Still Life

Louise Penny | Fiction



Three Pines is a remote village south of Montreal.  It is a tiny and peaceful hamlet, where everyone knows everyone.  Early one Sunday morning during hunting season, an important elderly community member, Jane Neal, is found dead in the woods, with a lethal wound from an arrow.

We meet Chief Inspector Armand Gamache and his team of investigators who eventually solve the mystery of Jane’s death, and of her secret artwork.  Thus begins Louise Penny’s thirteen Armand Gamache mystery novels.

I found this book fun and delightful.  Suggested by my friend Janet, it kept me company all the way from Baltimore to home, when I just couldn’t bear to open Unsheltered by Barbara Kingsolver again (more on that in a future blog post).  I enjoyed Louise Penny’s ability to draw characters quickly and succinctly, and to explore both their inner and outer relationships.  Her storytelling, however, didn’t quite compel me.  It was a little slow, a little gentle.

That being said, I have decided to read book #2 in the series before I commit to read, or not read, all 13.  More to follow after I read A Fatal Grace.

4 responses on “Still Life

  1. Mary Cary Crawford

    My book club read Still Life this year (or was it last year?). We all enjoyed it. I’m not a big mystery book fan but I’d read more of hers.

  2. Donna

    Andrea. I’ve been to Three Pines, to the bookstore that Louise Penney talks about, and paddled on the rivers and area where many of her novels are based. Three Pines is indeed a sleepy, remote small town where everyone knows everyone. We just missed seeing Louise Penney herself by 10 minutes. I’ve probably read 8-9 of her novels and they truly do not become old.

  3. Rene Smith

    I am struggling with Barbara Kinsolver’s new Unsheltered too! But I will finish, because it’s a book club book and because she is one of my favorite authors. But this one is pretty boring and one-third of the way through I am wondering where the story is going to go, other than preaching (to the choir).