Carol's Reviews > The Beautiful Mystery

The Beautiful Mystery by Louise Penny
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's review
Sep 10, 12

bookshelves: mystery
Read in September, 2012

I love Inspector Gamache and Beauvoir and the whole gang. I love Three Pines, too, but it wasn't in this book. Instead, we're at a mysterious abbey almost-unknown until a CD of their Gregorian chants is released. So, in this novel, there are only Gamache, Beauvoir, the monks, and Chief-of-all-chiefs in the Surete, Francouer.

I felt Beauvoir's relationship with Gamache was a little different than before. I didn't remember him being quite so free and able to be sarcastic with his boss before. His insecurities are roiling as usual, and complicated by a traumatic incident the whole team went through before in the series. Their interchanges were sometimes a little jarring.

C.I. Gamache was his usual calm, steady self. He has a protective streak for Beauvoir.

The monks were an amazing bunch of personalities. I enjoyed learning more about the monks, their music, and their history.

Francouer was his usual poisonous self. He has an agenda that Gamache cannot figure out until too late.

Although I was thrown off course from what felt like differences to me, I enjoyed this mystery. It held my interest, and the culprit was a surprise until almost the end.
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Comments (showing 1-4 of 4) (4 new)

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Jane Do you also feel a certain amount of loss when you've finished one of the C.I. Gamache books? I'm already pining away for the next installment. No other series captures my interest as well. Any suggestions?

Carol I know what you mean. I do feel loss and yearning when one is over. Penny writes literature that happens to be mystery. Very beautiful and evocative.

If you haven't already tried her, I'd suggest Julia Spencer-Fleming's series. In the Bleak Midwinter is the first. I think. It is about a female army pilot turned Episcopal priest in a small town and a Chief of Police who also has a military background. I think most of the titles are lines from hymns. Very good mystery series.

Gillian Bradshaw is wonderful. She writes historical fiction. I started with Beacon at Alexandria, on my sister's recommendation. I loved it. I've read another, but I can't remember the name. I will definitely read more. Her books are older, and you may only find them in libraries.

Good luck, and let me know if you try these! Also let me know what you recommend.


Jane oh, excellent suggestion!! I did read "In the Bleak Midwinter," loved it, and then got sidetracked. I have the rest of that series on my To-Read list and just found the second in the series on our library website. Thank you for this reminder.

On a whim, I started reading a few Tamar Myers mysteries while waiting for Penny's latest. These take place predominantly in rural Pennsylvania. The main character is Mennonite, many of the other recurring characters are Amish. They're lighter, sometimes more than a bit silly, so I can't take too many of those in a row (there are over a dozen).

At the moment, I'm enjoying "The Count of Monte Cristo" and wondering why I never read this in school. Trying to think of some good background music to go with that. I listened to some Gregorian chants while reading The Beautiful Mystery and realized how much atmosphere can add to my love of a good book. :-)

message 4: by Carol (last edited Sep 18, 2012 07:29PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Carol I have always wanted to read The Count of Monte Cristo. It's about time I did. As the saying goes "So many books, so little time!"

I'd like to try the Tamar Myers books. I like light and silly (Sookie Stackhouse in the early books). One of my husband's Aunts talked about her. I think. Said it reminded her of growing up on the farm. She is in her 80s or 90s and grew up Northeast of Asheville NC in Bald Creek. I love the names up there. My husband's Dad grew up nearby in Possum Trot. :) These small communities are nearest to Burnsville NC.

Come to think of it, though, I think she may have been talking about a different author.

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