At the start of Cabasson’s outstanding first in his Napoleonic Wars mystery series, Capt. Quentin Margont and his army unit are about to cross from Poland into Russia in June 1812 as part of Napoleon’s invasion force when he’s summoned to the headquarters of his commander, Prince Eugène de Beauharnais, the emperor’s stepson. The prince fears that news of two murders—the brutal slaying of a Polish woman by a high-ranking French officer, who escaped capture after also killing a French soldier—will affect troop morale and compromise relations with the Poles, who are allied with the French. Margont must solve the crimes without attracting attention, but the steps Eugène has already taken to keep things quiet—such as burying the woman’s corpse and transferring witnesses—make his task more difficult. Cabasson strikes a good balance between battle scenes and the investigation, as Margont tries both to stay alive and track down a sadistic killer. (Nov.)
Reviewed on: 09/23/2013 Release date: 10/01/2013 Genre: Fiction
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