Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Brutal Telling (Chief Inspector Armand Gamache #5)” as Want to Read:
The Brutal Telling (Chief Inspector Armand Gamache #5)
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The Brutal Telling (Chief Inspector Armand Gamache #5)

4.23  ·  Rating Details  ·  19,184 Ratings  ·  1,823 Reviews
Chaos is coming, old son.

With those words the peace of Three Pines is shattered. As families prepare to head back to the city and children say goodbye to summer, a stranger is found murdered in the village bistro and antiques store. Once again, Chief Inspector Gamache and his team are called in to strip back layers of lies, exposing both treasures and rancid secrets
...more
ebook, 384 pages
Published September 22nd 2009 by Minotaur Books
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Brutal Telling, please sign up.

Popular Answered Questions

Rebecca Russell Yes, La Porte was the community of people with Down's Syndrome mentioned in the character, Vincent Gilbert's, book "Being".
Animals, even those…more
Yes, La Porte was the community of people with Down's Syndrome mentioned in the character, Vincent Gilbert's, book "Being".
Animals, even those considered difficult, often make a real connection and do very well with people with Down's Syndrome.(less)
This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Micheal Fraser
Jun 05, 2010 Micheal Fraser rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Having read all of Louise Penny's previous novels about the perfect
village of Three Pines and the amazing Chief Inspector Gamache I was
prepared to be vastly entertained by a witty, sometimes funny and
intricately plotted mystery whose solution always lies in the hearts of
men and the ability of Gamache to suss out what lies within.

I was not prepared for this compelling and unflinching look into the
heart of darkness that resides within us all. It is a universal truth
that we can never fully know ano
...more
Susan
All I can say is I'm truly shocked at how this one ends. After reading the cover of #6 it sounds like the story isn't over.
Margitte
Three Pines welcomed Marc and Dominique Gilbert as the new owners of Hadley house on the hill. For once, this sad, violated, derelict house got a second chance. It never belonged to the village, according to inspector Armand Gamache. It seemed the accusation, the voyeur on the hill, that looked down on them. Judged them. Preyed on them. And sometimes took one of the villagers, and killed them.

Three Pines was not like any other village. "Every Quebec village has a vocation", said Clara. “Some mak
...more
Carol
The Hook Needed a comfort read after reading several brutal thrillers. Strange that this one has Brutal in the title but it was much less violent even with a murder in the plot.

The Line “Funny how imperfections on the outside mean something splendid beneath.”

The Sinker – I was probably half way through this 5th Chief Inspector Armand Gamache
in the series before I became interested in the mystery. It didn’t grab me right away. As more and more was revealed about the murder victim I began to e
...more
Kelly H. (Maybedog)
My first book of the new year!

I'd really like to give this book 2.5 stars. The ending really irritated me but the rest was pretty good. I'm going to start of the new year with kindness and give it three stars.

This book is interesting and well written for the most part. It has a few slow spots but it's hard to put down once you reach the half way point. I'm sure it will be appealing to fans of this series. I haven't read any of Penny's books before so there have been a few moments when I've wonde
...more
Richard Derus
Sep 08, 2010 Richard Derus rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Mona
Oct 26, 2015 Mona rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Disappointing



Forest British Columbia, by Emily Carr, Image source digitaljournal.com

As much as it pains me to say this, I'm finding that the appeal of the Chief Inspector Armand Gamache series is diminishing as I get further into it.

As I said in my review of the fourth (and preceding) book, A Rule Against Murder (see the review here: https://www.goodreads.com/review/show...), the series is starting to get a bit stale, formulaic and repetitive.

Unfortunately, this often seems to happen with series
...more
Sebastian
Never thought I would see this day!

