Say "meh" (the 'e' pronounced as in 'eh?') and "gray" as in the colour.
This is a French work (later made into a popular TV series) and the police inspector has a French name. The author, Georges Simenon, was Belgian and a very prolific writer. He wrote different novels under various pen names, but his character Maigret was by far his greatest success. The 'Agatha Christie' of French literature, Simenon wrote 84 books featuring his character Maigret as well as additional detective "polars" (French word for modern police detective stories) and other novels.
See the reference below for a biographical overview of Simenon.