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In Banon, a small, peaceful village in upper Provence, the local community's principal source of income is the cultivation of truffles. Outsiders rarely venture to this remote region, but a small group of society's drop-outs have chosen to set up home on the outskirts of the village, and trouble ensues. When one of them is found dead in the freezer of a local hotel, and when a further five bodies are discovered drained of blood in a family vault in the cemetery, it takes all Commissaire Laviolette's considerable resources to unravel crimes that have been committed in a climate of age-old superstition and secret animosity. Not since Jean Giono has any writer been able to capture the authentic flavour, spirit and traditions of Provence.
Pierre Magnan was born in Manosque in 1922 and has rarely left his native Provence. In 1943, during the Occupation, he fought with the Resistance in the Isere, and in 1946 he published his first novel, L'Aube Insolite. During his lifetime he published over twenty novels, four of which have so far been translated into English. He died in May 2012, at the age of 89.