If someone had told me that I would be rating a Louise Penny book with two stars, I would have disregarded them as crazy. The author is such a good writer that there is no way this was even a choice. Sadly, I have to do it. In this novel pretty much goes against everything that has led me to love her work in the past. When we first met the inhabitants of Three Pines we were introduced to a fascinating group of people. At this point, we have had quite a bit of t
...more
Andy
Jan 15, 2015 Andy rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own, first-reads, reviewed
[This review is based on an Advanced Reader Copy won through the Goodreads First Reads program.:]

The Brutal Telling is an enjoyable, quiet mystery, with two major flaws.

To repeat what some others have said, this is a nice small town mystery with interesting characters. Once the story pulled me in, I "couldn't put it down." (Okay, I could put it down. But I was always eager to return to it.)

You can read more about the plot and the characters and the writing in other reviews. I want to address wha
...more
Paula
Louise Penny's Inspector Armand Gamache series is my favorite series in the mystery genre. The 5th book is back again at Three Pines introducing new unwanted owners of the haunting Hadley house. An unknown hermit is murdered, a treasure is found, and we witness the worst traits of the book's characters. This is a story of greed, jealousy, resentment, and lies.

What I enjoyed most was the wonderful poetic nature of The Brutal Telling. Listening to quotes narrated by the late Ralph Cosham is such a
...more
LJ
First Sentence: “All of them? Even the children?” The fireplace sputtered and cackled and swallowed his gas. “Slaughtered?”

As the seasons are changing, so are lives in the village of Three Pines. The body of an unknown man of a stranger is left in the bistro and antiques store of Oliver and Gabri. Chief Inspector Gamache must identify the victim as well as the killer uncovering secrets and lies along the way.

Quite different from the previous four books, this feels to be a transitional book, both
...more
Stephen
Oct 17, 2009 Stephen rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Stephen by: First Reads Giveaway
Shelves: first-reads
People come to mystery novels for different reasons, which explains why there is such a wide variety of sub-genres. When we read a mystery we are confronted with our own fears, desires, and those less than pleasant parts of our personality that we work to prevent seeing the light of day. Louise Penny deals with exactly that uglier part of our natures in this novel, The Brutal Telling.

I have read all five of the Chief Inspector Gamache novels. After reading Ms Penny's second novel I caught on to
...more
Karen Hall
Apr 04, 2012 Karen Hall rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I’ve loved Louise Penny’s books since Still Life, and read them quickly, almost one after another, but somehow I missed The Brutal Telling in my Year of Louise Penny, 2011. Since some of what happens in The Brutal Telling is revealed at the beginning of Bury Your Dead (2011), which I thought was brilliant, I considered skipping it altogether.

Boy, am I glad I didn’t! Had I not opened this book, I would have missed the continued rich development of characters I know and love, the interesting comp
...more
Susan
Appropriate October read, this being the darkest of the series for me thus far. We find our group of regulars battling some of their own inner demons, while at the same time trying to come to grips with the arrival of some unwanted outsiders. Even the landscapes in this addition were described more gloomy, remote and shadowy than usual.

Inspector Gamache is back in Three Pines again surrounded by his friends and a mysterious death. The body of an unknown homeless man is found in the local Bistro
...more
Erica
I made it to the duck.
Rosa is a character finally.
She even wears clothing.
However, she does not say, "Fuck" and that means I haven't read what I'm supposed to read about this duck, yet.
I've got to keep going.

I'd keep going anyhow.

While the mystery in this book, like the others, is fairly weak, and I'm not buying the solution at all, it's everything else I liked, especially a cabin full of treasure hidden in the woods.
A first edition of Charlotte's Web? I'd have drooled all over it.

I enjoyed the
...more
Tanja Berg
Jul 20, 2012 Tanja Berg rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Aw - now that the politics are done and over with, I just love this series! Finally a Chief Inspector who is not a Lord, Poet, near Deity or a Drunkard! It's so nice to meet up with the familiar inhabitants of Three Pines village. Who cares that they have the highest rate of murder per capita in the world?! Such a picturesque, sweet little town anyway.

A body is found in the gay couple's bistro, Gabri and Oliver's. No one claims to know him. Chief Inspector Gamache comes and begin to investigate.
...more
Kathy Davie
Apr 23, 2014 Kathy Davie rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery
Fifth in the Chief Inspector Armand Gamache mystery series and revolving around Gamache and Three Pines.

