Robert Brien

Created by Pierre Saurel
Pseudonym of Pierre Daignault
Other pseudonyms include Jacques Régent, Hercule Valjean, Paul Verchères


When his astonishing run (over a thousand stories over twenty-odd years) featuring Montreal private eye Albert Brien (“Le détective national des Canadiens française!”) was drawing to a close in 1966, Québecois pulpster Pierre Saurel decided to spin off a new series.

The new series, entitled Détective Privé Brien Le Don Juan, was intended for adults, and related the adventures–investigative and sexual–of Albert’s son and partner, ROBERT BRIEN.

In the original series, Robert had gone away to study in the States, with big plans of returning home to join the Montreal police department, but decided instead to join his father’s agency, and accompanied him in his adventures for over two decades.

Young and handsome, Robert was always a bit of a player (a “Don Juan”), and in his new series he finally got to cut loose. Between 1967 and 1968, eighteen issues were printed, with cover illustrations by Hervé Daignault, the author’s brother. Published in the popular fascicules format, they sold for twenty cents a pop. Not bad for 32-36 pages of pure pulp.


The author, whose real name was Pierre Daignault, was not just a pulp writer. He was also an actor, a folklorist, a singer, a producer and a director, leaving a huge stamp on Quebecois culture. Between 1947 and 1966, he published over 900 short stories, mostly crime fiction, including series featuring Les Aventures de Cow-Boys, Les Exploits Policiers du Domino Noir (a masked crimefighter), Diane la Belle Aventuriére (literally a beautiful adventurer) and perhaps most successfully, Agent IXE-13 (the “Ace of Canadian Spies”),” which reportedly sold over 28 million copies between 1947 and 1967. Nor was that the end of Saurel’s contributions to Quebec crime fiction–between 1980 and 1985, he published a series of 46 paperback novellas featuring the Robert “Le Manchot” Dumont, a one-handed former police officer who became a private detective.


    aka “Brien le Don Juan”)
    (1967-68, Les Édition Pierre Saurel)

    • “Elle avait trop d’amants” (#01, 1967)
    • “Meurtre dans le métro” (#02, 1967)
    • “La douche de la mort” (#03, 1967)
    • “Le vice dans la peau” (#04, 1967)
    • “La femme-vampire” (#05, 1967)
    • “Nuit de noces sanglante” (#06, 1967)
    • “Minuit” (#07, 1967)
    • “Femme adultêre” (#08, 1967)
    • “Le train de la mort” (#09, 1967)
    • “Accusé de viol” (#10, 1967)
    • “Films pornographiques” (#11, 1967)
    • “Protection contre le vice” (#12, 1967)
    • “Fille nue enlevée” (#13, 1967)
    • “La vicieuse assassinée” (#14, 1967)
    • “Meurtre en mini-jupe” (#15)
    • “Mademoiselle hold-up” (#16)
    • “Meurtre sexé” (#17)
    • “Le bijou des passions” (#18, 1968)


Respectfully submitted by Kevin Burton Smith. Thanks to Keith for the lead (and the book).

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