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Publisher's Summary

The discovery of a dead body in the woods on Thanksgiving Weekend brings Chief Inspector Armand Gamache and his colleagues from the Surete du Quebec to a small village in the Eastern Townships. Gamache cannot understand why anyone would want to deliberately kill well-loved artist Jane Neal, especially any of the residents of Three Pines - a place so free from crime it doesn't even have its own police force. But Gamache knows that evil is lurking somewhere behind the white picket fences and that, if he watches closely enough, Three Pines will start to give up its dark secrets....

Coming soon: Book 2 in the Chief Inspector Gamache series, Dead Cold. Winter in Three Pines, and the sleepy village is carpeted in snow. It's a time of peace and goodwill - until a scream pierces the biting air. A spectator at the annual Boxing Day curling match has been fatally electrocuted. Despite the large crowd, there are no witnesses and - apparently - no clues.

©2005 Louise Penny (P)2006 Isis Publishing Ltd

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

wonderful start to a well written series

Great writing, good performance, ocassional odd pace skip. An excellent beginning to an intriguing series that builds anticipation and depth.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Still life

A great introduction to Inspector Ganesh and 3 Pines. Having read the latest on the series first it was great to meet the characters early in their careers. Enjoyable as a stand-alone, it’s like a retreat with a friend to learn what had moulded them before you met them.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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Warm and Cozy Mystery

This was my first time reading this series and I loved it. Narration was well done and it was easy to listen to. I am now intrigued by Inspector Gamache and will be listening to book 2.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Enjoyable listen

Overall a really enjoyable book. Good character development, good twists and turns, and a great performance. Realm enjoyable experience.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

new author for me

great story. not my favorite narrator. love the characters . looking forward to book 2
#audible1

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
  • TJ
  • 2018-09-18

OK story. OK characters. A bit too obvious.

A little too obvious for my tastes. Not much of a mystery. The characters weren't very well developed. I guess I like more mystery in my mysteries or more realistic characters. It was overall pleasant. I liked that there was a town where people can afford to live as an artist and actually own a home. The best part of the book was the friendly mood and sense of connection in the community.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Great Read!<br />loved this book.It keeps your interest

There were more than one 3am times when I couldn't put this book down and sleep...I just had to know what was coming next.Will be reading the rest of the books in this journey!

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Loved it

Loved the writing, performance. Pleasant surprise, I had not considered Louise Penny, glad I did.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

A very good read!

I love that this book is set in Canada, the characters are believable and I am looking forward to reading more stories in this series!

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • bg
  • 2016-03-28

Worried for nothing!

I love this series and author dearly. But I was afraid to buy these in audiobook format as I couldn't have stood listening to the French get all mangled up. Thankfully the narrator made me feel right at home. I am very impressed and glad to know I can safely continue to purchase this series!

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Susan Moore
  • 2017-07-25

Better the second time around.

I read this book first and then decided to listen to audio version several years later. While I actually enjoyed the story more the second time around, I did not enjoy the performance. I found the english/french versions of Gamache very distracting, irritating and unnecessary. I know Penny indicates that he speaks like a British royal in english, but I found the switch too jarring.

The story is wonderful. Penny has great storytelling ability. If you enjoy cozy mysteries then this series does not disappoint.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • angi4262
  • 2015-08-27

Loved it

So glad to find the beginning of a great series. I'll be looking up more!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • DIANE
  • 2014-06-04

Love Louise Penny's writing

I read Still Life out of order. I had already read a number of books in the Inspector Gamache series and decided that it was a good idea to go back and start from the beginning. One of the disappointing things about this decision was hearing the rendition by Adam Sims. Had I not heard Ralph Cosham's masterful rendition in later books, I would not have had anything to compare this book to. But I have, and Mr. Cosham brings something special to Ms. Penny's books that Mr. Sims was not able to accomplish, despite a good performance overall. As usual, this was a twisted, convoluted story that left the reader wondering "who dun nit" until quite far into the story. I just love the characters... especially Ruth Zardo.
This is a fascinating group of people and I will keep reading until I have caught up. Can't wait to read the new book!!!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Tammy Sheedy
  • 2015-12-21

Realistic and brilliant

Beautiful story of Life, and friendship. Very well written, narrator was brilliant. Slow beginning but then was sucked in, transfixed till the last word.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Lyn
  • 2015-06-15

Easy Listening

Outcome not as obvious as you expect, Intrigued me enough to listen to the 2nd book and now I am hooked on the series

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • S. Howarth
  • 2015-06-05

Good story - just one thing drove me crazy...

This was a good story, with interesting characters. The one thing that drove me nuts was that the narrator did not have a consistent voice for the main character (Inspector Gamash). He kept alternating back and forth through the whole book: sometimes the Inspector had a thick French accent, and sometimes he had a thick British accent. I found this very annoying. Otherwise I was happy with the book and the performance.

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    1 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
  • connor
  • 2017-08-25

dreadful

I disliked all the characters from the start. This never improved. Had a dull ending.

0 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    1 out of 5 stars
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  • Pierre Gauthier
  • 2017-10-01

Pathetic!

This novel is apparently the first of a series set in rural Québec.

Sadly, it is totally devoid of interest:

• the characters are shallow and stereotypical: a rebellious teen-ager, a chubby, cheerful, gay restaurant owner, a foul-mouthed perpetually angry poet, etc.
• the plot is at once predictable and ridiculous: a lost will, a job suspension for thinking outside the box, a finale in a snake pit (which turns out to be an illusion), etc.
• an irritating obsession with food, complete with lengthy descriptions of … muffins;
• a poor knowledge of Québec culture despite its use for providing colour and originality; much is made for instance of Thanksgiving dinner which is by no means a local tradition;
• multiple basic errors in the use of French, which could have easily been avoided by hiring a francophone proof-reader.

The audio version compounds the aggravation with a narrator who does not adequately know French (pronouncing for instance “Société des alcools” to rhyme with fool) and who gives the main character a Québec accent whereas we are told very early on that he studied in the UK and speaks an impeccable British English.

Overall, there is no justification for recommending this work to anyone.