Short, Sharp Interview: Sally Pane, translator of Red-handed in Romanée-Conti, by Jean-Pierre Alaux and Noël Balen.

Anne Trager, Le French Book, Paul D Brazill, Sally Pane, short sharp interviews

red-handed-in-romanee-contiPDB: Can you pitch Red-Handed in Romanée-Conti in 25 words or less?

Amid blackmail and betrayal, a murder victim is discovered in the ruins of an abbey as a catastrophic hailstorm threatens Burgundy’s prized vineyards.

PDB: Which music, books, films, songs or television shows do you wish you had written?

Daphne du Maurier’s “Don’t Look Now, or Nicholas Roeg’s film adaptation of it. I recently sleuthed around Venice to find the filming locations for the movie and still get chills down my spine from this compelling psychological thriller.

PDB: Which of your books do you think would make good films or TV series?

Actually, the Winemaker Detective series, including Red-Handed in Romanée-Conti, has been adapted for a TV series in France. The French TV versions differ sometimes in plot, but it’s delightful to see scenery of the myriad vineyards and wine-growing areas of France on display.winemaker-detective

PDB: Who are your favourite writers?

Iris Murdoch, Nabokov, Thomas Hardy, Patricia Highsmith, Geoff Dyer

PDB: What’s your favourite joke?

My own: I must admit, I tend to blame my mistakes on other people, but I get that from my mother.

PDB: What’s your favourite song?

Starman [David Bowie], Beeswing [Richard Thompson], It’s been a long time coming [Sam Cooke]

PDB: What’s on the cards?

Now that Red-Handed in Romanée-Conti has been released, I’m working on translating another Winemaker Detective mystery about Chateau d’Yquem. Believe it or not, it isn’t based on the LVHM take-over, although you’ll definitely understand how these things can happen the more you read these mysteries. After that, I am translating an intriguing story involving a famous French actor who, while trying to create a great vintage, faces a heart-breaking tragedy.sally-pane

 PDB: Anything else?

Thank you, Paul!

Bio: Sally Pane has translated several books in the Winemaker Detective series [written by Jean-Pierre Alaux and Noël Balen] for Le French Book, including Nightmare in Burgundy, Deadly Tasting, Cognac Conspiracies, Mayhem in Margaux, Flambé in Armagnac, Montmartre Mysteries, Late Harvest Havoc and Tainted Tokay.


Coming Soon: Crossing the Line by Frédérique Molay

Le French Book

french bookAnother Paris Homicide Mystery in Bookstores on September 23

Crossing the Line by Frédérique Molay

Just how far would you go for your loved ones? It’s Christmas in Paris and Chief of Police Nico Sirsky is back, in love and rearing to go, when he’s handed an odd case. He and his team of crack homicide detectives follow the clues from an apparent suicide, to an apparent accident, to an all-out murder as an intricate machination starts breaking down. Just how far can despair push a man? How clear is the line between good and evil?

“Procedural fans will appreciate the fresh take.” –Booklist

“For readers who enjoy a low-key approach with detailed descriptions, Molay is just the ticket.” – Publishers Weekly

“A highly entertaining and intellectually stimulating read… unreservedly recommended.” –Thinking about Books

 CSI Paris, anyone? A new Paris Homicide Mystery is out #goodread

Looking for a good read set in #France? “Procedural fans will appreciate the fresh take.”

Love #France? Love #mysteries? “Molay is just the ticket.” Start reading it:

“A highly entertaining and intellectually stimulating read… unreservedly recommended.” Read it now:

“This series just gets better as Sirsky continues to grow and evolve. Highly recommended.” #bookreview

Here’s some reader love about a new mystery novel set in Paris: “The first book in the series was one of my top ten reads of 2013 and this book will most likely be among the outstanding mysteries on my list for 2014.” Check it out here:

Love Paris? Love mysteries? Here’s another Paris Homicide Mystery by Frédérique Molay, from Le French Book. Don’t miss it. Start reading it here:  

Guest Blog: The Consequences of War by David Khara

David Khara, GUEST BLOGS, Le French Book

DavidKharaDavid Khara is the author of The Bleiberg Project (, an adrenaline-pumping conspiracy thriller based on World War II and its consequences in today’s world. This fast-pace novel full of humor and humanity is the first in the three-part Consortium thriller series, and comes out in paperback on July 15. The book was an instant success in France, catapulting the author to the ranks of the country’s top thriller writers. It is published in English by the mystery and thriller publisher Le French Book (

I have always had a passion for history. I firmly believe the past enlightens the path to the future. It is all about what mistakes have been made and how to avoid making them again. Before starting my work on the Consortium thriller series, I thought I had fairly good knowledge of World War II. I really did. It turned out I was wrong.

