado (…o que poderá dever-se à sua ligeira orientação para o rebuscado…). Este é o meu primeiro contacto c
Jul 10, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
THE HOTEL MAJESTIC. (1942). Georges Simenon. ***1/2.
Even though his name doesn’t appear in the title of the novel, this is a Maigret mystery. I have to admit that it is one of the more confusing ones, since Simenon has chosen to people his story with a great number of characters – many of them of no real importance to the plot line. It is set at the Hotel Majestic, so you might imagine how many of its employees and guests step in for cameo appearances. All that aside, once you have the gist of t
Jul 02, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone who enjoys a well-written, enjoyable, police mystery novel set in interwar Paris
This is the second Georges Simenon Maigret novel I've read. Nor will it be the last. In so few words, Simenon creates a rich, multi-textured world with a colorful assortment of characters which is dazzling. There is a murder in a Parisian hotel of a woman who had been staying there with her American husband (and child, governess, and maid), who apparently is estranged from her, enraptured as he is with the governess and apparently set on going off to Rome with her.

But everything isn't as it see
John Frankham
Nov 04, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: crime-detective
One of the best Maigrets. The depiction of the workings of the hidden world in the bowels of a large hotel, and of the life of the staff is a masterly piece of writing, but then there is the mystery to solve also ...

Maigret investigates the murder of the wife of a wealthy American, whose strangled body is found in a staff locker in the basement of a grand hotel near the Champs-Elysees. Maigret’s inquiries take him from the endless corridors of the Hotel Majestic to the Bois de Boulogne and sun-d
Jan 25, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
My edition - Maigret and the Hotel Majestic

Another brilliant example of the genius of Simenon. Maigret doesn't solve his cases like Holmes or Poirot with intellect, he immerses himself in the characters and locations and soaks up the knowledge of what makes them tick. Simenon also writes with the most wonderful economy. There is no padding in his stories, no wasted words. His books are nearly always quite short, around 130 pages but he can say more in those pages than many other writers in much
The Maigret books are just perfect. Perfect little slices of Parisian life, and Maigret's mind. Nothing is sugar-coated, but nothing is too challenging, either. And really, Paris in the late '40s/50's - what more is there to say?
Jan C
Dec 29, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery, france
Fairly quick read.

Simenon was faster than this reader. I didn't get it. Although all the clues were there.

Loved the locale ... how he just painted the portrait of this magnificent hotel, majestic if you will.

I've only read a couple of his books. Will have to look for more.
Richard Hannay
May 12, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: french, noir, 2017
Excelente como siempre Simenon en una novela de resolución un tanto enrevesada pero admirable en la descripción de tipos humanos y sobre todo en la compasion por las gentes sin suerte. Pareja luminosa la que forman Prosper Dongé y Charlotte, durmiendo por turnos en el lecho cuasi-conyugal e impagable el momento en el que Maigret interroga en bicicleta a aquél. Incluso el asesino es, en el fondo, poco más que un oportunista desdichado.
Colleen Mertens
Dec 31, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I read this book on the advice of the owner of one of my favorite bookstores(Thanks, Trevor). The story entertained and moved quickly. The action moved at a good pace and the ending wasn't predictable. The characters had pasts with more than met the eye and the chief inspector Maigret is one of my new favorite characters. Looking forward to reading more in the series.
The French wife of a nasty American industrialist is found strangled in a basement locker at the fashionable Hotel Majestic. Her ex-lover is a breakfast chef at the hotel, but did he do it? A young prosecuting judge thinks so, but Maigret is not so sure. As usual, Simenon's description of the environment, and mental state of the inspector, makes for a fun and interesting read.
Jun 14, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Of the several Maigrets I've read, I think this is my favorite. Why read it in German you ask? I can't read it in French and the German translation reads very well and gives me a chance to do some very enjoyable light reading auf Deutsch (as the Neueschreibweise prescribes, with that new capital D).
Sep 17, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Simenon's plots do not resolve with the clicking of a hundred little gears, but with the strong flow of simultaneous human life!
Paul Jellinek
May 06, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This one lacks some of the darkness and gloom of my favorite Maigret books, but Maigret is still Maigret, and that's worth at least four stars.
Knut Sigurd
May 19, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Intrikat og spennande, og det er kjekt å følgje saka gjennom humøret til Maigret.
Michael Romo
Jul 23, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Maigret in Paris. What could be better?
Jun 11, 2017 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This is the first Maigret that I have given a less than wholly positive number of stars too. I could give a measured critique, but I simply just didn't like it.
Alexander Inglis
In Georges Simenon's 1942 novel, Hotel Majestic, Chief Inspector Jules Maigret must solve the murder of an American tycoon's wife whose strangled body is found unceremoniously stuffed into an employee's locker in the basement of a Paris hotel. The tycoon, however, has an alibi (he's been dallying with the governess instead of his French-born wife), and if the tycoon's six year old son, with fiery red hair, happens to bear a striking resemblance to the accused murderer, a hotel employee named Pro ...more
Nov 04, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own, previously-read
A second reading of this Maigret novel does nothing to make me want to change my star rating.
Despite previously having retired and moved out of Paris we have a story of the Chief Inspector being in charge of a murder in one of the capital’s better hotels, The Majestic.
This book therefore in many ways is a re-birth of this wonderful series; now set in the 1940’s police techniques have improved but every reason you liked Maigret before is here to enjoy. Torrance is re-incarnated after having previ
Phillip Kay
Dec 27, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Maigret and the Hotel Majestic was first published in 1942 as Maigret et les caves du Majestic, and was translated into English by Caroline Hillier. This is a relatively early Maigret story which combines with great skill a depiction of a group of working class people associated in one way or the other with a grand hotel, and an expertly plotted and intriguing detective story involving swindling, forgery and murder. The world of Prosper Donge, a cook at the Hotel Majestic, has been transformed w ...more
Jun 04, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is a knockout Inspector Maigret book, perhaps one of the best I have read thus far (and I think I've devoured about fifteen of these). Part of my pleasure derives from the fact that the story is confined to tight quarters -- the interior of the Majestic, a luxury hotel in Paris, where two murders take place, and each employee has an assigned geographical location and schedule. Thus the stranglings of a wealthy woman who is a guest, and a man who is an employee of the hotel, both of whose bo ...more
Michael Lassell
Jun 01, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I don't know how I missed this series all these years, since I knew it existed from the Michael Gambon TV series in Great Britain. There are 75 books, only a handful of which are currently available in English and/or in electronic formats.

