The Hanged Man of Saint-Pholien : Inspector Maigret

  • by Georges Simenon, Linda Coverdale (translator)
  • Narrated by Gareth Armstrong
  • Series: Inspector Maigret
  • 3 hrs and 33 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

Georges Simenon's haunting tale about the lengths to which people will go to escape from guilt, translated by Linda Coverdale as part of the new Penguin Maigret series.
A first ink drawing showed a hanged man swinging from a gallows on which perched an enormous crow. And there were at least twenty other etchings and pen or pencil sketches that had the same leitmotif of hanging.
On the edge of a forest: a man hanging from every branch. A church steeple: beneath the weathercock, a human body dangling from each arm of the cross... Below another sketch were written four lines from François Villon's Ballade of the Hanged Men.
On a trip to Brussels, Maigret unwittingly causes a man's suicide, but his own remorse is overshadowed by the discovery of the sordid events that drove the desperate man to shoot himself.
Georges Simenon was born in Liège, Belgium, in 1903. Best known in Britain as the author of the Maigret books, his prolific output of over 400 novels and short stories have made him a household name in continental Europe. He died in 1989 in Lausanne, Switzerland, where he had lived for the latter part of his life.
Linda Coverdale is the awarding-winning translator of many French works and has been honoured with the title of Chevalier of the Order of Arts and Letters for her contribution to French literature.


What the Critics Say

"Compelling, remorseless, brilliant" (John Gray)
"One of the greatest writers of the twentieth century... Simenon was unequalled at making us look inside, though the ability was masked by his brilliance at absorbing us obsessively in his stories" (Guardian)
"A supreme writer... unforgettable vividness" (Independent)


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

The follies of youth

If you could sum up The Hanged Man of Saint-Pholien in three words, what would they be?

Regret, Regret, Regret

What was one of the most memorable moments of The Hanged Man of Saint-Pholien?

Not spoiling it for everyone, and thus not giving any details, but has to be Maigrets unwitting involvement in the death of somebody, the conclusion of the story and the significance of the hanged man

What about Gareth Armstrong’s performance did you like?

He is a proper voice actor, who manages to convey the right atmosphere every time.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

The end - thinking of the children.

Any additional comments?

In some ways one of the more grim books of Simenon featuring Maigret, who this time finds himself more than a little involved in the whole sorry business and in a serious predicament as what to do in the end.

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- Monsieur Ghost

A compelling great listen

There is a moral line that is explored in the Hanged Man through the unearthing of why a poor young man commits suicide alone in a hotel room. it is hard to review without alighting upon spoilers... So, Simenon's Maigret uses silence to insist others speak, at one point until a bar closes at another until a candle burns down. These changes of pace from quietness to the immediacy of the moment (oh yes, what does happen in a thrilIer when the light goes out...) are compelling. I would love to see this as a series - with the mood of Branagh's Wallander or 'the killing'. It is very atmospheric, well read and with a denouement I just daren't spoil...
I enjoyed every minute and it left me thinking about Maigret's actions afterwards.
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- Catherine

Book Details

  • Release Date: 01-01-2014
  • Publisher: Audible Studios