The series is about experiments done on human beings done during World War II and the Cold War and their consequences nowadays. Each book treats different aspects of these experiments. A secret organization, the Consortium, acts as a puppeteer, pulling strings behind the scenes. Using this background, I tell the story of ordinary people facing extraordinBielberg-Project_cover_200x300ary, out of their league, events. This is what history is about. It strikes people like you and me, and forces us to make choices, to give up, or take a stand. Nobody is born a hero. Anybody can become one.

All the characters in the book were based on survivors’ testimonials. In fact, the idea of The Project Bleiberg came to me after hearing the testimony of a woman who survived the death camps, Simone Lagrange. Three things struck me during the interview. The first one was her sharp sense of humor. She said that prisoners inside the camp made jokes whenever they could. Humanity cannot be destroyed as long as laughter is possible. It becomes an act of resistance. The second thing was her will to survive, no matter the obstacles, no matter the horrors she would have to go through. And finally, she was the living proof that to remember and understand history is the best, and maybe the only way, to avoid some mistakes being made again. The book tries to honor these three points.

le french book

Short Sharp Interview: David Khara

David Khara, Le French Book, short sharp interviews

DavidKharaPDB: Can you pitch  your latest project in 25 words or less?

The third book in the Consortium thriller series was just published in France. It’s The Bleiberg Project hero’s last stand, between modern conspiracy and his past in a resistance commando after he escaped the death camps.

PDB: Which music, books, films or television shows have floated your boat recently?

Begging by Frankie Vallie and the Four Seasons and Aerosmith’s Living on the edge were my companions while I wrote the Consortium Series.

As for movies, except for The Hobbit, lots of them are now lost at sea since I found so many disappointing and threw them overboard. Luckily enough, some TV shows—Justified and Walking Dead are still on the boat.

As for books, I spent so much time working on mine that I can’t open one without shaking and crying, so I’ll wait a little bit.

PDB: Is it possible for a writer to be an objective reader?

I don’t think so, at least not for me. I never comment or give advice about fellow writers’ work. Also, I spend so much time trying to improve my writing skills that I don’t have much time to read.

PDB: Do you have any interest in writing for films, theatre or television?

Actually, movie and TV writing are my main interests. I’ve already worked on a screenplay with the successful French director Alain Berberian, and I loved it. Since The Bleiberg Project is on its way to the big screen, I also get to look at the screenplays and that’s pretty amazing.

PDB: How much research goes into your writing?

A lot! For the Consortium Thriller series, I estimate research time at a thousand hours. And I used maybe 10% in the books. The other 90% helped me catch up with the global mood and atmosphere of the period.

PDB: How useful or important are social media for you?

Writing is a solitary activity. Sharing and meeting people because of a book is the best reward for a writer. Also, it gives me the opportunity to show my readers I’m still an ordinary guy. Unlike the hero of The Bleiberg Project, I have not been genetically modified. Not that I know of anyway.

PDB: What’s on the cards for the rest of  2013?Bielberg-Project_cover_1562x2500

First, some sleep. Then, I’ll write the second book of Dawn’s Early Light, my other series (which is only available in French for now), and some of my books will be released in Netherlands, Korea and Québec. I’ll also try to get some rest because 2014s schedule is already full, with the Bleiberg movie, a graphic novel adaptation, and lots of fun things to come.

PDB: Where can people find out more about your work?

For information in English you can start with the author page at Le French Book. I also regularly post on Le French Book’s blog, I have my own blog that I’m starting to feed in English, and check out my Facebook fan page under the name David S. Khara. I interact with my readers on a daily basis. I love writing and talking in English, so you’re all very welcome!

Bio: David Khara is the author of The Bleiberg Project, an adrenaline-pumping conspiracy thriller based on World War II and its consequences in today’s world. This fast-pace novel full of humor and humanity is the first in the three-part Consortium Thriller series. The book was an instant success in France (over 100,000 copies sold), catapulting the author to the ranks of the country’s top thriller writers. It was published in English by Le French Book, a digital-first publisher specializing in best-selling mysteries and thrillers from France.

Short, Sharp Interview: Anne Trager of Le French Book

Anne Trager, Le French Book, noir nation, short sharp interviews

PDB: What is Le French Book ?

The crème de la crime from France. We are very focused on bringing great mysteries and thrillers by French writers to new readers across the English-speaking world. Think a serial killer in Paris, deceit and treachery in vineyards, rolling countryside filled with hidden secrets. Think also, wine-sipping freelance spies based in the French capital, and intrigue straight out of World War II. Clearly, there are lots of good reads being published in France these days, and our motto is if we love it, we’ll translate it. Our books are direct-to-digital translations.

PDB: Who are the criminal masterminds behind Le French Book?

