Wednesday, 7 March 2018

Monsieur Pamplemousse's Leica and Trinovid

A very short Book Review of a fairly short, old, book by the late Michael Bond published in 1989 which has just come to my attention through a gift of Detective novels from an old friend. In short, a light hearted romp called 'Monsieur Pamplemousse Aloft.'  The sort of thing that the late Peter Sellers would have rejoiced in playing.

The story is of a touring restaurant critic based on the Michelin pattern of grading by awarding 'stars' in the form of 'stockpot' symbols in a food guide. This one happens to be a retired detective with a large bloodhound that follows him everywhere. Our usual brand of German camera follows him almost as faithfully as do his Leitz binoculars. Subsequent adventures include an encounter with an India Rubber lady and her rubber crocodile with whom the detective becomes inextricably entangled in a small Circus caravan! Also, a unit of the British Special Forces who are dressed as Nuns- an efficient disguise seeing that the scene is set in Brittany at the time of the pardon. Subsequently an Anglo-French Dirigible is saved from terrorist attack based in a fibreglas menhir-get the drift? He uses a motor drive to map the coast and the following brief extract shows,I think, some real research has been undertaken.A quick and easy read that was most enjoyable.

In an earlier book( Monsieur P and the Secret Mission) the Leitz Binoculars are seen again-in a lockable case-and a specific reference is made to the use of a Leica R4 with extra lenses.A very British view of France but a superior light read of some humour and the author has done his homework!

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