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The Cruellest Month by Louise Penny

The Cruellest Month (original 2007; edition 2007)

by Louise Penny

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1,258736,290 (4.03)306
Title:The Cruellest Month
Authors:Louise Penny
Info:Headline Book Publishing (2007), Edition: First Edition, Hardcover, 320 pages
Collections:Your library
Tags:fiction, mystery, series, Canada, own, kindle, 2013

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The Cruellest Month by Louise Penny (2007)

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English (72)  French (1)  All languages (73)
Showing 1-5 of 72 (next | show all)
I read the first two books of the series and liked them. They're mysteries with some interesting character development and some neat foreshadowing to a larger story arc that seemed really promising. In this third one, however, over the course of three hundred pages Penny seems to not only try to wrap up every story arc she started, but also slip in a subplot for each one of the many regular characters she's created. The result is a boatload of insufficiently fleshed-out little stories. If they'd been fleshed out over the course of 1000 or 1500 pages, they might have been really good. At the end, every story arc is finished except for one new enemy that is rather clumsily tacked on near the end. Certainly far from a bad book, but could have been so much more. We'll see where the little town of Three Pines goes from here. ( )
  benfulton | Dec 31, 2014 |
As in the previous two books in this series, the sense of place (particularly Three Pines) is powerfully and lovingly depicted. The characters are mostly strong and convincing. The author's wit, sense of humour and turn of phrase are really engaging. However, I found the actual 'mystery' to be a fairly weak story though the events around it and the various sub-plots compensate. Also, I find it quite irritating and distracting that often we are swept from scene to scene within the space of a sentence. Perhaps it was the e-book I read but a gap between paragraphs would at least give a clue that possibly the 'he' now being discussed is a different 'he' from just a moment ago. This is a minor quibble. I am so fascinated by Chief Inspector Gamache and his troupe and the inhabitants of the village that I look forward eagerly to the next installment. ( )
  rosiezbanks | Aug 30, 2014 |
The Cruelest Month by Louise Penny is the third book in the Three Pines Chief Inspector Gamache series, and it just keeps getting better and better. I love revisiting with quirky, charming, recurring characters, and each mystery is interesting and very thought-provoking. But, mostly the books are substantial stories that are fun to read. This quaint village is riddled with murder, but it doesn't seem to detract from the enticing setting. For some reason it reminds me very much of the British television show Midsomer Murders, but in a different locale.

In this installment a seance claims the life of Madeleine Favreau by scaring her to death. Madeleine is a woman who outshines all that come in contact with her and excels in all areas, but someone wanted her dead. Enter Chief Inspector Gamache. He is brilliant, ethical, supportive and protective of his team, each having been discarded or overlooked by the Surete. Even more endearing is the love he has for his family and his special connection to Three Pines. He is very good at his job and recognizes talent in the most unlikeliest of places and people, but though honorable, he disgraced the Surete by taking down a corrupt Superintendent, and long memories lie in wait to force Gamache out.

This is a smart mystery series that does not disappoint. I am already looking forward to the next book in the series. ( )
  2LZ | Aug 29, 2014 |
This is book three of the Chief Inspector Gamache series and it is riveting.

Spring has come to Three Pines complete with new growth and potholes. A psychic is staying over the Easter weekend at the Bed and Breakfast and Gabri has scheduled a seance for Good Friday. Some of the residents are aghast but many are intrigued and go to the bistro to take part. It doesn't quite turn out as planned so they decide to have another one in a few days but this time it will take place in the Hadley mansion which was central to two previous murders. True to form there is another death and Inspector Gamache is called in to investigate. In addition to the murder Gamache is fighting on another front. The Surete du Quebec has been undermined by corrupt officials and Gamache was instrumental in disclosing the wrongdoing. This has made him a target and his own staff has a spy.

I can see why this series is such a big hit. I can't wait to read the next installment. ( )
  gypsysmom | Jul 6, 2014 |
Caught up with this title just recently. I thought I had read all of the Gamache series, but in a FB rereading of the books, culminating in the August publication of the newest one, I found I had missed this one. It lays some groundwork for what is to come in the later books. Good to look back and see plot and character development. Always fun to escape to Three Pines. Louise Penny is a very good author. ( )
  librarian1204 | Jun 11, 2014 |
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» Add other authors (1 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Louise Pennyprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Chabalier, LouiseTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Nagano, KiyomiTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Saint-Germain, MichelTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Stumpf, AndreaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Werbeck, GabrieleTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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April is the cruellest month, breeding
Lilacs out of the dead land, mixing
Memory and desire . . .
- T.S. Eliot, The Waste Land
For my brother Rob and his wonderful family, Audi, Kim, Adam and Sarah, with love
First words
Kneeling in the fragrant moist grass of the village green Clara Morrow carefully hid the Easter egg and thought about raising the dead, which she planned to do right after supper.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Wikipedia in English (2)

Book description
Chief Insp. Armand Gamache and his team investigate another bizarre crime in the tiny Québec village of Three Pines in Penny's expertly plotted third cozy (after 2007's A Fatal Grace). As the townspeople gather in the abandoned and perhaps haunted Hadley house for a séance with a visiting psychic, Madeleine Favreau collapses, apparently dead of fright. No one has a harsh word to say about Madeleine, but Gamache knows there's more to the case than meets the eye. Complicating his inquiry are the repercussions of Gamache having accused his popular superior at the Sûreté du Québec of heinous crimes in a previous case. Fearing there might be a mole on his team, Gamache works not only to solve the murder but to clear his name. Arthur Ellis Award–winner Penny paints a vivid picture of the French-Canadian village, its inhabitants and a determined detective who will strike many Agatha Christie fans as a 21st-century version of Hercule Poirot. (Mar.)

When C.I. Armand Gamache of the Sûreté du Quebec is called to the village the next morning he faces an unusual crime scene. A séance in an old, abandoned house has gone horrifically wrong and a villager lies still, spirited away - apparently frightened to death.
Gamache soon discovers that in idyllic Three Pines not all is as it should be. Toxic secrets lie buried, and something fetid and festering has clawed its way out. And even Gamache has something to hide. He is shielding his team from a terrible truth. A powerful enemy within the Sûreté has planted a traitor amongst them. Who will betray him? And how far will they go to ensure Gamache's downfall?
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0312944500, Mass Market Paperback)

When a group of villagers decide to celebrate Easter with a séance at the Old Hadley House, they are hoping to rid the town of its evil—until one of their party dies of fright. Was this a natural death? Or was the victim somehow helped along?

Enter Chief Inspector Armand Gamache. He knows evil when he sees it. But this time, he’s investigating a case that will force him to face his very own ghosts...as well as those residing in this seemingly idyllic town. Are the residents of Three Pines hiding something great and sinister about their past? Or is April about to deliver on its fateful threat?

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:25:04 -0400)

(see all 5 descriptions)

Chief Inspector Armand Gamache of the S?urete du Quebec is called to investigate the death of a villager at an Easter seance that was held at the Old Hadley House.

(summary from another edition)

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