Still Life – Review

img_1848I’ve heard nothing but good things about Louise Penny’s Chief Inspector Armand Gamache series, so I decided I’d give it a try this year since I was able to pick up one of the books at a used book sale recently. This was my first audiobook of the year and I had a bit of a hard time focusing on this one. I think the changing perspectives made it difficult to figure out if I wasn’t listening super closely. Nonetheless, I found such joy in Lousie Penny’s writing style and can see why she’s a beloved author.


As the early morning mist clears on Thanksgiving Sunday, the homes of Three Pines come to life – all except one…

To locals, the village is a safe haven. So they are bewildered when a well-loved member of the community is found lying dead in the maple woods. Surely it was an accident – a hunter’s arrow gone astray. Who could want Jane Neal dead?

In a long and distinguished career with the Sûreté du Quebec, Chief Inspector Armand Gamache has learned to look for snakes in Eden. Gamache knows something dark is lurking behind the white picket fences, and if he watches closely enough, Three Pines will begin to give up its secrets…

My favorite thing about this book, as I expected it to be based on friends reviews, was the setting. I haven’t read many books set in Canada. Honestly, the country is a bit of a mystery to us Americans. Canadians our quiet neighbors – they mind their own business except to tell disgruntled Americans to stay South where we belong. 😉 Despite the town of Three Pines being a fictional place, it was easy to imagine it being real. I loved learning a bit more about Quebec, along with some historical facts I hadn’t known before. Three Pines is the kind of place readers love – small, cozy, with close friendships, and just enough mystery to keep things interesting.

Armand Gamache, is luckily a likeable character, since I’m planning to hang out with him for several more stories. I’m looking forward to learning more about him as the series goes on. He is hardworking, observant, serious when he needs to be, and he seems to have infallible morals.

It’s been a long time since I’ve read a cozy mystery and while I didn’t love this one because of the multiple perspectives and side stories, I will be excited to read more. I think the series will grow on me as I become more familiar with the town and characters. I also enjoyed Louise Penny’s ability to delve deep into the human psyche along with her subtle humor.

“I think many people love their problems. Gives them all sorts of excuses for not growing up and getting on with life.”

Rating: 3 stars

Purchase on Amazon.

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7 Comments Add yours

  1. Carol says:

    Welcome to three pines! 🌲🌲🌲
    I think the series starts to get better and better with book 4 (2&3 were ok but not favs). I love Gamache! I have about 3 favs in the series….some I liked better than others….but all were at least solid 3 reads for me…..a smattering of 4s and one solid 5! I look forward to each year’s August release!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you!! That seems to be the consensus – everyone tells me it gets better and better. That’s exciting to hear! I’m eager for the next library hold to come through. ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Darina says:

    Great review! I wasn’t too sure about this series and whether I would enjoy it. You have convinced me now!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Everyone says it gets better and better too. I should be getting the next book soon through Overdrive.


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