If this one book is any indication, Simenon has mastered a unique and incredibly concise style... it's a kind of police procedural without all the minutiae of the procedure. The atmosphere is terrific, in this case a grand hotel on the Champs-Élysées, where a w
A fast, fun read.
Inspector Maigret is the protagonist of Simenon's series. I enjoyed meeting him in this book. He is a stereotypical plodding detective. He may not look at a scene and immediately know what occurred, but he takes each step, making sure that the true murderer is revealed. There is a sort of, well, mania is maybe too strong of a word, but Maigret really wants to make sure that he jails the right person (not just the convenient suspect), even if that person is the wealthy American h
Marti Martinson
Mar 28, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
My second Maigret novel. Simenon writes almost sparsely, but there is actually a lot going on. Rich in character development, evolving plot, and character description, I only have a problem with FOLLOWING the dialogue: sometimes it just isn't clear as to who is actually speaking. I have never guessed a Perry Mason episode correctly and I didn't get "whodunit" here either.

Simenon also does not take himself, France, or writing TOO seriously:

Maigret, plebian to the core, to the very marrow of his b
Maigret's crime is pretty tame. Murder with some forgeries. Drug scene loomed very much far behind as a vignette. Nothing heavy to digest.

Well, it's amusing at least. I'm not sure if it's the era or if it's France, Maigret just breezily tackle the phone exchange asking to eaves drop on a conversation. Ah, the time when you need to ask someone to connect your phone call. Not a drop of privacy or pretension of it. If you're Madame Maigret it's unphantomable not to show every single letter you rec
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Mrs Clark, Américaine descendue à l'hôtel Majestic, est étranglée dans le vestiaire du personnel de l'établissement ; le cadavre est trouvé dans une armoire du vestiaire par Prosper Donge. Mr Clark étant un industriel important, Maigret est prié de mener l'enquête avec discrétion. Après une journée passée dans les caves du palace, le commissaire s'intéresse à Donge, domicilié à Saint-Cloud, vivant avec Charlotte, ancienne danseuse qu'il a jadis connue à Cannes, où il s'occupait de la caféterie à ...more
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Simenon was one of the most prolific writers of the twentieth century, capable of writing 60 to 80 pages per day. His oeuvre includes nearly 200 novels, over 150 novellas, several autobiographical works, numerous articles, and scores of pulp novels written under more than two dozen pseudonyms. Altogether, about 550 million copies of his works have been printed.

He is best known, however, for his 75
More about Georges Simenon...

Other Books in the Series

Maigret (1 - 10 of 75 books)
  • Pietr the Latvian (Maigret, #1)
  • The Carter of 'La Providence' (Maigret, #2)
  • The Late Monsieur Gallet (Maigret, #3)
  • The Hanged Man of Saint-Pholien (Maigret, #4)
  • A Man's Head (Maigret #5)
  • The Yellow Dog (Maigret #6)
  • The Night at the Crossroads (Maigret #7)
  • A Crime in Holland (Maigret #8)
  • The Grand Banks Café (Maigret, #9)
  • The Dancer at the Gai-Moulin (Maigret #10)