It has been decades since I've read a Simenon. For whatever reason, who knows it could have been a mention in something else I was reading or just a random thought out of the murky muck of my reader's brain, but I have recently developed an interest in Simenon. He has the reputation of a ladies man, a drinker, but a disciplined writer none the less. He wrote over 200 books, small books, but actually they are a nice size for my murder mystery fix.
I liked the relationship between Maigret and his wife. I read too many books about single people. I don't know if that is my fault for the books I pick or if publishing is awash with books about unattached people. Maybe we all become too boring to write about once we get married.
I liked the pace of the book. Maigret uses his noggin to puzzle through the clues he has been given. He is patient, letting things develop, picking away at people's statements, taking the train to Toulon to harass yet again a man he knows is in some part guilty of the crime and then on the way back home on the train he shaves. He always shaves on the train. The trains I've been on that would be a potentially dangerous activity, but I love references like that.
The book was thoroughly satisfying exactly what I expected, but better in the sense that I found myself wondering what Maigret would have to eat next time I had a chance to delve into his life and would he have that second glass of white wine. I have a bio of Simenon on the shelf, a bio of Josephine Baker (She had a bit of fling with Simenon and is damned interesting in her own right.) and picked up a couple of more Harcourt Brace Jovanovich Maigret's to read in the near future. I also have started watching the 12 Maigret episodes aired by PBS in 1992 starring Dumbledore otherwise known as Sir Michael Gambon. I am immershing myself in Simenon and hope to come out the other side with at least a working knowledge of this prolific and fascinating writer.