The toy village is Jeanneville, a small housing development where the houses have different names and sometimes different colors. Maigret has to deal with a murder there and to complicate things he has to put up with a feisty twenty-four year old housekeeper.
Jules Lepie,aka/Peg Leg lives by himself. He lost a leg when he fell into a drunken stupor on board a ship he staggered onto. No one knew he was there. During a brawl he lost the leg and successfully sued the ships owners saying he was waylaid on board. His live in housekeeper Felice likes to dress in bright colors and is nicknamed Polly as in parrot. One night Peg Leg is shot and killed in his bedroom. Maigret tries to get help from Felice but just gets more and more frustrated. She hates him and refuses to cooperate.
Since she poses such a challenge Maigret can’t stay away from her. Things get more complicated when a will is found leaving her everything. After Peg Leg’s funeral Felice runs off and Maigret has his man Javier follow her but she jumps in a truck heading for Paris and he loses her.
Suspicion falls on Peg Leg’s nephew, a sax player in a sleazy club. He’s a nervous wreck and has some connection with Felice. Since she reads romance novels she has her own ideas about him. Maigret grows more and more frustrated in trying to deal with her. In Paris she kept changing trains because she knew she was being followed. She slipedp a gun into a stranger’s pocket. In a cafe he recognizes her and she slips him a note. She doesn’t know Maigret saw that and found out who the man is and tracks him down. One night someone sneaks into the house and punches Felice and takes off. He was obviously looking for something.
Of course Maigret puts it all together while trying to deal with Felice. And then there’s that lobster. Simenon uses more humor than usual and that makes for an entertaining entry in the series.