Read The Dancer at the Gai-Moulin by Georges Simenon Siân Reynolds Online

Title : The Dancer at the Gai-Moulin
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780141393520
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 154 Pages
Status : Available For Download
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The Dancer at the Gai-Moulin Reviews

  • Ivonne Rovira
    2019-04-04 03:47

    Although 18-year-old René Delfosse comes from a wealthy family and 16-year-old Jean Chabot has a nice office job and lives at home, the feckless pair live beyond their means as they carouse night after night at the Gai-Moulin nightclub. The teenagers have taken to raiding tills and embezzling from the petty cash fund to keep themselves in drink and dancing. Set in Liège, Belgium, author Georges Simenon’s hometown, The Dancer at the Gai-Moulin begins with Delfosse and Chabot’s amateurish attempt to hide out at the Gai-Moulin after closing in an effort to steal from the cash register; however, what the boys find aren’t Belgian francs but a dead customer! But the next day, the corpse is found not at the Gai-Moulin, but in a wheeled laundry cart dropped off at the botanical gardens. How did that dead Ephraim Graphapoulos (for that’s his name) end up there? Who in Liège would want to kill the playboy son of a wealthy Athens banker? And why was Graphapoulos, who originally bought a ticket for a flight to London, in Liège at all?Despite its title, Adèle Bousquet, the beautiful woman whose job it is to dance with the male patrons at the Gai-Moulin and flirtatiously entice them to spend big on drinks, does not play a big role in The Dancer at the Gai-Moulin. In addition, Chief Inspector Maigret does not announce his presence until halfway into the book, and the book suffers for it (as occurs in Dame Agatha Christie’s books that delay the appearance of Hercule Poirot). Still, the roller-coaster ride that follows makes it all worth it for the reader, and, as always with Simenon, the novel explores the vagaries of human nature as well as any psychology text. A tangled case, indeed, The Dancer at the Gai-Moulin has plenty of surprises and an extremely satisfying ending. One of my favorite Maigret novels — which is high praise, indeed!

  • Stephanie
    2019-04-27 02:57

    If it's possible, I think I have at last found my favorite Maigret book. Ever. This is a faster paced yet easier to follow version of the best parts of Simenon's series. And while the classic Maigret features (the psychological issues surrounding the crime, a climactic and satisfying ending, a clueless but endearing local police officer) are still there, the novel certainly stands out for straying from the common path. First, Inspector Maigret doesn't even appear as a central character until almost 2/3 through the novel, leaving an interesting and refreshing narrative through other people's eyes for the majority of the story. It doesn't take place in Paris, the reader is not part of Maigret's knowledge of the case (or even how he became involved) until much later, and the reader is given a special insight into a few characters and their worlds that is not present in Simenon's other books. A great first read for anyone who knows nothing of Maigret, and a great refreshing change for anyone who (like me) enjoys the series but is looking for something slightly set apart from the rest.

  • Donna
    2019-04-23 04:54

    Maigret doesn't even appear until the middle of the book, but his presence is felt from the beginning. Published in 1931, there's a lot in this story which fits in with the goings-on of young people today -- too much money, too little direction, disenchantment with work, partying nights, looking for excitement in the wrong places. Throw in a little espionage and moving corpses and you have a really good mystery.

  • Nancy
    2019-04-21 04:08

    I've been aware of the prolific Georges Simenon for years but for some reason have not picked up his Maigret mysteries. Thank goodness for the "bag sale" at my local library! I came home with a small stack of them recently and this was the first one I picked up to read; perhaps the greatest pleasure it offered is that I know there are dozens and dozens and dozens more of Simenon's novels out there waiting for me.. . . The characterization is great;. . . the setting is so vivid I feel like I walked into the room;. . . and Inspector Maigret is a jewel.

