Skip to main content Skip to footer site map

Le French Book Releases New Winemaker Detective Mystery


New York, New York

Mystery and thriller publisher Le French Book releases a new Winemaker Detective mystery this week, one set in Cognac, home of the world-famous brandy of the same name.

According to the Wine Enthusiast, "From Emperor Napoleon to rap star Nas, Cognac has serious clout among discerning drinkers... Cognac is a hot commodity with crossover appeal for wine drinkers." French authors Jean-Pierre Alaux and Noël Balen are not ones to disagree. Their most recent Winemaker Detective mystery to be published in English is called Cognac Conspiracies.

The heirs to one of the oldest Cognac estates in France face a hostile takeover by foreign investors. Renowned wine expert Benjamin Cooker is called in to audit the books. In what he thought was a sleepy provincial town, he is stonewalled, crosses paths with his first love, and stands up to high-level state officials keen on controlling the buyout. Meanwhile, irresistible Virgile mingles with the local population until a drowning changes the stakes.

This amateur detective/cozy mystery, translated by Boulder-based translator Sally Pane, has a distinctly French flavor to it, as readers get an inside view of the French wine and, in this case, spirits, industry with a gentle mystery, and a lot of atmosphere.

Click here to find it at a local bookstore.

Twenty-two books have been published in France in the Winemaker Detective series, which is also a hit television series in its fourth season.

"A delightful, frequently tongue-in-cheek excursion through the mysteries and politics of cognac production." -Live Journal

"So evocative of France, you can visit it in an afternoon without leaving home."

"The Winemaker Detective Mystery series is a new obsession."

"The descriptions of cognac and cigar scents and flavors drew me in as if I, too, were a connoisseur." -Librarian review

"Will whet the appetites of lovers of Iron Chef and Murder, She Wrote." -Booklist (series)

Books in the series already in English
Treachery in Bordeaux (9781939474025) takes readers behind the scenes of a grand cru wine estate that has fallen victim to either negligence or sabotage. World-renowned winemaker turned gentleman detective Benjamin Cooker sets out to find out what happened and why. Who would want to target this esteemed vintner?

In Grand Cru Heist (9781939474049), in between a glass of Vouvray and a bottle of Saint-Émilion, the Winemaker Detective and his assistant Virgile turn PI to solve two murders and very peculiar heist. Who stole those bottles of grand cru classé?

In Nightmare in Burgundy (9781939474056), the Winemaker Detective leaves his native Bordeaux for a dream wine-tasting trip. His stay turns into a troubling nightmare when he stumbles upon a mystery revolving around messages from another era.

In Deadly Tasting (9781939474216), a serial killer stalks Bordeaux. To understand the wine-related symbolism, the local police call on the famous wine critic Benjamin Cooker. The investigation leads them to the dark hours of France's history, as the mystery thickens among the once-peaceful vineyards of Pomerol.

And now, Cognac Conspiracies.
By Jean-Pierre Alaux and Noël Balen; translated by Sally Pane-published by Le French Book-ISBNs: 9781939474339 (ebook)/ 9781939474322 (trade paperback)/ 9781939474346 (hardcover)-First published in French (Dernier coup de Jarnac, Librairie Arthème Fayard, Paris)-Release date: February 18, 2015

About Le French Book
Le French Book ( is a New York-based publisher specialized in great reads from France, with a growing catalog of top contemporary mysteries and thrillers with a French touch. An IPS publisher.

©2015 Le French Book, Inc. All rights reserved. Information is subject to change without notice.

Related Articles View More Books Stories

Featured on Stage Door

Shoutouts, Classes & More

More Hot Stories For You