I was thrilled to discover the novel Still Life for two reasons. First it is an excellent crime novel. Secondly, it is the first in author Louise Penny’s Three Pines mystery series, which means that there are more novels featuring Chief Inspector Armand Gamache available for immediate consumption!
Still Life starts off conventionally enough. On the outskirts of the quaint Canadian village, Three Pines, an elderly lady is found dead in the woods. The Poirot-like Gamache and his team of homicide investigators are sent from Montreal to investigate the suspicious death.
At first glance, the case is a non-starter. The villagers are convinced that Ms. Neal’s demise is nothing more than a tragic hunting accident, but Gamache is not so sure. In fact, nothing in Three Pines is a sure thing.
Still Life is a quintessential “English cozy,” albeit set in Canada. But with her convincing characters and sly dialogue, Louise Penny transcends the tea and crumpets crime novel.
When I find a new crime series, I tend to gobble them up all at once. So, of course, I have already started the second Chief Inspector Gamache mystery, A Fatal Grace. But after this one, I promise to pace myself!