  • Karmakosmik
    2019-04-17 00:49

    Indagine un po' deludente questa de "La Ballerina di Gai-Moulin", nel quale il nostro commissario si trova in trasferta a Liegi per indagare su una strano riccone di origine greca ritrovato poi morto in un cassa di vimini. Simenon in questo romanzo breve concede davvero poco spazio alle intuizioni di Maigret, e tra l'altro buona metà del romanzo è dedicata alla descrizione del locale e dei suoi due (poco) raccomandabili ragazzi che lo frequentano, Defosse e Chabot. L'entrata in scena del commissario è molto ritardata, ed anche l'indagine in realtà non c'è, poichè basta inscenare una piccola recita da parte di Maigret, che subito la verità viene subito alla luce. Il finale stesso è abbastanza deludente e la verità sul locale abbastanza improbabile e dai toni piuttosto frettolosi,come se l'autore non avesse avuto molta ispirazione nel lavorare a questo scritto. Insomma, un Maigret decisamente non a pieno giro.

  • Richard Brand
    2019-03-30 00:12

    Margret stories are short and involved, but most of the time the reader is not expected to be able to solve the crimes. At least, I have found that to be true. There is a "cult" following for Simenon and the writing of these stories. This one was about a night club that was the scene of a mystery and the death of a man. I would not need to say more as it might give it away, but there are young decadent teens, arrogant rich parent, bored foreigners, and a tired and middle age dancer. I keep reading these as they are short and they have intricate plots. I am not the great fan of Maigret as some people are.

  • Filippo Bossolino
    2019-04-17 00:11

    Questo Maigret si discosta dai precedenti per un aspetto abbastanza importante; Maigret entra in scena nella seconda metà del romanzo. Prima invece, largo spazio è dedicato ai due protagonisti, due giovani viveurs di Liegi, alle prese con bagordi serali e piccole truffe… Maigret c'è ma non si vede, nel senso che è una presenza costante ma non identificata… Finale un po' piatto, peccato, altrimenti da 5 stelle

  • Hans
    2019-03-28 03:00

    Simenon takes a different approach with this 10th novel in the Maigret series. (view spoiler)[The good Inspector does not appear until the middle of the book, but then it becomes apparent that he was roaming around for quite a while...and even controlling many of the actions with a heavy hand. (hide spoiler)] I felt it had a bit of an uneven pace, though many sections are some of my favorites in the 10 first novels. Good read.

  • Paul Secor
    2019-04-10 00:51

    One of my least favorite Maigrets. It's more of a procedural than others I've read, and lacks some of the psychological nuances of others in the series.

