This blog is dedicated to the amazing staff at the New Canaan Public Library in New Canaan, Connecticut.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

The Brutal Telling by Louise Penny, 2009, * * * *

The Brutal Telling is the fifth entry into the Armande Gamache series by Louise Penny, set in the small Canadian village of Three Pines, which is not located on any map.  The first chapter of this story opens deep in the forest when a conversation is overheard between a man identified only as "The Hermit" and Olivier Brule, the beloved owner of the village bistro.  The tone carries hints of fantasy and the forest primeval as The Hermit warns, "Chaos is here,old son."  There is an immediate sense of isolation and fear and then the story shifts to the village and the discovery of the The Hermit's body in the village Bistro.  Enter Chief Inspector Gamache of the Surete du Quebec and the hunt is on.  Once against Chief Inspector Gamache and his team are called in to strip back layers of lies, exposing both treasures and secrets. No one admits to knowing the murdered man but as secrets are revealed, chaos begins to close in on Olivier and Three Pines itself.  How did Olivier make such a spectacular success of his business?  What past did he leave behind and why has he buried himself in this tiny villge?  Why does every lead in the investigation find its way back to him?  As Olivier grows more frantic, a trail of clues and treasures -- from first editions of Charlotte's Web and Jane Eyre to a spider web with the word "WOE" woven in it -- the Chief Inspector goes across a continent in search of the truth and finally back to Three Pines for the "brutal telling."  The Brutal Telling stands out from the standard issue police procedural books because intertwined with the familiar workings of a murder investigation are poetry, art, and culinary delights plus history, philosophy, & psychology.  Readers new to the series will be as delighted as those returning.  Llike a soothing cup of tea on a cold day,  Louise Penny's literary mysteries should be sipped slowly and savored to the last drop.

No comments:

Post a Comment