The Brutal Telling won the Agatha Award for Best Novel in 2009 and the Anthony Award for Best Novel in 2010 and was nominated for a Dilys Award and the Macavity Award for Best Mystery Novel in 2010.

My Take
This one was confusing, convoluted, and horrible. The confusion from how Penny filled in the background on the Hermit and the "stranger's" relationship, over the victim's identity, the why o
...more
Nancy
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Ronald Roseborough
Bon Dieu! How is it that I have not found this author before? "The Brutal Telling", by Louise Penny, is more than just a detective story. It is a literary novel. This work blends the lives of the characters and the reader by speaking to the souls of both. As in all great literature, the characters come to life through the words of the author, quickly becoming more than just the written word. The characters, such as Chief Inspector Armand Gamache, are completely developed people, full of life. Ea ...more
Contrarius
May 26, 2012 Contrarius rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery-thriller
I just love the way Penny's books are about so much more than what they seem to be about. I guess that's the point of "literary" fiction and "literary" mysteries, huh?

Anyway -- I'm tempted to give this 5 stars, but once again a few points of plot weakness keep me at the 4 star level. I'm already behind on writing my Penny reviews, but I promise promise promise to catch up in the next day or two. But the take home message is: if you like thinking while you read, if you love vivid characters, and
...more
Sub_zero
Mar 04, 2016 Sub_zero rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: reto-2016
La novela de Louise Penny brutal, lo que se dice brutal... pues no es. De hecho, se trata más bien de un cozy mistery bastante inocuo que tiene lugar en el seno de una pequeña comunidad canadiense y donde la investigación criminal cobra solo importancia relativa, sustituida por un exhaustivo tratamiento de los diferentes personajes implicados. No es que me parezca una mala propuesta, pero desde luego la manera de llevarla a cabo no me ha impresionado lo más mínimo y en más de una ocasión he teni ...more
Steve
Apr 07, 2014 Steve rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Returning to Three Pines and Inspector Gamache for book five of this wonderful series, only after the mistake of skipping a couple and reading book seven out of sequence, I am well reminded that these are best read in order and that I’m well on my way to repairing my gaffe. The body of an unknown man whom we come to know as The Hermit, appears one morning in Three Pines’ bistro, the establishment run by Olivier and Gabri. Olivier was with The Hermit the night before his body was found. Inspector ...more
judy
Oct 18, 2009 judy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery-thriller
When I find myself in Three Pines it reminds me of Brigadoon, the fictional Scottish village that only emerges from the mist for a single day each hundred years. Fortunately Penny doesn't make us wait that long for another glimpse of the charming, magical, slightly other worldly Three Pines. Penny is an amazing writer. Through her prose I can actually see and feel the stunning power of Clara's paintings. I can sit in the Bistro enjoying the smells and watching Gabri deliver yet another superb me ...more
Esil
Dec 12, 2010 Esil rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Chris
Jul 01, 2015 Chris rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Very good mystery which really shakes things up in Three Pines! :O
Fictionophile
It seems so unfair that the reddest, juiciest apples are oftentimes the ones in which a worm is concealed. The picture perfect, idyllic town of Three Pines proves this true when a stranger's body is found in the town's bistro on the village green.

The bistro is run by Olivier, a gay man who moved to Three Pines with his partner Gabriel who runs the local Bread and Breakfast. The two men are now village fixtures and have befriended one and all. Why would anyone leave a dead body in the bistro? Whe
...more
Jan C
Feb 12, 2011 Jan C rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery, canada, 2011
A dead body is found in the B & B … Olivier’s B & B. He says he knows nothing about it. But can this be believed by Chief Inspector Gamache? Well, not exactly. Even the beginning reader knows this since the book starts out with Olivier talking to the old man in his cabin in the woods. And the next thing you know, the dead man is found in the lounge.

