But why is the burglar lazy (le voleur parreseux)? I only recall his mother as being described as carrying with her “a touch of laziness.” Honoré Cuendet is a hard-working professional, providing not only for his mom but for his lover too. He’s not lazy, just unlucky.
Maigret, meanwhile, is feeling more and more like yesterday’s man and griping about the new order, where beat policemen like himself have become subordinate to well-educated, bureaucratic paper-pushers.
The world was changing. Paris was changing, everything was changing, men and methods. Retirement might seem frightening, but if he didn’t retire, wouldn’t he end up adrift in a world he no longer understood?
At least in this case he’s on familiar ground, looking to find out who murdered a not-so-lazy burglar he’d known for years. Except that’s not the case he’s supposed to be working on, at least according to his so-called superiors. Instead, he should be trying to catch a gang of bank robbers.
I spent most of the book figuring the two plot lines would end up being connected in some way, but they’re not, which leaves both stories feeling rushed at the end. This was too bad, as the the burglar’s murder had some potential, relating to another rich family with some dirty secrets hidden behind the façade of their Paris mansion. By this point, however, I think Simenon was getting a bit tired of the series and was looking forward to retiring as much as Maigret.