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Still Life (Chief Inspector Armand Gamache, #1)
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Group Read Discussions > April 2018 Group Read - Still Life by Louise Penny (No spoilers)

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message 1: by Bill, Co-Moderator (new) - rated it 4 stars

Bill | 5421 comments Mod
This is the group read thread for the first book in the Inspector Gamache series by Louise Penny; Still Life (Chief Inspector Armand Gamache, #1) by Louise Penny Still Life. NancyJ will be your moderator. Enjoy!


Emma I’ve been meaning to read this for ages! Hopefully this group read will motivate me to finally pick it up!


Skye | 2105 comments I am going to be part of this group, too. Nancy J mentioned having two threads ( Sue Grafton discussion); one for comments and one for spoilers ( for those of us ready to discuss). I told her you would have to concur and set them up.


Linda (beaulieulinda117gmailcom) | 1366 comments I read this last month and really liked it. I hope everyone likes it as much as I did. I'm going on number 5 in the series.


message 5: by Bill, Co-Moderator (new) - rated it 4 stars

Bill | 5421 comments Mod
Skye wrote: "I am going to be part of this group, too. Nancy J mentioned having two threads ( Sue Grafton discussion); one for comments and one for spoilers ( for those of us ready to discuss). I told her you w..."

That's fine if NancyJ wants to do that. I'll leave it up to her.


message 6: by Ami (new)

Ami Cook | 128 comments On hold at library hope to pick up tomorrow or Monday!


Skye | 2105 comments Bill wrote: "Skye wrote: "I am going to be part of this group, too. Nancy J mentioned having two threads ( Sue Grafton discussion); one for comments and one for spoilers ( for those of us ready to discuss). I t..."

:)

Thanks so much, Bill.


Skye | 2105 comments Emma wrote: "I’ve been meaning to read this for ages! Hopefully this group read will motivate me to finally pick it up!"

Emma, it's very good.


NancyJ (nancyjjj) Thanks for setting this up early Bill!

I hope you will like this book as much as I did, and will want to continue with the series. It's worth paying attention to the characters in the village as well as the detectives, because many of them will show up in later books too.


NancyJ (nancyjjj) Bill wrote: "Skye wrote: "I am going to be part of this group, too. Nancy J mentioned having two threads ( Sue Grafton discussion); one for comments and one for spoilers ( for those of us ready to discuss). I t..."

OK. Thanks. I'll take a closer look and figure out the best timing for it.


jennsquared | 48 comments I listened to this last month and it was excellent! I can't wait to listen to the others!!!!! I want to discuss already!!!!


SherryRose | 926 comments I love the characters in this series.


message 13: by Bill, Co-Moderator (new) - rated it 4 stars

Bill | 5421 comments Mod
NancyJ wrote: "Thanks for setting this up early Bill!

I hope you will like this book as much as I did, and will want to continue with the series. It's worth paying attention to the characters in the village as ..."


I look forward to the conversations. I've read the first three so far and as you say part of the enjoyment is learning about the village and the interesting characters who live there.


message 14: by Skye (new) - rated it 4 stars

Skye | 2105 comments Bill wrote: "NancyJ wrote: "Thanks for setting this up early Bill!

I hope you will like this book as much as I did, and will want to continue with the series. It's worth paying attention to the characters in ..."


I loved this book, too, Bill, and I hope you can set up two threads for the Parker book, as well. Many have already read and finished Night Passage.


NancyJ (nancyjjj) OK, let's start then! Without discussing the ending yet (or the surprises in Jane's house)...

Who are your favorite characters so far?


message 16: by NancyJ (last edited Mar 31, 2018 03:51PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

NancyJ (nancyjjj) FYI. There is a movie based on this book, but I didn't like it at all. The setting was just wrong, and for this book that's important, since the setting is like a character itself.


jennsquared | 48 comments my favorite is the inspector himself and Carol!!!!! i love the way Gamache leads his team and I love how Carol thinks.


NancyJ (nancyjjj) jennsquared wrote: "my favorite is the inspector himself and Carol!!!!! i love the way Gamache leads his team ...."

I love Gamache too. He's more intuitive and compassionate than the typical police detective. And he likes a little poetry. How unusual is that?


jennsquared | 48 comments I know! most detective series I read don't really show compassion.

and I meant Clara! not Carol. this should teach me not to respond when I'm tired! lol.

I love how she evolved in the first book. she's really cleaver and has her own way of thinking. I don't care much for her husband in the first book; and I'm interested to see if the young lady apprentice detective changes in the later series as well.


message 20: by Skye (new) - rated it 4 stars

Skye | 2105 comments I really loved Chief Inspector Adam Gamache: he has a unique personality and dogged determination. I also liked Clara; she was the character who appeared to hold the others together ( not emotionally, but as a paper clip), although she was emotional becaise she cared.


message 21: by Bill, Co-Moderator (new) - rated it 4 stars

Bill | 5421 comments Mod
I like Olivier and Gabri who own the Bistro, Myrna who owns the book store (I mean how could you not like a bookstore owner) and of course, Clara... Not her hubby so much.


message 22: by Skye (new) - rated it 4 stars

Skye | 2105 comments jennsquared wrote: "I know! most detective series I read don't really show compassion.

and I meant Clara! not Carol. this should teach me not to respond when I'm tired! lol.