  • Gabriela
    2019-03-30 23:45

    My first novel by Georges Simenon. I do like his style. **I'll add more soon**

  • Monthly Book Group
    2019-04-18 06:50

    The host welcomed two guests: Professors Sian Reynolds and Peter France. The Maigret book chosen ("La Danseuse du Gai-Moulin" - published 1931 in France) had been recently translated into English by Sian as "The Dancer at the Gai Moulin". Peter was the editor of the “Oxford Guide to Literature in English Translation”. Thus the evening provided an opportunity not just to discuss the Maigret book but also the wider question of translations of literature into English. This had been an issue the Group had grappled with on a number of occasions when non-English books had been discussed.Simenon was born in 1903 and died in 1989. He led a colourful life, details of which you will find online. There were 193 novels written under his own name; 200 others written under 20 or so pseudonyms; 75 Maigret novels; four autobiographies; 21 volumes of memoirs. An average of four to five books a year; 80 pages a day; two weeks to write a book. At his death, world sales stood at more than 500 million copies in 55 languages, written in a vocabulary of no more than 2,000 words. And he claimed to have made love to 10,000 women, but was probably joking.In financial terms, Simenon’s move to Maigret was a great success. In 1925, his earnings were 42,671 francs. In 1929, they were 135,460 francs. By 1931, they were 310,561 francs. By the mid-1930s, he was earning about a million francs a year. The figures matter: Simenon is one of the few serious writers whose achievements can be counted in numbers: a writer with a quantitative career, as well as qualitative achievements.Penguin is now honouring Simenon’s spirit of excess with what seems like a lunatic project. It is publishing all 75 of the Maigret novels, one a month, in order and newly translated, over the next few years. It is the kind of project of which Simenon would heartily have approved.Each Maigret novel is presented as a battle, or a number of battles. There is the battle between characters that has led to the mysterious death with which each story opens; the battle between Maigret and other detectives, magistrates or politicians involved in the case (all obtuse, obstructive or incompetent); and the battle of wits between Maigret and the murderer. While all this is going on the inspector frequently has to struggle against appalling weather conditions, cycling tens of miles along muddy canal paths in pouring rain, fighting wind or snow, or labouring under suffocating heat. He is endlessly tempted by drink. Women seek to seduce him. Men try to buy him off. He is deprived of sleep, punched and shot at. He moves through crowds as though ‘fighting against a strong current’. Often it looks as though everything is ‘joining forces to unsettle him’, but he hangs on, his bull-like physique sustained by beer, sandwiches, pipe tobacco, the warm stove at police headquarters and the knowledge that at home his chaste wife is patiently preparing the kind of dish that won’t spoil however long it’s kept waiting. Then there is his genius.It doesn’t show. On the contrary, Maigret’s greatest stroke of genius is never to reveal his genius. There is no brilliant conversation. For the most part he appears boorish, uninterested, disgruntled, absolutely resistant to theory, suspicious of advanced forensics, ‘devoid of subtlety’. When asked what he’s thinking he invariably replies that he doesn’t think. Asked about ideas, he tells us he has no ideas. Presenting himself as impenetrable – a ‘lifeless bulk’, with eyes ‘dull as a cow’, ‘burly as a market porter’, ‘a pachyderm plodding inexorably toward its goal’ – he becomes more of a mystery than the mystery itself. The only intelligence that’s occasionally allowed to cross his face is a mocking irony. It’s this quality that will be fatal to the murderer, who is drawn into a battle of wills he can only lose.Maigret proceeds by enforced proximity. He goes to the scene of the crime, which usually takes place in a small, well-defined community, at the centre of which there is very likely a seedy hotel where Maigret will book a room. He hangs around bars with the suspects, visits their homes alone and uninvited, eats with them, walks and talks with them. He establishes who’s an insider and who’s an outsider, who’s sexually satisfied and who isn’t, which women are attractive and which plain or plain ugly, whose ambitions are thwarted, who has delusions of grandeur and power. If there’s a pretty maid he may ask her bluntly whose mistress she is. When he thinks he has his man he sticks to him like a limpet, waiting for him to break down. This is a figure who often turns up in a Maigret novel: the suspect who panics, is hysterical, can’t face the truth. The book we were discussing contained many of these themes though Maigret was absent, at least as a participant, for a considerable part of the book.Sian indicated that she had translated three Maigrets for the new Penguin series. All of them had headless women on the cover! Sian had attempted to use the language and slang of the 1930s, though this would have been very difficult for an earlier period, but no doubt she had used modern dialogue unconsciously. There was much detailed discussion of the principles and technique of translations. Several members queried why Sian had used certain words and expressions. Sian said a good translator should neither introduce nor suppress material. Translation required reading the text until you fully got it. You should always translate into your first language, though a few people were genuinely bilingual.Sian made the point that there was a huge difference, greater than in English, between spoken and written French. The French had a strong sense of decorum in written language. English also had more words from which to choose and made extensive use of idiom, slang and ambiguity. Some words used by Simenon were no longer used for the same meaning so old dictionaries were important sources......This is an extract from a review at Our reviews are also to be found at

  • Tom Donaghey
    2019-04-12 05:48

    MAIGRET AT THE GAI-MOULIN (Dancer at the Gai-Moulin) (Maigret #10, 1940) by Georges Simenon, depicts two teens falling into trouble at the seedy nightclub Gai-Moulin. They plan to rob the till after closing time but that goes out the window when they stumble across a dead body in the club. But the next day the body is found stuffed in a lidded wicker basket at the zoo. The dead man was a rich playboy, there is no police search at the club, and the boys are shocked. This is a classic mystery with almost no leads for the local police to follow, no suspects, not even a crime scene. And there is a large, mysterious stranger who might be the killer, but no one can find him. In a twist on most detective stories, Maigret doesn't appear until well into the second third of the book. We know he is going to solve the case, but being in jail himself makes that more difficult than usual. Simenon has created an enduring character and threaded him into a massive series of puzzles, any one of which is a worth while read, entertaining as all heck, and puzzling to the end. This is not the best but is still a great throwback read.

