Tanja Berg's Reviews > Still Life

Still Life by Louise Penny
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Jun 17, 12

bookshelves: murder-mystery, kindle
Read from June 14 to 17, 2012

I stumbled upon this book while desperately searching for something new to read. Or rather, I came across "a trick of the light" which really sounded like my cup of tea, but the kindle version was the most expensive one so I rejected it on principle. When furhter searching proved fruitless, I decided to read the first inspector Gamache novel instead. I loved it from the start and the first chapter had me burst out laughing several times. I have never read anything by Louise Penny before, but she's destined to become my next favorite murder mystery author. Like P.D. James, Elizabeth George and Nele Neuhaus before, I will read all her books and buy the newest installment right upon publishing. "Still Life" was such a rare treat that I only expect more greatness to come. I already downloaded the second in the series.

What first struck me is how funny, astute and unpretentious the writing was. The author has brilliant insight into human nature and this permeates the whole book and all the characters. Except for homicide trainee Nichol who doesn't understand the first thing about humans and much less herself. She is a handful - rude, abarasive and downright destructive.

In the little village of Three Pines the former schoolteacher and artist Jane Neal is found dead on a path in the woods. She's been shot with an arrow, but it's not sticking out from her chest. Inspector Gamache and his team are called to investigate. At first they think it might be a hunting accident, but no one comes forth to accept the blame. A few days before Jane has had an artwork accepted to a local exhibition. It's the first painting she has ever let anyone see. Somehow these two things are connected, but it takes Gamache a while to sort through the red herrings and realize this.

This is the most delightful murder mystery I have read in years. I gobbled it up, soaking in the rural Québec atmosphere. Highly recommendable to any fan of this genre.
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Reading Progress

06/15/2012
11.0% "I hit the jack-pot with this book. LOVE it so far - I've burst out laughing several times."
06/15/2012
11.0% "I hit the jack-pot with this book. LOVE it so far - I've burst out laughing several times."
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