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The Cruellest Month (A Chief Inspector Gamache Mystery Book 3)

The Cruellest Month (A Chief Inspector Gamache Mystery Book 3) [Kindle Edition]

Louise Penny
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)

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Product Description

Amazon Review

Louise Penny has long been turning out some of the most adroitly written crime fiction in the genre (gleaning a slew of awards in the process), and her well-honed skills are once again to the fore in The Cruellest Month, another sterling entry in the series with her doughty copper, C.I. Gamache of the Sûreté du Quebec.

Once again the Canadian locales are vividly evoked: in the pretty town of Three Pines, it’s spring and spirits are high. But this is crime fiction, and there is (as aficionados know) always a skull beneath the skin. Beneath the surface, destabilising secrets fester. A séance in a crumbling deserted house has had disastrous results, with one of the participants apparently frightened to death. C.I. Gamache, stalwart of the Quebecois Sûreté, is handling the case, but there are corollary distractions for his assignment: one of his team is about throw a heavy spanner into the works – one that my destroy Gamache (but which member of the tem is it?). And there are things that even the detective himself is keeping clandestine.

In a limpid, but subtly poetic style (the T S Eliot reference in the title is à propos), Louise Penny charts her narrative with the kind of quiet assurance that has so pleased readers in such previous books as Still Life and Dead Cold, and a particular pleasure is afforded here by the deeper personal involvement of Gamache in the narrative (as ever he is drawn in a satisfyingly multi-faceted fashion). The atmosphere of deferred revenge and incipient death is pleasurably unsettling. --Barry Forshaw


'[Penny is] perhaps the deftest talent to arrive since Minette Walters' Kirkus

(Kirkus 2008-01-01)

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 529 KB
  • Print Length: 458 pages
  • Publisher: Sphere (7 April 2011)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B004TL0J9S
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #27,412 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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More About the Author

Louise Penny has worked for many years for the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, with expertise in hard news and current affairs. She was born and raised in Toronto, but now lives in a picturesque village in Quebec with her husband. She is the recipient of the CWA New Blood Dagger for Crime Fiction, the CWC Arthur Ellis Award for Best First Novel, the Agatha Award for Best Novel and the Anthony Award for Best First Novel. For more information on Louise Penny and the C. I. Gamache crime series, visit her website

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Customer Reviews

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4.8 out of 5 stars
4.8 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars At last things become clear 30 May 2008
I loved the first two Inspector Gamache books, particularly the setting in french-speaking Canada and the local features that brings out (weather, accessability, french v english speaking cultures, small community life). This third book brings all that again but also solves the crime that is the focus of the book while also answering the conundrums that have been doing the rounds in the previousl two volumes. To say more would be to spoil the plot.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 5 stars - Top Cosy Crime 19 Jun 2008
they call this Cosy Crime which makes me laugh !! This is an excellent book it keeps you going all through the book, nicely building on the previous 2 books and getting to the bottom of the situation "back at base" I Won;t say more about that in fear of spoiling what is the darkest part of the book.

French Canada really comes to life in this series - if you like Agatha Christie and like something a bit different this is the series for you.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Deserves to be better known 30 Jan 2009
After a clunky start the novel gathers pace to deliver a stylish and tension-filled story, the twin plot lines eventually merging to open a window into the souls of men and ask questions about the nature of relationships.

Well written, with engrossing characters and a great sense of setting, it delivers enough twists to satisfy without trying to be too clever.

Unlike one or two better known, and more heavily hyped, writers Penny delivers with a sense of freshness and avoids both unpleasantness and cliché.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Severe Pleasure 15 Nov 2010
My first Louise Penny book, selected by chance, proved a severe pleasure. I was absolutely bowled over by the intelligence and wit of the writing and charaterisation and simply terrified by the storytelling! One of the most absorbing, frightening, wonderfully enjoyable crime novels I have ever read. I found myself shaking with terror as I read. I cannot recommend it too highly. Like others, I have been seduced by the French Canadian setting and the town of Three Pines and its occupants just as much as I have been charmed by Inspector Gamache's quiet integrity. A must for anyone who wants to read a book that is three-dimensional,astute yet immensley satisfying to the lover of crime novels. A triumph ...and it made me hungry for more!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Best so Far 1 Aug 2012
By Mr. Ross Maynard VINE VOICE
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
The third on the Inspector Gamache series by Louise Penny is the best so far. An intriguing and enjoyable murder, coupled with plotting within the police force itself, combine to make it a great read from the outset, with a clever Agatha Christie style ending where Gamache brings all the suspects together to reveal the murderer.

