Literary chiaroscurist* Bayard's 1818 Paris, at the peak (or is
it the depth?) of the Restoration after the bloody Revolution, comes alive on
the page as Eugène François Vidocq, the father of modern police detection,
unravels a complex knot of crimes that could ultimately produce
Louis XVI and Marie-Antoinette's young son, long thought to have died while
imprisoned in the Black Tower (part of the notorious
Temple prison in Paris) in 1795. If the person in question is indeed the
lost/reputedly deceased dauphin (heir to the French throne) he could displace
King Louis XVIII, threatenign his plans for the future of France.
Needless to say tensions run high as red herring after red herring gets thrown
into the path of forensic genius Vidocq. Beginning with the murder of an
unidentified man who was killed in an alley not far from...
Beyond the Book
The Vidocq Society
"Legend has it that if you give Vidocq two or three of the details
surrounding a given crime, he will give you back the man who did it---before
you've had time to blink. More than that, he'll describe the man for you, give
you his most recent address, name all his known conspirators, tell you his
favorite cheese. So compendious is his memory that a full half of Paris imagines
him to be omniscient and wonders if his powers weren't given him by Satan." -
Hector Carpentier speaking in The Black Tower.
What red-blooded criminal investigator wouldn't want to be just like the
legendary Vidocq? Count former FBI agent Bill Fleisher, co-founder of the
Vidocq Society among the...