By Douglas Spencer Wallis
Britsher Basil Ackroyd, mayor of the French town of Durac, is in trouble. He owes his Italian uncle a lot of money. An insurance investigator has questions regarding a fire. One of his buildings is desired by the local constabulary and Basil’s wife, but is reported to be available as a refuge for illegal immigrants. An old ‘friend’ shows up with another scheme to pay owed debts…but winds up dead instead. Meanwhile, a young woman in the government is outraged at the reports of illegals and plans to make Basil pay.
Add in a Russian and a Chinese and this makes for a crazy complex concoction. The plot jumps from item to item so try to keep up.
Basil Ackroyd: British, mayor of the French town of Durac, smokes cigars, has a sister, owns a motorbike, rotund stomach, has children, has a mustache
Elizabeth Lindy Ackroyd: Basil’s wife, company owner
Sid: cafe owner
Jack Waldo ‘Ginger’ Frampton: drives a Mercedes truck, divorced
Leticia Frampton: obese, Ginger’s sister
Claudine Dubois: insurance investigator
Abdul Bin Avay: has some gold in his teeth, dark skin, notary public
Jean Paul Beauclaire: has the rank of Captain
Everybody in this book is nuts. Basil reminds me a bit of Cleese’s Basil Fawlty. Not many physical descriptions for characters, but I could get a vague sense of them through their personalities.
Basil’s secretary’s voice comes through because of her personality. So does Leticia’s. Some conversations tend to go back and forth at a rapid pace like an old radio comedy. Near the end there are lengthy explanatory conversations.
This reads like a comedy show. There’s some corny humor, prat fall type antics and a roundabout way of getting to the end. It’s a different read than most. With so many characters with so many connections, it took me awhile to get into it and even when I started too, it veered off around another corner.
Still a pretty good read. I debated awhile on what rank to give it but decided that the clean writing (I didn’t see mistakes in grammar, spelling, etc) earned it: