(Léa Matignon #1)

Author: Anna Jaquiery

Villeneuve, a suburb just outside Paris, has the highest crime rate in the country. The residents fear for their safety and their children’s futures and yet no-one in power seems to care about their problems. So when two boys are killed on the infamous City of Flowers housing estate, one Roma and the other French-Algerian, tensions immediately flare. Angered by this latest display of brutality in their neighbourhood and the authorities’ seeming indifference, the locals take matters into their own hands and mount protests in the streets. And amid the rising social unrest on the estate, Commandant Léa Matignon of the French criminal brigade is brought in to investigate the murders.

A woman of mixed heritage born in Guadeloupe, Léa has had to work hard to get to where she is now. And although she is an experienced detective, she will find herself tested to the limit with this case: balancing a demanding career with being a single mother to two grown children who still live at home, one of whom is struggling with their mental health.

Léa and her team must earn the trust of the victims’ families and the other residents on the estate if they want to solve the killings. As the street violence continues, and more blood is shed, Léa finds herself navigating the silence, blatant lies and half-truths of the City of Flowers, and the deeper, darker issues of identity and belonging with which she herself is only too familiar.

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