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The Beautiful Mystery Audiobook

The Beautiful Mystery: A Chief Inspector Gamache Novel

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Publisher's Summary

Audie Award Nominee, Mystery, 2013

The brilliant new novel in the New York Times best-selling series by Louise Penny, one of the most acclaimed crime writers of our time

No outsiders are ever admitted to the monastery of Saint-Gilbert-Entre-les-Loups, hidden deep in the wilderness of Quebec, where two dozen cloistered monks live in peace and prayer. They grow vegetables, they tend chickens, they make chocolate. And they sing. Ironically, for a community that has taken a vow of silence, the monks have become world-famous for their glorious voices, raised in ancient chants whose effect on both singer and listener is so profound it is known as “the beautiful mystery.”

But when the renowned choir director is murdered, the lock on the monastery’s massive wooden door is drawn back to admit Chief Inspector Armand Gamache and Jean-Guy Beauvoir of the Sûreté du Québec. There they discover disquiet beneath the silence, discord in the apparent harmony. One of the brothers, in this life of prayer and contemplation, has been contemplating murder. As the peace of the monastery crumbles, Gamache is forced to confront some of his own demons, as well as those roaming the remote corridors. Before finding the killer, before restoring peace, the Chief must first consider the divine, the human, and the cracks in between.

©2012 Three Pines Creations, Inc. (P)2012 Macmillan Audio

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.5 (2878 )
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Performance
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  •  
    carina 08-30-13
    carina 08-30-13 Member Since 2010

    Retired teacher

    HELPFUL VOTES
    81
    ratings
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    "What Can Happen in a Monastery?"
    What did you love best about The Beautiful Mystery?

    I listened to this book twice. The first time I didn't get the full depth of being inside a place not many have seen or experienced. The second time I felt it. What I liked best was the real sense of what life must be like in a monk's world so removed from the outside and how the different personalities of the brothers all fit together.


    What other book might you compare The Beautiful Mystery to and why?

    I wouldn't compare this book to another of Louise Penny's books or any other book. This one is truly unique.


    Have you listened to any of Ralph Cosham’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    I've listened to all of the Louise Penny audiobooks with Ralph Cosham. This one is outstanding like all of the others he reads. He's the BEST.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    This was not a story that grabbed me the first time I listened perhaps because it was such a very different kind of setting. However, the second listen did keep my interest even though I knew the plot. There is a lot more to this book than just solving the mystery. Music lovers will appreciate and enjoy this story greatly.


    Any additional comments?

    The ending of this book was very difficult for me to hear and accept. Bouvoir is one of my favorite characters, and I adore the interactions between Gamash and Bouvoir. There has to be another book to follow this one to let us know where their relationship goes. I seem to be emotionally involved with these characters. I feel as if I know and care about them.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Cheryl Castle Rock, CO 80109 United States 08-17-13
    Cheryl Castle Rock, CO 80109 United States 08-17-13
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    "Rocks your world"

    Louise Penny's intelligent and well-crafted mysteries are always thought-provoking and enjoyable, but this one reaches far down into the psyche and creates a building of dread and suspense that is far and above the previous installments.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    RKNS 07-23-13
    RKNS 07-23-13
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Monotonal nightmare"

    Having read a couple reviews of the this book, I decided to try it on Audible, hoping it would, as is often the case, be even better and more interesting if read by someone with appropriate accents and intonations. And I did try to tolerate the reader, in hopes that improvement was on the way. But after about 2 hours of listening while awake, tolerate it I no longer could. Maybe it's just me, but this person's reading does not work.

    My favorite books are filled with the kind of historical detail found in this one. Louise Penny may well have written a fascinating story, but I will never know - this tediously read book will be deleted from my library.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Shellbin 07-18-13
    Shellbin 07-18-13 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "I loved this book"


    I would place it in the category of "will mean more if you've been following the series."

    It is a bit slow to get going - actually quite slow - however there is a mood to be set and such things take time. The basic story was good, but the thing that made the book truly great for me is how Penny has continued to develop her characters (in this book, Gamache and Jean-Guy Beauvoir). At the point at which things come to a peak near the end, I was actually shaking with emotion - I'd become that involved!



