Thursday, July 22, 2010
A Rule Against Murder
I just can't give enough praise for the Inspector Armand Gamache mystery series and for Louise Penny's writing. I love them. While reading this series I feel like I gently slip deeper and more comfortably into the coziest of overstuffed chairs. It's a feeling that I cherish and am most grateful for.
This, the fourth in the series, is set in an old, log lodge set on a beautiful lake, surrounded with beautiful forest and just a short drive from the village of Three Pines. Gamache and his wife are celebrating their anniversary with a week stay at the lodge. At the same time there is a family reunion taking place. Of course, a murder takes place and Gamache is the one who looks into the past to discover who has been harboring a wound that has grown into the act of murder.
Penny keeps me totally wrapped up in the story, the mystery of who the murderer was and why and how it was committed. But she also thrills me with her turn of a phrase and the way she uses words to paint a a feeling, an atmosphere, a lesson, a character, etc.
I liked this description of the lodge:
That was the other ingredient of the Manoir. It was filled with suspects, it was filled with Morrows, huffling and silent. But more than that, it was filled with relief. It was like a sigh, with structure.
In the story the father had left each of his children a short note with advise on it.
You can't get milk from a hardware store. It was a funny sort of thing for a father to tell a daughter. But by then she'd broken the code, and knew what her father had been trying tell her. Stop asking for something that can't be given. And look for what is offered.
Advice given by Gamache to his friend and also, a suspect:
Be careful. You're making hurting a habit. Spreading it around won't lessen your pain, you know. Just the opposite.
I feel most blessed that Louise Penny has such a marvelous talent and that she decided to share that talent with me. I'm not a writer, have no desire to be but I'm grateful for those who are. Penny is one of my absolute favorites.