In the 18th quarter of Paris, between the districts of the Goutte d’or and that of La Chapelle, drug reigns. Poverty and exclusion have colonized the place while rats took over bins, gutters, and buildings … All traficking is controlled by two black gangs : the Salt Men gang and the Men’s Men gang. Max Mpétigo is a metis, expert in industrial risk management. Max observes the disintegration of this world, so familiar to him. Yet this time, unrest is growing amongst the locals. Algerians, Sudanese, Koreans, Haitians, Croatians and Byelorussians – the community is angry: buildings are crumbling, fires multiply, the police finds several horribly mutilated bodies of murdered drug addicts. One more in a series of police mishandlings and the whole district is in turmoil. Although Max agrees to cooperate with police inspector Sétubal, the investigation is complicated by the discovery that Max’s friend Macdou, owner of the most popular of the local restaurants, is implicated in dirty business. In the midst of the dark wars waged by opposite factions and hidden powers, Mpétigo has to try and save his friend and restore the fragile balance that keeps the community together.
François Forestier is 58. A Journalist for the Nouvel Observateur, he has recently published Howard Hughes, L’Homme aux secrets (Michel Lafon, 2005).