    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Beverly 05-25-13
    Beverly 05-25-13
    ratings
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    66
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    "Sad"
    Would you try another book from Louise Penny and/or Ralph Cosham?

    I have all the Chief Inspector Gamache Novels and have loved each of them. However, I am not sure I would read another because of the disappointing ending to this one. Certain ongoing characters are essential to the overall feeling of the books. The primary secondary character should be one that you can identify with and cheer for, and support. His character is definitely tarnished for me and I do not like the direction this book is taking.


    What could Louise Penny have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

    Provide a more positive outcome in the book.


    What three words best describe Ralph Cosham’s performance?

    Intriguing, engaging, enjoyable


    If this book were a movie would you go see it?

    No


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Marie Parker 04-19-13

    yoga mom

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    "A contemplative and somber winner"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    Yes, Louise Penny writes so beautifully, and that is captured by the audiobook


    Would you listen to another book narrated by Ralph Cosham?

    Perhaps.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    No, it was pretty intense at times, as Penny often is, so it was good to take breaks.


    Any additional comments?

    I'm surprised no one has mentioned Cosham's constant mispronunciation of Francoeur! I'm amazed he did not check on this before recording - VERY distracting to those of us who speak and understand French! And quite unprofessional...I hope omeon has brought it to the attention of he publisher,

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Anne Carson Mays Landing, NJ United States 03-11-13
    Anne Carson Mays Landing, NJ United States 03-11-13 Member Since 2011

    mom

    ratings
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    4
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    "Another Great Story and Performance"
    Where does The Beautiful Mystery rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    Another wonderful tale in the series! Don't miss it!


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Chief Inspector doesn't fail to perform!


    Have you listened to any of Ralph Cosham’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    The performance was just as expected... perfect!


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    As always, it makes you both laugh and cry!


    Any additional comments?

    A wonderful series!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Susan MONTEREY, CA, United States 03-04-13
    Susan MONTEREY, CA, United States 03-04-13
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    "very disappointed"
    Would you try another book from Louise Penny and/or Ralph Cosham?

    no


    What could Louise Penny have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

    Lost interest quickly, had to force myself to listen all the way through. It seems odd to use "Jesus Christ" as a swear word in the context of a monastery.


    What didn’t you like about Ralph Cosham’s performance?

    He spoke too quickly. He didn't differentiate the voices well. Boring. Hard to keep my focus on the story. I sensed that an audio engineer may have slightly sped up the tape, thus interfering with the speaker's artistry.


    Any additional comments?

    One of the reviewers said there was Gregorian Chant. There were maybe 5 measures of music at the introduction and none thereafter. There were many scenes where one could have expected chant. Surely there are free chants on the internet to incorporate. Don't know why anyone is enthusiastic about this audiobook. Perhaps the positive review I read set me up for more disappointment.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    TravisD 02-28-13
    TravisD 02-28-13 Member Since 2007

    Travis

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "I Could've Screamed"

    I'm afraid I've read/listened to my last Gamache book. We'll see what's next. I've been a huge Penny fan, and love the setting of this one. It's obviously well-researched and written. But I'm quite bored with the whole cabal at the Surete de Quebec. More commentary would spoil it for those who don't mind, but if you tire of this sort of thing--- you've been warned.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jean-Ann Grand Blanc, MI, United States 02-27-13
    Jean-Ann Grand Blanc, MI, United States 02-27-13

    Jean-Ann

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Hard Choices"
    Would you consider the audio edition of The Beautiful Mystery to be better than the print version?

    All of the Gamache series are beautifully read. I prefer them to the print because the narrator handles the Quebecois turn of phrase so well.


    Did the plot keep you on the edge of your seat? How?

    It's a good story, but the main thread nor the history held me like it usually does, though I love the history Penny writes into her novels. This novel is gripping in Jean-Guy's self reflection and choices and his relationship with Inspector Gamache. The story introduces a malevolent influence that watching it's impact on Jean-Guy is heartbreaking. If you have listened to this series you are attached to these characters. And Penny's writing make all of their developments, tragic or glorious, a riveting story.


    What does Ralph Cosham bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    A voice for the inner wondering of these characters and his wonderful reading of the Quebecois phrases that make the stories unique and authentic.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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