French Crime Novel with a Philosophical Touch


Fred Vargas

Fred Vargas is a pseudonym for a very popular female French author. The Chalk Circle Man is the first novel in the series about Commissaire Jean-Baptiste Adamsberg and it received the International Dagger Award in 2009. Vargas is also a historian and archaeologist.

The Chalk Circle Man

Someone is painting blue round circles on sidewalks at night in Paris which confuses the citizens, especially Commissaire Adamsberg who gets particularly suspicious. What does the person want? Everything escalates when they find a dead woman in one of the circles.

Very French

This novel is a bit weird. The characters are a little twisted and philosophical like caricatures. It feels very French and I like it. You get a bit of an Amelie from Montmartre vibe, but more somber. There is something about the French and their philosophical thinking; it is like it starts in the womb. Either way, I am now interested in reading the rest of the novels in the series. Vive la France!


Original title in French: ┬áL’Homme aux cercles bleus


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