Review – Still Life (Chief Inspector Armand Gamache #1) by Louise Penny

338691I’ve been reading more mysteries lately than in the past.  My reading cycles change occasionally and they fit my mood better than some of the supernatural work I was reading for the last 18-24 months.  When I decided to pick up Still Life, I went in with guarded expectations.  The first review that popped up on my Goodreads page was a 1-star from a very fair reviewer but I decided to give it a shot anyway and I’m glad I did.

Still Life is the first in the Inspector Gamache series.  He is an experienced investigator with the Sûreté du Québec and is tasked with looking into a death in a small village outside Montreal.  An elderly woman was found dead after being shot with an arrow and it’s up to his team to determine if it was an accident or murder.  Dun dun duuun.

Penny created a book that is somewhere between a cozy mystery and a crime novel.  Not too light-hearted but not too intense either.  Just right for this story.  Gamache is an interesting character and we’ve only begun to peel away his layers.  The residents of Three Pines are a motley crew and I can see why the writer set this series in this village.  There are always plenty of secrets and lies in a small town.

This was the author’s first novel and, already, her writing talent shines through.  It will be fun to catch up on this series and find out more about Gamache and Three Pines.

4/5 stars.


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