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The Mystery of the Hatbox

Michel Bonnefis

A thrilling rags to riches story set in Paris around 1910, when ‘Apache' gangs controlled their territories, always ready to strike. While life in the Bastille district is rough and tough, friendship and solidarity, love and sacrifice can prevail. A destitute orphan, Justin, flees from his brutal gangster uncle and finds refuge with a former boxer, Jules, and his stalwart companions, Bougnat, Toubib and the gangster Jojo Silver Eyes. Protected by them and his close friends, brothers Marcel and Albert, Justin's quest for truth and justice unfolds against the plots of his violent and brutal Uncle Gaston. What is concealed in Justin's tattered hatbox that his uncle will go to any lengths to get?


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Michel Bonnefis has led an adventurous life in France, Australia and the Pacific Islands. He has a lively interest in French history and how it relates to family history. Some events and personalities in his novel are inspired by personalities of his grandfather's era.