  • Andy Weston
    2019-04-13 04:53

    Two unpleasant 18 year olds are drinking at a less than glamorous night club that they attend often. It is not busy and they chat with the dancers. The atmosphere created in the Gai-Moulin is sensational, to the extent that the reader feels they are there, drinking at the bar, observing. A broad-shouldered stranger is at the bar also, as is a 'Turk' as the boys believe. There is tension, the sniff of murder is in the air. This is my first Maigret novel and I wonder how I waited so long. I have read several of Simenon's stand alone and this almost is that, as Maigret does not appear until well into the second half of the book. This is noir, the key characters are nasty, and the setting in Liege is in half light, almost all the action takes place at night. It's also a detective story, but a different type of one, as Simenon's strength is in the build-up rather than the denouement. Certainly the 'reveal' is compelling and with twists, but the real magic of the book is in creating the scene.

  • Laura
    2019-04-06 02:55

    Deux jeunes noceurs endettés – un bourgeois désaxé et le fils d'un employé – fréquentent à Liège « Le Gai-Moulin », une boîte de nuit où ils courtisent l'entraîneuse Adèle. A la fin d'une soirée qu'elle a passée, à une table voisine des jeunes gens, en compagnie d'un Levantin arrivé le jour même dans la ville, Delfosse et Chabot se laissent enfermer dans la cave de l'établissement afin de s'emparer de la recette. Dans l'obscurité, ils entr'aperçoivent ce qu'ils croient être un cadavre, celui du Levantin ; ils prennent la fuite.A movie was made based on this book: réalisé par Jean-Paul Sassy en 1981. Alec Jean Richard (Commissaire Maigret), Annick Tanguy (Madame Maigret).

  • Jrobertus
    2019-04-19 03:55

    The version I read was called Maigret at the "Gai Moulin" but the Dancer is the original French title. Anyway, this is a bit unusual in that M does not make an appearance until 2/3 of the way through the book. Two Belgian youths in Liege are experimenting with a life of dissipation. When trying to rob a night club, the Gai-Moulin, they see a body on the floor and panic. One boy is distraught, but the spoiled son of a local business man goes another way, taking up with a dancer from the club. The murdered man is a wealthy Greek, but what is he doing there? Who is the mysterious "broad shouldered" man who was tailing him? Can you guess? I did. M is insightful as ever and pretty bossy to the officials of a foreign country, but what can you say? He is Maigret.

  • Gabriella Cseh
    2019-04-08 04:00

    A könyv eleje szerintem kicsit tovább lett nyújtva, mint kell, nem értettem, hol van Maigret végre? Mikor jelenik meg? És azt mondtam magamnak: Gabi, nagyon régen olvastad ezt a könyvet, ha semmi nem rémlik belőle. :-)Valahogy hiába jelent azonban meg Maigret, nekem az események nem pörögtek fel. Nem éreztem azt a kisugárzást, amit eddig minden Simenon minden krimijében éreztem. Eddig pár oldal után ott éreztem magam a helyszínen, most ez elmaradt.Összességében azt mondhatom, három csillagot adhatok rá. Sajnos csak ennyit.

  • Nicholas Story, solicitor
    2019-04-14 03:10

    The perfect read for a journey to Bristol and back - gripping, entertaining, but not too challenging. And at 150-odd pages, I finished it whilst passing through Slough.A great novel if written by anyone other than Simenon. As far as the great man is concerned, this is just another very good offering. It's hard to say much without spoiling the intricacies of the plot, but what was a fine touch was for Maigret to have made no entry into the novel until halfway through.

  • Hornthesecond
    2019-04-19 05:11

    The first Maigret I've read, having become interested to read the books since the new TV version with Rowan Atkinson. I enjoyed the story, a fast - paced whodunnit which I read quickly, both because it was short, but also because it was full of suspense and held my interest to the end. I look forward to reading more Maigret.