Le French Book is a crime of passion. Its founder Anne Trager loves France so much she has lived there for 27 years and just can’t seem to leave. What keeps her there is a uniquely French mix of pleasure seeking and creativity. Well, that and the wine. After 25 years experience in the translation business and 15 in publishing and corporate communications, she woke up one morning compelled to drop everything and bring her vices home through the books she love to read. Her cohort in crime, Fabrice Neuman, is guilty of being French and of knowing everything there is to know about ebooks. The core team includes Ohio-based, red-pen slinging editor Amy Richards. Anne_Trager_founder_Le_French_Book_HD

PDB: Which authors are involved in Le French Book?

The list just keeps growing. We started with master French crime writer Sylvie Granotier; Epicurean book and TV series writers Jean-Pierre Alaux and Noël Balen; and Frédérique Molay, who not only is a huge bestseller, but has been called “the French Michael Connelly.” We then added seven of France’s top writers: Tatiana de Rosnay (she is the country’s most-read author worldwide), Didier Van Cauwelaert (he won the extremely prestigious Goncourt prize), Yann Queffélec (so did he), Christine Orban, Harold Cobert, Daniel Picouly and Irène Frain. And our most recent additions are David Khara, who wrote an instant bestseller that catapulted him into the ranks of France’s top thriller writers, and Bernard Besson, who has written his fair share of prizewinning thrillers, and used to head up the French intelligence services.

PDB: Which books have been published so far?

The Paris Lawyer by Sylvie Granotier, a prize-winning psychological thriller that doubles as a legal procedural. As a child, she was the only witness to a heinous crime. Now, Catherine Monsigny is an ambitious rookie attorney in Paris. Her first major felony case takes her to a peaceful village in central France where her own past comes back to haunt her. The story follows Catherine’s determined search for the truth in both her case TheParisLawyer_cover_F-2-225x300and her own life. Who can she believe? Can you ever escape your past?

Treachery in Bordeaux by Jean-Pierre Alaux and Noël Balen, a classic whodunit set in French wine country, made for television in France. It is the first in the 20-book Winemaker Detective series. In this one, strange things are happening at the Moniales Haut-Brion wine estate. Who would want to target this esteemed vintner? World-renowned wine specialist turned gentleman detective Benjamin Cook and his sidekick Virgile Lanssien search the city and the vineyards for answers.

The 7th Woman by Frédérique Molay. This police procedural won one France’s most prestigious crime fiction awards and was voted Best Crime Fiction Novel of the Year. There is no rest for Paris’s top criminal investigation division, La Crim’. Who is preying on women in the French capital? How can he kill again and again without leaving any clues? A serial killer is taking pleasure in a macabre ritual that leaves the police on tenterhooks. Chief of Police Nico Sirsky–a super cop with a modern-day real life, including an ex-wife, a teenage son and a budding love story, races against the clock to solve the murders as they get closer and closer to his inner circle. Will he resist the pressure?

52 Serial Shorts by Tatiana de Rosnay, Didier Van Cauwelaert, Yann Queffélec, Christine Orban, Harold Cobert, Daniel Picouly and Irène Frain. This is a collection of weird and wild seven-author short stories. You can sign up on our site to get them free in daily or weekly installments (, or purchase the ebooks (the first volumes are scheduled for release next week).

– In April, we’ll be releasing The Bleiberg Project. Self-pitying golden boy trader Jay Novacek is having a bad week when he finds himself thrown into a race to save the world from a horrific conspiracy straight our of the darkest hours of history. Could secret human experimentations be carried out worldwide? Can they be stopped?

– Right now, world-acclaimed translator Julie Rose is busy working on Greenland: The Thriller. The Arctic ice caps are breaking up. Europe and the East Coast of the United States brace for a tidal wave. Meanwhile, former French intelligence officer John Spencer Larivière, his karate-trained, steaming Eurasian partner Victoire, and their bisexual computer-genius sidekick Luc pick up an ordinary freelance assignment that quickly leads them into the glacial silence of the great north, where a merciless war is being waged for control of discoveries that will change the future of humanity.

PDB: Where can we find out more about Le French Book?

Find out more about us here.

Follow us on Twitter @lefrenchbook

Like us on Facebook

Sign up to receive our latest news and deals:

PDB: Is there anything else you think we should know about Le French Book?

Well, noir was a French word 😉

This interview first appeared over at Noir Nation.

le french book 2


I Interview Le French Book’s Anne Treger

Anne Trager, Interviews, Le French Book, noir nation

‘PDB: What is Le French Book ?

Anne Treger: The crème de la crime from France. We are very focused on bringing great mysteries and thrillers by French writers to new readers across the English-speaking world. Think a serial killer in Paris, deceit and treachery in vineyards, rolling countryside filled with hidden secrets. Think also, wine-sipping freelance spies based in the French capital, and intrigue straight out of World War II. Clearly, there are lots of good reads being published in France these days, and our motto is if we love it, we’ll translate it. Our books are direct-to-digital translations.’

Read the rest of the interview over at NOIR NATION.