Book Review: The Cruellest Month by Louise Penny

During the past two weeks I did something I have not done in a while: I sat on our sofa with a hot drink and did some reading. The first book I picked up was one my cousin had passed on to me with the comment, “This story is good!” And it was.

Chief Inspector Gamache is the main character of the story and, even though I had not read the other stories featuring him, I could follow the reasons for his actions as he worked with his colleagues to solve a murder that had taken place in Three Pines, a small village not far from Montreal. While Gamache goes about the business of solving murder, he is working on a more personal demon that is nipping at his heels. This secondary story is interwoven with the main one in such a way that it does not interfere with the reader’s understanding of the plot at hand.

The Cruellest Month is certainly a page turner – and kept me on the sofa for many hours. I wanted to find out who had murdered a woman who appeared to be friendly in a place that is so welcoming to those looking for comfort and rest. Put into the mix a house that is believed to be haunted, a colourful collection of villagers, a thread of unease running among those working for the Sûreté, and you have a recipe for an enthralling story. Fast-paced and riveting, one can understand why this novel has won numerous awards. If you enjoy thrillers, then this story is the one for you.

As I put down this novel at the end of the story, I decided I had not only enjoyed solving this murder with Gamache – but that I had to read the books published afterwards to find out what happens to the lovable Chief Inspector.

Have you read any of Louise Penny’s novels?

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2015


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