  • Kim
    2019-04-08 06:54

    So many twists in this story it made it even more fast paced than usual.In this one there has been a murder of a mysterious visitor to the Gai-Moulin club, who has done this and who is involved? This story revolves mainly around Jean and Renee, who frequent the club and Adele one of the dancers at the club. What do these 3 have to hide?

  • Hans Ostrom
    2019-04-14 22:59

    Of course, Simenon and his detective Maigret never disappoint, but this one is especially good because of the characters and the particular slices of Parisian social strata and of police life as well.

  • Hugh Laybourn
    2019-03-27 07:08

    at first i thought, is this broad shoul dered guy Maigret, then, of course not, then, surprise!

  • Tintaglia
    2019-04-05 03:02

    4.5Simenon conquista. Sempre.

  • Karla Mallma Soriano
    2019-04-11 23:46

    El comisario Maigret esta vez se lucio....Su personaje no aparece hasta bien avanzado el libro...y yo ya decia esto me huele raro!!! ja,ja,ja,ja.Recomendable!

  • Gary
    2019-04-04 03:10

    A different plot for the inspector's adventures. The price of the rest of the books in the series is higher. I will try ordering them from thriftbooks!

  • F.J.
    2019-04-23 07:14


  • Ellison
    2019-04-26 01:11

    Very weak and contrived plot. Maigret is inept and heavy handed, not ruminative and clever as he usually is. But easy to read and diverting at least.

  • Riccardo
    2019-03-30 05:59

    gran colpo di scena. superbe

  • Pinko Palest
    2019-04-13 03:58

    Very good on the suspense, some neat bits of humour too. Highly enjoyable, like most of the Maigret stories, but is not as atmospheric as some

  • Carlo
    2019-04-08 01:53

    Con questo romanzo Maigret arriva in doppia cifra e così il suo autore decide di variare la ricetta: se il quadro d’insieme resta simile nel suo unire ipocrisie e piccole avidità, la struttura al contrario cambia. Il commissario entra in scena solo a metà dello percorso, mentre nei capitoli precedenti è un’ombra che compare e ricompare, assai più minacciosa che rassicurante, contribuendo a minare il sistema nervoso dei protagonisti. Che, in un ingranaggio abbastanza corale, sono soprattutto i due adolescenti sulla strada del vizio, l’appartenente all’alta borghesia che trascina il figlio della piccola in una visione forse stereotipata che però va a stemperarsi in un inconsueto gioco di barbe finte le cui esistenze sono in qualche modo vicine a quelle dei mediocri impiegati dello spionaggio descritti da Le Carrè. L’ambientazione in un night di quart’ordine è prettamente simenoniana, per non parlare dell’appartamento della ballerina/prostituta di cui al titolo (meno bella ma somigliante alla sua omonima de ‘All’Insegna di terranova’) e delle scene che vi si svolgono, ma la commistione di atmosfere contribuisce a dare alla vicenda un inconfondibile tocco noir che mette in secondo piano l’investigazione vera e propria, peraltro costruita con mano brillante. Non è una novità, invece, che Maigret vada in trasferta: la storia è ambientata a Liegi, dove già avveniva lo scioglimento de ‘L'impiccato di Saint-Pholien’, e l’impressione è che, ancora una volta utilizzando elementi autobiografici, la circostanza serva allo scrittore per regolare alcuni conto in sospeso con la poco amata patria prima di trasferirsi definitivamente in Francia. La città è descritta difatti come avvolta da un manto di irrimediabile provincialismo che non risparmia polizia e poliziotti, tanto che Maigret pare divertirsi a mettere in difficoltà l’ispettore che lo ospita (o, per meglio dire, di cui usurpa il ruolo) e i suoi storditi sottoposti (per non accennare alla pesante caratterizzazione riservata al petulante poliziotto che vuole piazzare le sue pipe sottocosto).

  • Rodolfo Fioribello
    2019-04-15 07:04

    Che dire? Essendo un fan di Maigret non posso scrivere altro se non che mi è piaciuto molto, in particolare perché in questa avventura il commissario entra in campo a racconto ampiamente in corso e decide di comportarsi fuori dagli schemi canonici pur di riuscire a smascherare il colpevole