Dial M for Merde

Stephen Clarke

pages September 2008 copies in English Commercial Fiction

“Combines the gaffes of Bridget Jones with the boldness of James Bond. Clarke’s sharp eye for detail and relentless wit make even the most quotidian task seem surreal.” – Publisher’s Weekly

Paul West is in the South of France, having received an offer he can’t refuse: two weeks in the sun, all expenses paid, with a beautiful blonde called Gloria Monday. Gloria, an oceanographer, is down south to report on caviar-trafficking, but Paul’s plan to enjoy a lazy fortnight of sun, sea and sturgeon eggs soon goes belly up, as he is sexually harassed by an English hen party and arrested by the French police.

It quickly becomes obvious that M, as Gloria likes to be known, is interested in something a lot more fishy than caviar. In fact she is part of a plot to assassinate France’s new President, and the police want Paul to go undercover for them. Paul has the choice –¬†ditch M and return to the comparative safety of his Parisian tearoom, or do his bit for the entente cordiale – and risk getting into some serious merde.¬†

Fans of Stephen Clarke’s Merde novels will probably guess which option he chooses. The potentially explosive finale plays out during a high society wedding in a fairy-tale chateau as Paul West goes into James Bond mode. But will he save la France – and get the girl? Inject some merde into the mix and nothing is certain …