I love how she evolved in the first book...."


She is an interesting woman. and Miss Penny truly develops her character throughout.

I also like Olivier, Gabri, and Myrna, but I don't care for Peter.


message 23: by Bill, Co-Moderator (new) - rated it 4 stars

Bill | 5421 comments Mod
NancyJ... Do you want a separate thread for people who have completed the book already. Those that want to comment on the whole book can spoiler their comments as well if you just want the one thread.. Let me know.


NancyJ (nancyjjj) Bill wrote: "NancyJ... Do you want a separate thread for people who have completed the book already. Those that want to comment on the whole book can spoiler their comments as well if you just want the one thre..."

Thanks Bill. Here is where I saw it done - in the Currently Reading section of the Discussion area.
https://www.goodreads.com/group/show/...


Bonnie One thing I loved about this book- and others I read in this series- is insight into Quebec and French Canadians. I have Canadian friends from other areas and we were seated with a family from Quebec on a long ago cruise.


NancyJ (nancyjjj) jennsquared wrote: "I know! most detective series I read don't really show compassion.

and I meant Clara! not Carol. this should teach me not to respond when I'm tired! lol.

I love how she evolved in the first book...."


I love Clara too. She continues to evolve a lot during the book. Her art improves too in the next few books. Though it's hard to beat Warrior Uteruses for a funny title. Pictures of the artwork would be nice, don't you think?

Somehow I do have a picture in my mind of what Jane's artwork might look like.


NancyJ (nancyjjj) Skye wrote: "I really loved Chief Inspector Adam Gamache: he has a unique personality and dogged determination. I also liked Clara; she was the character who appeared to hold the others together ( not emotional..."

I love that ... "not emotionally, but as a paper clip"


message 28: by Bill, Co-Moderator (new) - rated it 4 stars

Bill | 5421 comments Mod
To all. If you have read the book and you feel your comments might add spoilers, please post your thoughts on this thread.

https://www.goodreads.com/topic/show/...

Please keep this thread free of spoilers


message 29: by Skye (new) - rated it 4 stars

Skye | 2105 comments Bonnie wrote: "One thing I loved about this book- and others I read in this series- is insight into Quebec and French Canadians. I have Canadian friends from other areas and we were seated with a family from Queb..."

I agree, Bonnie, although I have been reading many books that take place in either Canada or England, and suddenly, I am getting a different picture.


message 30: by Skye (new) - rated it 4 stars

Skye | 2105 comments NancyJ wrote: "jennsquared wrote: "I know! most detective series I read don't really show compassion.

and I meant Clara! not Carol. this should teach me not to respond when I'm tired! lol.

I love how she evolve..."



Clara is indeed an interesting character in this book --- I have not read any other books, yet, but I certainly intend on continuing this series---I adore art and found this to be so different than I had originally thought. Yes, I agree that pictures of the artwork would be splendid, too. I have a close friend who makes frequent little four-day trips with her husband to Toronto as well as Quebec.


message 31: by Skye (new) - rated it 4 stars

Skye | 2105 comments NancyJ wrote: "Skye wrote: "I really loved Chief Inspector Adam Gamache: he has a unique personality and dogged determination. I also liked Clara; she was the character who appeared to hold the others together ( ..."

:)


Linda (beaulieulinda117gmailcom) | 1366 comments I married a French Canadian although he was born in Ontario. His parents came from Quebec so it is nice to read something from there. I also like Clara.


Bonnie Skye wrote: "NancyJ wrote: "jennsquared wrote: "I know! most detective series I read don't really show compassion.

and I meant Clara! not Carol. this should teach me not to respond when I'm tired! lol.

I love..."


There are a few of the later ones that get darker than the series begins. But I liked or loved all of the books.


Susanna - Censored by GoodReads (susannag) | 551 comments My favorite character is Ruth Zardo. (In the series as a whole.)


message 35: by NancyJ (last edited Apr 01, 2018 09:16PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

NancyJ (nancyjjj) Bonnie wrote: "One thing I loved about this book- and others I read in this series- is insight into Quebec and French Canadians. I have Canadian friends from other areas and we were seated with a family from Queb..."

Me too. I liked learning about both the French and English (Anglo) perspectives in these books. The conversation with Gamache and Ben about individual versus collective rights was interesting. I didn't catch that the first time I read the book.

I live so close to Canada, I feel like I should know more.

Gamache and his team are all French speakers, and Three Pine residents are mostly English, but they treat one another with respect. I guess that's not true of everyone in Quebec.

