Catastrophic Spring Flooding, Blistering Attacks In The Media, And A Mysterious Disappearance Greet Chief Inspector Armand Gamache As He Returns To The Surete Du Quebec In The Latest Novel By New York Times Bestselling Author Louise Penny It S Gamache S First Day Back As Head Of The Homicide Department, A Job He Temporarily Shares With His Previous Second In Command, Jean Guy Beauvoir Flood Waters Are Rising Across The Province In The Middle Of The Turmoil A Father Approaches Gamache, Pleading For Help In Finding His DaughterAs Crisis Piles Upon Crisis, Gamache Tries To Hold Off The Encroaching Chaos, And Realizes The Search For Vivienne Godin Should Be Abandoned But With A Daughter Of His Own, He Finds Himself Developing A Profound, And Perhaps Unwise, Empathy For Her Distraught FatherIncreasingly Hounded By The Question, How Would You Feel, He Resumes The SearchAs The Rivers Rise, And The Social Media Onslaught Against Gamache Becomes Crueler, A Body Is Discovered And In The Tumult, Mistakes Are MadeIn The Next Novel In This Constantly Surprising Series That Deepens And Darkens As It Evolves New York Times Book Review , Gamache Must Face A Horrific Possibility, And A Burning Question What Would You Do If Your Child S Killer Walked Free There WILL be a new Inspector Gamache book 15 coming out in August. Our date came a bit early this year, Armand, which makes it bitter sweet Sweet because I got to catch up with you and our friends in Three Pines a little earlier in the summer than usual Bitter because our time together is already over until next year.I found this year s dose of Louise Penny got off to a slow start Armand Gamache is struggling, as usual, with his place in the Quebec police, and the mystery at the centre of A Better Man focuses on a seemingly straightforward missing person case And I must admit that the story itself didn t really grow much in intensity for me Armand continued to struggle The people of Three Pines were thrown into turmoil because Clara s paintings are getting bad reviews And I quickly guessed what was meant to be a not so obvious resolution to the missing person plot.But for true fans of Louise Penny, like me, the plot is often beside the point As usual, Armand, his family, his colleagues and his neighbours make up for any plot weaknesses It s hard not to be enthralled by these deep feeling and thinking characters, who are also equipped with a good sense of humour and a love for the good things in life Despite the murders and carnage, Louise Penny presents an inspiring and warm world view of human connections I can t believe I just wrote that sentence, but I can t think of any other way to express it But because this was not my favourite of Penny s books, I thought I should probably be fair and give it 4 stars rather than my usual 5 stars And then I read her afterword, and I knew I couldn t rate this one any less than 5 stars Penny explains why she named one of the dogs in the book Fred, which made me teary Then she explained that these books are about community About love and belonging And the great gift of friendship Indeed So the afterword pulled me over the 5 star line not for the first time and it s another five stars for me Because, despite the plot s weaknesses, these are the feelings I walk away with each year after I finish Penny s latest offering.So, goodbye for now, Armand I hope you re planning something good for next year In the meantime, enjoy your family and friends, and don t get into too much trouble Thanks to Edelweiss and the publisher for giving me access to an advance copy. She has done it again With a vengeance Take the same backwater in Qu bec, the same core of main characters, and write fifteen crime stories with that You will probably end up with predictable plots But Louise Penny doesn t Not ever A Better Man is here to prove it Once .Lovers of this series will also enjoy how the author integrated elements of previous books And of course, we meet the same characters Including the poet Ruth And her duck Rosa featured with short refrains, another nice little touch that helps keep all the threads together Reading another book by Louise Penny is like spending some annual time with good old friends And age and experience have the potential to make them better The only bitterness to it, is that we ll have to wait next year to meet them again.My full review will be live in August, near release day In two weeks Jean Guy and Gamache s daughter and grandchild will leave for Paris For good Until then Gamache, who has accepted a demotion back to Chief Inspector, will be his subordinate But those issues are swept aside by catastrophic flooding, a horrific social media smear campaign, and a missing woman with an abusive husband Never a dull moment in Quebec or Three Pines as everyone is racing time and the elements With so much provocation we will find out if Gamache will become a bitter man or a better man This is my favorite mystery series I have enjoyed every book in this series, but some of them felt like coming home to Three Pines than others, and this one was like that for me This book is set back in Three Pines with the villagers with moments in Montreal, as always Some of the aspects that I love the most in this series were especially present in this book 1 A lot of time with Gamache, Beauvoir, and Lacoste as a team especially pertinent in this novel as things might change for them all moving forward 2 Themes of bettering oneself as a person, struggles with morality, questions about what one would do in a similar situation3 The unexpected conclusion to the central mystery 4 Side stories with the villagers including Clara, Myrna, and Reine MarieDespite enjoying all of the Inspector Gamache stories, some of them have taken me a bit longer to sink back into This was not the case with this book Louise Penny s writing in this novel felt like I was sitting down among friends Gamache is at his best in so many ways here and such a character to look up to in times of uncertainty I don t know how she does it, but I m so grateful that she does Fans of the series will love this new addition Thank you from the bottom of my heart to Edelweiss and St Martins Press Minotaur for the ARC of this book. Three Pines Gamache The Bistro A death to solve All the usual and I was so happy to go back to this series once again I hope I never tire of these characters who by now seem like friends than words on a page Everything I wanted and Put this on your must read list. I have quite a few thoughts about this one and it will tae me a bit of time to pull them apart enough to put them out here For now, the short review would be that the mystery was fine, though in some ways rather frustrating than an interesting deductive romp There are, however, excellent reasons why the mystery works the way it does I was probably thinking three stars through most of the book However, the end raises a star and part of that is the exploration of non mystery elements that I thought were well done and important.Now, this is also my first entry into the series The mystery section worked perfectly fine as a standalone I couldn t love the personal bits particularly with the other villagers as it s quite obvious they have so much history I imagine you get used to their lives and quirkiness piece by piece as the series moved along Missing that means I didn t automatically find them endearing. This is the only book in this series I ve not listened to the audio version of, but its also my new favorite in the series When a series gets to 15 books, it can be hard to pick a favorite books 5, 9, 11, 13 you re all still runners up , but this book was closure Not on the series, because I believe there s coming, but on storylines that have been building for the previous 15 books We see relationships end, relationships begin, struggles with power, and overwhelming feelings of love What would you do if your daughter was murdered How do you know who is lying How do we get justice, when it seems so far away We grapple so many tough questions in this book, and I could not stop reading A Better Man is not the continuation of past storylines, but the ending of old and beginning of new Read this series and get to this book when it releases, thank you Edelweiss for the advanced copy I cannot wait to own it personally and read again Great as usual. I don t know how she manages it, but Louise Penny is so consistently solid These books just get better as she goes along, and this one is no exception.
- 448 pages
- A Better Man (Chief Inspector Armand Gamache, #15)
- Louise Penny
- 15 December 2018 Louise Penny