Welcome to Three Pines, where the cruelest month is about to deliver on its threat. It's spring in the tiny, forgotten village; buds are on the trees, and the first flowers are struggling through the newly thawed earth. But not everything is meant to return to life....
When some villagers decide to celebrate Easter with a séance at the Old Hadley House, they are hoping to rid the town of its evil - until one of their party dies of fright. Was this a natural death, or was the victim somehow helped along?
Brilliant, compassionate Chief Inspector Armand Gamache of the Sûreté du Québec is called to investigate in a case that will force him to face his own ghosts as well as those of a seemingly idyllic town where relationships are far more dangerous than they seem.
©2007 Louise Penny (P)2008 Blackstone Audio, Inc.
"Many mystery buffs have credited Louise Penny with the revival of the type of traditional murder mystery made famous by Agatha Christie.... The book's title is a metaphor not only for the month of April but also for Gamache's personal and professional challenges - making this the series standout so far." (Sarah Weinman)
I'm a professional dog trainer who loves to read. I have degrees in English and Adult Ed. I love well written books that take me away.
A thoughtful, articulate, literate and engrossing series. Each book can stand alone but I love how the characters get fleshed out from book to book. Absolutely love the stories and the narration. 5 stars all around.
First of all, Ralph Cosham is superb. He has a pleasing voice and brings the characters to life. I want to move to Three Pines,just as soon as they get those nasty murders taken care of and I want to be a friend to all the people who live there. These stories are so well written that you can get involved in the story line as well as with the richly fleshed out characters. I'm so glad there are many more in this series.
Retired CFO, Army wife, Mom of five, Grandma of six, two sons who served in combat, love to read books that reflect my values and faith, love mysteries, historical, military stories, and books that don't waste my time . . . if it doesn't have an ending that was worth the wait, I'm not a happy camper.
The Cruelest Month, the third in the series, was just as satisfying as the first two . . . maybe more so . . . as Chief Inspector Armand Gamache faces down evil in the old Hadley House in Three Pines, Quebec . . . familiar friends and townsfolk from Three Pines return, artists Peter and Clara, poet Ruth, and former psychologist turned bookstore owner, Myrna . . . as Gamache and his team work to solve the murder, it becomes more and more evident that he has a Judas on his own team . . . waiting to betray him . . . as the case comes closer and closer to resolution, Gamache deals with ever increasing personal attacks, (which go back to a former case, where he exposed the corruption of a fellow department officer) . . . keeping a cool head and vigilant, determination to listen, and seek truth . . . he manages to maneuver his way through the quagmire . . .references to Matthew 10:36 and other subtle biblical quotes . . . meeting God at the door . . . are peppered through Louise Penny's Chief Inspector Gamache books . . . so are things like new age beliefs, seances, and other fleeting trends . . . you are left to suss out what is steadfast . . . what is true . . . what is good . . . I like that . . .
Lots of literary references, and allusions to spirituality that seem very genuine. The wholesome, intellectual setting of Three Pines is pretty irresistible. I love French food and wine...I guess I'll have to try Scotch now! These novels are evocative of place in the way James Lee Burke conjures LA and TX. And maybe unlike Burke, they are mostly soothing to listen to. If you have ever worked a homicide case, you will certainly have to put aside your training and experience and listen to the investigative parts of the book simply to understand what Penny is creating with that text. That is easy with some practice.
Just Read Baby!
I love the way the author fleshed out the characters in this third book. she also tied up some loose ends related to the notorious Arnot subplot. 3 Pines is a place that I would love to visit again!
There are two stories within this novel. the murder is secondary to the continued unfolding of the back story of Armand being made to pay for turning in dirty fellow officers. Both show how love can become twisted into jealousy and acts of hatred but Armand's story so much the sadder. I was somber after listening. Yet this novel includes many moments of poetry and beautiful prose.
The narrator is excellent as Armand but sometimes not as strong in distinguishing other voices as I think he's been in prior novels in this series.
well worth the listen . But be prepared for deep melancholy.
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