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Publication in France:
03 November 2016

304 pages

[The Valley of Shadows

Xavier-Marie BONNOT

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René Vasseur is a machine, a battle-hardened individual who has waged many a war and who now goes by a different name - he is a legionnaire.

After an absence of twenty years, he returns to his native country having received a letter from his father, whose days are numbered. René wants to be there for his final days, or that at least is the official story, for nobody knows what the true story is regarding René or the death of his brother: Rémy Vasseur, 18 years old. Murdered during the strikes of October 1985.

Twenty years on, the same protagonists are present, including his old friends, the woman whom he loved, his enemies and the violence of this little village which is on a par with the worst conflicts that he has witnessed around the world. Among these suspects, who have been waiting for his return for justice to be done, and against this backdrop of yesteryear, he eventually manages to find the guilty party. And at the same time, he finds that part of himself again which the death of his brother had all but extinguished.
Xavier-Marie Bonnot's prose is darker than ever as he describes this steep-sided valley, its social tensions and the secrets which people would wish to bury but which in fact are handed down the generations...
More information in french

"Ancien légionnaire au cuir épais et au coeur empli de haine, René Vasseur revient dans son village natal, au fond d'une vallée industrielle dévastée par la crise. ll y a plus de vingt ans que son frère y a trouvé la mort, assassiné lors d'une grève. Est-ce la vengeance qui I'anime et motive ce retour ? Sa famille, ses anciens amis, ou ennemis, voudraient bien le savoir... Entre luttes sociales et secrets bien enfouis, Xavier-Marie Bonnot nous livre un polar tendu à I'extrême, aux personnages bien campés."FMP Mutualité 13/12/2016

"L'auteur, Xavier-Marie Bonnot, dépeint habilement cet univers à la fois grandiose, cerné par les montagnes et sinistré sur le plan social, et les états d'âme d'un homme perdu."CFDT magazine 02/01/2017