I also like listening to the audio books to hear how some of the French words are pronounced.


Leslie (lesl) | 7 comments I love Gamache (and this entire series... I eagerly look forward to her new release every year!). He has such integrity and compassion. Maybe this is more for later in the series than just this first book, but I love the setting of Three Pines. It makes me wish it was real so I could visit and sit in the Bistro eating all the delicious foods they mention.


message 37: by Skye (new) - rated it 4 stars

Skye | 2105 comments I love the setting, Leslie, but this is the only one I have read so far.


Linda (beaulieulinda117gmailcom) | 1366 comments I know what you mean. Wouldn't it be great to vacation there.


message 39: by Skye (new) - rated it 4 stars

Skye | 2105 comments Yes, Linda; I would love to visit Canada, and I would adore finding a place like Three Pines.


Susanna - Censored by GoodReads (susannag) | 551 comments I would love to vacation here, if I could be assured I would neither be a corpse or a suspect!


message 41: by Jess (new) - rated it 4 stars

Jess (mividadulce) | 13 comments My second favourite mystery series only after Agatha Christie! I've finished book 7, A Trick of the Light which is my favourite from the series so far. Can't wait to read the next one.

I wish I can visit Three Pines one day, staying at the B&B and eating croissant and drink cafe au lait, having baguette and brie cheese for lunch, reading books from Myrna's bookstore, and watching Gamache investigating... ;)


message 42: by Skye (new) - rated it 4 stars

Skye | 2105 comments Susanna - Censored by GoodReads wrote: "I would love to vacation here, if I could be assured I would neither be a corpse or a suspect!"

:)


message 43: by Skye (new) - rated it 4 stars

Skye | 2105 comments Jess wrote: "My second favourite mystery series only after Agatha Christie! I've finished book 7, A Trick of the Light which is my favourite from the series so far. Can't wait to read the next o..."

Sounds heavenly; in fact, you just made me hungry and wishing for a book store.


message 44: by NancyJ (last edited Apr 03, 2018 11:05AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

NancyJ (nancyjjj) Susanna - Censored by GoodReads wrote: "I would love to vacation here, if I could be assured I would neither be a corpse or a suspect!"

Hmm, no guarantee of that in Three Pines! In a later book a new family opens a larger inn up the hill, with horses and riding trails.

Seriously everyone, the region is a great place to visit. Outside the cities there are a lot of Bed and Breakfast inns. The picturesque towns in Quebec, Vermont and Upstate New York are especially popular in the fall when the tree colors are so gorgeous. We love to go to the Finger Lakes region in New York each summer to visit the wineries, and eat in lovely lakeside restaurants.


Linda (beaulieulinda117gmailcom) | 1366 comments I recently finished The Murder Stone which was quite good.


Carol | 1 comments I am a huge fan of Chief Inspector Gamache and have read all the books in the series. I didn't know if you'all knew that Still Life was made into a dvd that is available for sale on Amazon. I do not see Nathanial Parker as Gamache though. All the characters are "prettier" than I envisioned in the book.

In some books I was worried about Gamache and then I thought, don't worry he is Gamache!


message 47: by Skye (new) - rated it 4 stars

Skye | 2105 comments NancyJ wrote: "Susanna - Censored by GoodReads wrote: "I would love to vacation here, if I could be assured I would neither be a corpse or a suspect!"

Hmm, no guarantee of that in Three Pines! In a later book a ..."


I have never been to Canada, Nancy, but I have hiked along areas of NY State, and yes, the Finger Lakes are lovely.


Linda (beaulieulinda117gmailcom) | 1366 comments I'm from Ontario and I've had the privilege of going to Quebec a couple of times. Very beautiful country but most memorable jaunt when we took the kids to my husband's uncle's sugar bush.


NancyJ (nancyjjj) Linda wrote: "I'm from Ontario and I've had the privilege of going to Quebec a couple of times. Very beautiful country but most memorable jaunt when we took the kids to my husband's uncle's sugar bush."

What is a sugar bush? Does it have anything to do with maple syrup? I haven't been to Quebec since I was a kid, but I've been to Ontario several times. I really liked Niagara on the Lake and The Toronto FiIm Festival.


NancyJ (nancyjjj) Carol wrote: "I am a huge fan of Chief Inspector Gamache and have read all the books in the series. I didn't know if you'all knew that Still Life was made into a dvd that is available for sale on Amazon. I do no..."

I started watching the DVD, but It all just seemed wrong. You nailed it - they were too pretty! I had to turn it off.

I know what you mean about Gamache. He takes big risks by fighting the corruption, and sometimes I'm amazed he's still alive.
He can let himself be very genuine and vulnerable, but he has a lot of inner strength.

Just before I started reading this series, I read a few books with cocky, smart-ass detectives and assassins. So Gamache was a refreshing change.


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