The playwright and novelist Augustus Maltravers and his actress girlfriend Tess Davy have planned a relaxing week staying with friends in Bellringer Street, an historic thoroughfare near the grounds of Edenbridge House, stately home of the Earl of Pembury.
The only foreseeable disruption looks to be the imminent arrival of their hosts’ baby – which is quite disruptive enough as far as Maltravers is concerned.
But greater dramas start to unfold when a skeleton is stolen from the cellars of the House.
At first it seems no more than a bizarre joke but, suddenly, Maltravers and Tess find themselves caught up in a terrifying cycle of vengeance and murder.
The heir to the estate, Simon, Lord Dunford, is found murdered.
Though he was a likable sort, he was thoroughly hated by his next-in-succession: his caddish cousin Oliver Hawkhurst and the estate’s coldly efficient secretary, Mister York.
With everyone around them under suspicion, Maltravers and Tess find it increasingly difficult to get to the bottom of the mystery.
Who had the strongest motive for murder?
And will they strike again?
I did not like this book at all. I found it slow and boring and I could hardly wait to finish it.
Louise Penny wrote:
l’ve been meaning to mention THE HANGMAN for a while. Some of you wonder if it’s part of the Gamache books. A very good question. In fact, I wrote THE HANGMAN a couple of years ago as part of GoodReads Canada – an initiative for adult emerging readers. The idea is to give adults who are improving their literacy skills adult books to read – so they don’t have to read children’s books. It’s a wonderful idea – one that started, I believe, in the UK and has since spread. THE HANGMAN is in fact a novella – written intentionally at a grade 3 level…simple words and sentences, but adult themes. It’s set in Three Pines and is a mystery featuring Gamache. But, it doesn’t really fit into the actual arc of the characters….sort of a ‘one off’. Hope I’m making sense. It’s also a fundraiser for literacy, and there are lots of wonderful writers contributing novellas to GoodReads and similar projects. It’s also good, I’ve since learned, for people learning English as second language – or after a stroke and needing to re-learn the language. So pleased to be a small part of this terrific initiative. I think your local bookstore can order a copy of THE HANGMAN, or other books in the literacy series, if you know someone who might like them.
On a cold November morning, a jogger runs through the woods in the peaceful Quebec village of Three Pines. On his run, he finds a dead man hanging from a tree.
The dead man was a guest at the local Inn and Spa. He might have been looking for peace and quiet, but something else found him. Something horrible.
Did the man take his own life? Or was he murdered? Chief Inspector Armand Gamache is called to the crime scene. As Gamache follows the trail of clues, he opens a door into the past. And he learns the true reason why the man came to Three Pines.
This is just a very short story involving a hanging man in the village of Three Pines and it is written on a third grade level (see above)
Even though it is short, it still has the same “who-dun-it” air that all of the Inspector Gamache has and I enjoyed it very much.