A rule against murder

Louise Penny

Book - 2009

In this classic drawing room mystery, Chief Inspector Armand Gamache is looking forward to celebrating his wedding anniversary at the remote, luxurious Manoir Bellechasse. As Gamache's holiday becomes a busman's anniversary, he learns that the seemingly peaceful lodge is a place where visitors come to escape their past, until that past catches up with them.

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Penny, Louise. Three Pines mystery ; v. 4.
Three Pines mystery.
New York : Minotaur Books 2009.
1st ed
Item Description
Simultaneously published as The murder stone in Canada, the UK, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa and India.
Physical Description
viii, 322 p. ; 25 cm
Main Author
Louise Penny (-)
Review by Booklist Reviews

*Starred Review* Readers who haven t discovered Louise Penny and her Armand Gamache series yet are in for a treat. In the latest entry, Chief Inspector Gamache of the Sûreté du Québec has traveled to the luxurious and remote Manoir Bellechasse with his wife, Reine-Marie. Each year they return to the manor to celebrate their wedding anniversary on July 1, Canada Day. This year they are fellow guests with the Finney family. Two of the members of that family are old friends Peter and Clara Morrow from the village of Three Pines on the Rivière Bella Bella, where the first three books in this series took place. Not only are we treated to Penny s usual rich characterizations, but the atmospheric and beautiful language will make you want to take your next vacation at the manoir. Of course, a crime does occur, and Gamache ends up on a busman s holiday. One of the eccentric Finney family members dies in a very grotesque manner, and Gamache calls in his team to help solve the mystery. First, Armand has to figure out why the victim was killed, and, in fact, it wouldn t hurt to determine how the deed was done. Suspects abound, naturally, and Gamache sorts through them with aplomb. One of the best traditional mystery series currently being published.

Review by Library Journal Reviews

Quebec Chief Inspector Armand Gamache receives an unpleasant surprise during a getaway to celebrate his wedding anniversary. Peter and Clara Morrow, friends from the village of Three Pines, are there for a family reunion, and old family rivalries instigate murder in this series entry from multiaward winner Penny, who lives near Montreal. With a national tour and library marketing campaign. Copyright 2008 Reed Business Information.

Review by Library Journal Reviews

Canadian author Penny (Still Life; A Fatal Grace; The Cruelest Month) has garnered numerous awards for her elegant literary mysteries featuring the urbane Armand Gamache, chief police inspector from Quebec. Gamache is intelligent, observant, and implacable, indispensible attributes for the sophisticated detection that characterizes this series. Here, he must solve a particularly vicious murder he encounters when he and his beloved wife change venue from Montreal to a nearby rustic retreat renowned for its tranquility. Not surprisingly, this vacation turns into a busman's holiday, as murder follows him to the inn. Penny's engaging, well-crafted mystery probes the dynamics of a severely dysfunctional family and the festering wounds that lead to its ultimate destruction. Her psychological acumen, excellent prose, and ingenious plotting make this essential reading for mystery lovers and admirers of superb literary fiction. Fans of Dorothy L. Sayers, P.D. James, and Elizabeth George will also be delighted. Highly recommended for all public libraries. [See Prepub Mystery, LJ 9/1/08.]—Lynne F. Maxwell, Villanova Univ. Sch. of Law Lib., PA [Page 104]. Copyright 2008 Reed Business Information.

Review by Publishers Weekly Reviews

Murder interrupts Chief Insp. Armand Gamache and his wife's annual summer holiday at Quebec's isolated, lake-front Manoir Bellechasse in Agatha-winner Penny's intriguing, well-crafted fourth mystery (after 2008's The Cruelest Month). Irene Finney, the matriarch of a large eccentric family having a reunion at the Manoir, marks the event by having installed in the lodge's garden a statue of the long-dead father of her middle-aged children. When the massive statue falls and crushes one of the daughters, Gamache investigates and discovers no love lost among the surviving offspring. Also in the suspect pool are Bellechasse's owner, chef and matre d'. Despite the scorn the snobbish Finneys heap on Gamache's sleuthing efforts as well as his own infamous family tree, the inspector treats them all respectfully as he seeks to bring a killer to justice. Seamless, often lyrical prose artfully reveals the characters' flaws, dreams and blessings. Author tour. (Jan.) [Page 34]. Copyright 2008 Reed Business Information.

Review by Publisher Summary 1

When Chief Inspector Armand Gamache makes a wedding anniversary trip to luxurious Menoir Bellechasse, he finds his plans interrupted by his fellow guests as well as old secrets that serve as a prelude to murder.

Review by Publisher Summary 2

A Rule Against Murder, the fourth book in Louise Penny's award-winning and critical revered mystery series features the wise and beleaguered Inspector Armand Gamache.

It is the height of summer, and Armand and Reine-Marie Gamache are celebrating their wedding anniversary at Manoir Bellechasse, an isolated, luxurious inn not far from the village of Three Pines. But they're not alone. The Finney family—rich, cultured, and respectable—has also arrived for a celebration of their own.

The beautiful Manoir Bellechasse might be surrounded by nature, but there is something unnatural looming. As the heat rises and the humidity closes in, some surprising guests turn up at the family reunion, and a terrible summer storm leaves behind a dead body. It is up to Chief Inspector Gamache to unearth secrets long buried and hatreds hidden behind polite smiles. The chase takes him to Three Pines, into the dark corners of his own life, and finally to a harrowing climax.