Ron Arden's Reviews > A Rule Against Murder

A Rule Against Murder by Louise Penny
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M 50x66
's review
Nov 29, 2011

really liked it

This is the 4th book in this series I read and I liked the change of venue. The other Inspector Gamache novels were centered in the Quebec village of Three Pines. This one was at the Manoir Bellechasse inn in the middle of the Quebec woods.

The major players in this story are members of a well to do family named the Morrows. Yes, this is the family of Peter Morrow, one of the main characters from the other novels.

The Inspector and his wife have come to the Manoir on their annual vacation which coincides with their wedding anniversary. Things seem idyllic, until there is a murder. The murder is puzzling because it appears that no one could have possibly done it. The victim was Peter Morrow's sister and everyone is devastated, but also starts pointing fingers at each other.

This is one dysfunctional family who are not quite what they appear. Everyone is hiding something or perhaps they are hiding from themselves. These people don't know how good they have it and childhood wounds are reopened. The brother who appears to be wealthy and sophisticated is anything but. The sister who is weird and considered a failure runs a very well respected business and is rolling in the dough.

Gamache who loves quoting poetry, quotes Milton's Paradise Lost as an appropriate theme for the people and the circumstances. In the poem, the devil fell from grace and preferred to rule in hell than be a slave in heaven. Everyone in this story is running from their past and has fallen from grace.

My favorite character is the child Bean. No one is really sure if the child is male or female and the mother won't say. This is her revenge on her mother and family. Bean at first appears odd, but then I realized he/she is the most normal person in the book. Bean reminds me of Luna in Harry Potter. She at first seems odd, but in fact is the most grounded person there is.

Gamache also has to face his past in this story, but unlike many of the others, he has come to grips with it and is very comfortable. I always feel like I want to be a better person whenever I read about Inspector Gamache. Of course he solves the crime, but not before some very scary scenes.

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