Olivier and his partner Gabri have some new neighbors. An Inn and Spa is going in at the Old Hadley Place. Readers of previous books of Loui
...more
Leah
Feb 13, 2010 Leah rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: first-reads
Won on "Giveaways"--was drawn in immediately by the description--sounded very creepy! This is my first "Gamache" novel by Louise Penny, so I came in with no real expectations, although I was hoping for something dark and creepy!

I was torn between giving 3 or 4 stars, but ultimately I couldn't stop thinking about the writing style, so I rest on three.

My dislikes: apparently the village of Three Pines has LOTS of murders which I find kind of ridiculous; some of the 'mysteries and secrets' of the
...more
Susan
Feb 13, 2013 Susan rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
In her first novel, Three Pines, Louise Penny wrote a truly compelling, original novel with interesting characters and a neat mystery. The novel had no subtitle. Her second, A Fatal Grace, was subtitled A Three Pines Mystery; her third was A Chief Inspector Gamache Novel (A Three Pines mystery); her fourth similarly subtitled, and now this, her fifth, is an Armand Gamache novel. Clearly this is a writer in search of a cash-cow series. Armand Gamache was a secondary character in her first novel, ...more
Sheila Beaumont
Mar 20, 2010 Sheila Beaumont rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This, the fifth in Louise Penny's wonderful Three Pines series, is not only a clever, well-plotted whodunit, but also an allegory, a myth brought to life, and a meditation on greed.

The story starts off with bistro owner Olivier Brule and a hermit, who will be the murder victim, sitting in front of a fire in a log cabin in the woods outside Three Pines. A story, involving a Mountain King and his treasures, and the coming of Chaos and the Furies, is being told. When the hermit's dead body is found
...more
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 99 100 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
Madison Mega-Mara...: #67 - The Brutal Telling (Gamache #4) 1 2 May 21, 2015 02:45AM  
**Spoiler Alert** What is "Woo"? 11 243 Nov 26, 2012 08:02PM  
  • Necessary as Blood(Duncan Kincaid & Gemma James, #13)
  • I Shall Not Want (Rev. Clare Fergusson & Russ Van Alstyne Mysteries, #6)
  • Among the Mad (Maisie Dobbs, #6)
  • Black Diamond (Bruno, Chief of Police #3)
  • The Janus Stone (Ruth Galloway, #2)
  • A Carrion Death (Detective Kubu, #1)
194243
Many of Louise Penny's books are published under different titles by UK/Canada and US publishers.
She lives with her husband, Michael, and a golden retriever named Trudy, in a small village south of Montreal.

Her first Armand Gamache novel, "Still Life" won the New Blood Dagger, Arthur Ellis, Barry, Anthony and Dilys Awards.

Awards:
* Agatha Award: Best Novel
o 2007 – A Fatal Grace – Winner
o 2008 –
...more
More about Louise Penny...

Other Books in the Series

Chief Inspector Armand Gamache (1 - 10 of 12 books)
  • Still Life (Chief Inspector Armand Gamache, #1)
  • A Fatal Grace (Chief Inspector Armand Gamache, #2)
  • The Cruelest Month (Chief Inspector Armand Gamache, #3)
  • A Rule Against Murder (Chief Inspector Armand Gamache, #4)
  • Bury Your Dead (Chief Inspector Armand Gamache, #6)
  • A Trick of the Light (Chief Inspector Armand Gamache, #7)
  • The Beautiful Mystery (Chief Inspector Armand Gamache, #8)
  • How the Light Gets In (Chief Inspector Armand Gamache, #9)
  • The Long Way Home (Chief Inspector Armand Gamache, #10)
  • The Nature of the Beast (Chief Inspector Armand Gamache, #11)

Share This Book



“Where there is love there is courage,
where there is courage there is peace,
where there is peace there is God.
And when you have God, you have everything.”
35 likes
“What are you afraid of?
I'm afraid of not recognizing Paradise.”
25 likes
More quotes…