The seminal detective novel by Émile Gaboriau, who was hailed by André Gide as“the father of all current detective fiction”
Policemen patrolling the streets of Paris hear a commotion in a nearby bar. When they go inside to investigate, they find 3 men dead and 1 gravely wounded. The injured man, taken into custody by the police, claims to have murdered the others in self-defense, but he dies without giving any further information. Who was this man? His attire is that of a soldier, but his long, unkempt hair suggests he led a different kind of life. Without knowing the true identities of the murderer or his victims, how can this case be solved? It is up to the immensely perceptive Monsieur Lecoq and his uncanny powers of observation to solve this tangled homicide.
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Émile Gaboriau (1832-1873) was French writer and journalist best known as the creator of the Monsieur Lecoq series of detective novels, including The Widow Lerouge (1866) and Monsieur Lecoq (1869). Inspired by the real-life historical figure of Eugène François Vidocq, a former criminal who founded and served as the first director of the Sûretè, France’s national police force, Lecoq was a major influence on the character of Sherlock Holmes.