The Journey …by Bluette Matthey


Hardy Durkin, the veteran trekker, and protagonist of the Hardy Durkin Travel Mystery Series takes readers to off-the-beaten-path locales rather than the ‘Ten days in Europe’ itinerary, but locales are no less intriguing.  Thanks to my father, I have been traveling since childhood, and the lesser-known destinations have left a more memorable imprint. That is not to take anything away from the wonders of London, Paris, Rome, etc., but taking ‘the road less traveled’ has made a difference in my writing and spiritual journey in this life. 

In Abruzzo Intrigue, Hardy had me hiking into a remote pre-11th century hermitage in Abruzzo, Italy, carved into a stone cliff face, where time was taken totally out of the equation.  My thoughts stilled; my attention motionless … frivolity suspended.  For brief moments, as Pope Celestine before me in 1274 had been, I was alone with my Creator, feeding my hungry inner man.

My protagonist has also taken me to the marvelous French island of Corsica, a place of great natural beauty and the miasmic contradictions of the hearts of men, in Corsican Justice.  The Engadine Valley in Switzerland, the playground of the rich and famous, summoned me for the annual Ski Marathon, which was the backdrop for book #5 in the series Engadine Aerie.  Germany’s Black Forest was the setting for Black Forest Reckoning, which gave me entry into the Black Forest and an unforgettable day spa experience in exclusive Baden-Baden.  And Dalmatian Traffick, set in Dubrovnik and Montenegro, afforded me a fascinating foray into the dark demeanor of the Balkans. 

Homicide Hérault, my latest Hardy Durkin Travel Mystery, is set in the Hérault region in the South of France.  The REAL South of France, we call it, because it has not been invaded by foreign oligarchs and gangsters or the superficial ‘beautiful people’ crowd that has taken over the Côte d’Azur with their yachts and elitist silliness. The Hérault is a land whose coast is embraced by the Mediterranean Sea and whose inland villages were home to first the Cathars, then the Templars. The main town, Béziers, is the oldest city in France, depending on who you talk to. The history is profound and thrilling; the lifestyle is laid back and kind. 

Visit the Hérault with Hardy, immerse yourself in the good life, and enjoy a good mystery.

Written by Bluette Matthey

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