I do have two slight concerns about this series - firstly you probably need to read them in order to fully understand the characters; and secondly, always having the murders take place in the tiny village of Three Pines is stretching credibility more than a little, and always nags at the back of my mind - how many murderers can one village house?!

It is a gentle kind of story, without a hard-bitten detective in sight, but exceptionally good writing lift this above many in the genre.
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4.0 out of 5 stars I love all of the Gamache stories 3 July 2014
By PaulaP
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I love all of the Gamache stories. They picture a beautiful part of the world and leave you feeling good
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5.0 out of 5 stars Thoroughly recommended 21 May 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This is the third book in a series starring Inspector Armand Gamache from the Sûreté du Quebec and again is set around a death in the fictional village of Three Pines.

‘Once found Three Pines was never forgotten but it was only ever found by people lost.’

Although you can read all of Louise Penny’s books as stand-alone, it is probably better to start with the first one as many of the characters develop as the series continues and to date there are ten books in the series.

It is a nice meaty book to get in to with flashbacks to a previous controversy concerning the Inspector which is explained, to an extent, as the book progresses. Louise deals with the insecurities of people’s characters, intertwining their strengths as well. The intricacies of living in a small village that boasts a set of shops, and a bistro where people gather and are looked after well by the extrovert couple of Olivier and Gabri who also run the local B & B.

It is early April, Easter weekend and eggs are being hidden to be found by the children and a séance is held by a visiting medium/psychic. A haunted house and a death follow, fear and terror and horror invade all those attending. The Sûreté du Quebec become involved as it is realised the victim didn't suffer a natural death.

Louise Penny is able to describe the village, its inhabitants, the after effects and consequences of a sudden death drawing you intimately into the village and the people who live there and we also find out more about the characters of the Sûreté du Quebec involved in the investigation.

A good book is one where the characters stay with you long after you have put the book down and this is one such book.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Another winner! 23 April 2014
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Wow, fandabidosi as they say here in Scotland! This is book three in the series and just as fabulous as the first two. Three Pines is the setting and on Good Friday the residents decided to spice up their lives with a seance. When nothing much happens they go a little further and rather than hold it at the Bistro, opt for the derelict haunted house up on the hill. Not everyone is happy about this and when one of their own drops dead from sheer fright, it takes the sense and sensibility of dear Gamashe and his team to sort it and them all out. Oh I loved this one! Gamashe is still burdened with his ongoing "situation" back at the Suretee offices where things are starting to turn sinisterly disaterous for him and his team but, professional as ever, he focuses on what he is there catch a murderer. It's all in here; witchcraft, murder, myths and legends, folklore, herbalisim, Pagans and Christian battling their demons! This author must get so much pleasure from writing this series of novels and you can't help but become entwined in the lives of all the characters she has imagined (and maybe fall, just a little, for the enchanting Armand Gamashe!) I have The Murder Stone to read next so will be looking forward to that. Fantastic, would give this series so many more than 5 stars if I could, highly recommended.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Published 1 month ago by wesley rogers
4.0 out of 5 stars Another Inspector Gamache thriller.
In this book we meet again the inhabitants of Three Pines, who are once again embroiled in a rather nasty murder. Read more
Published 4 months ago by Dr. B. Prynn
5.0 out of 5 stars totally addictive
The whole series is fantastic.I have the highest praise for the characterisation I feel I know everyone in three Pines and I love the way the stories are all linked.
Published 6 months ago by Mrs Shirley Daynes
5.0 out of 5 stars Better and better . . . .
I love Louise Penny! The characters in her books are so diverse and yet so rounded. there is a feel good factor as the who- dun-it is always solved, but the always present Arnot... Read more
Published 8 months ago by Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars The Cruellest Month
I came across this author by accident and wow! Fabulous plotting and great characters. If, like me, you are little bored with serial killers and prefer a good old-fashioned... Read more
Published 9 months ago by T. King
5.0 out of 5 stars Fab Who Dunnit
If you haven't read any chief Inspector Gamache books and you like who dunnit's give it a try. I have read all in the series and can't wait for the next one
Published 16 months ago by Fab Fran
5.0 out of 5 stars Another winner from Louise Penny!
This series just gets better and better and I thoroughly recommend them to any mystery lover .Yes they are cosy but the artists community in Three Pines is lovingly portrayed and... Read more
Published 18 months ago by Jules
5.0 out of 5 stars Inspector Gamache
The Inspector Gamache books are a joy to read.
The setting of Quebec province and the village of Three Pines is excellent. Read more
Published on 3 May 2012 by sues
5.0 out of 5 stars Canada's gentle detective
Inspector Gamache is a very thoughtful, reserved policeman, he is quite out of the ordinary and one cannot help but admire him throughout all the novels. Read more
Published on 17 April 2012 by Cher
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