The Brutal Telling (Chief Inspector Armand Gamache #5) by Louise Penny

Book Description:

Published: September 22, 2009

Chaos is coming, old son.
With those words the peace of Three Pines is shattered. As families prepare to head back to the city and children say goodbye to summer, a stranger is found murdered in the village bistro and antiques store. Once again, Chief Inspector Gamache and his team are called in to strip back layers of lies, exposing both treasures and rancid secrets buried in the wilderness.
No one admits to knowing the murdered man, but as secrets are revealed, chaos begins to close in on the beloved bistro owner, Olivier. How did he make such a spectacular success of his business? What past did he leave behind and why has he buried himself in this tiny village? And why does every lead in the investigation find its way back to him?
As Olivier grows more frantic, a trail of clues and treasures— from first editions of Charlotte’s Web and Jane Eyre to a spider web with the word “WOE” woven in it—lead the Chief Inspector deep into the woods and across the continent in search of the truth, and finally back to Three Pines as the little village braces for the truth and the final, brutal telling.
Review –
The plot is a complex blend of mystery, history, greed, art, and lies, yet even with all its complexity, its never overly complicated. It’s quite cleverly constructed, and though some reviewers compare Penny to Agatha Christie, with all due respect to Ms. Christie, and I do love her books, Penny’s books reach further than Christie’s. Penny’s books explore so much more than just the solving of a murder. The Brutal Telling, especially, explores the broader themes that give rise to a violent and desperate act like murder.
 I wondered how long it would take the author, Louise Penny, to have a villager from Three Pines, accused and convicted of a murder and that’s exactly what she did in The Brutal Telling.
We discover that one of the owners and caretakers of the Bistro and Bed and Breakfast is not as good a person from what shows on the outside. He has been greedy most of his life and has lied to everyone, even his partner.
We never find out the name of the hermit or how he came to be in the cabin full of treasures in the woods, or where the treasures came from. There are too many unanswered questions.  I believe the author will tell us in another installment of this series the answers t those and other questions, like-did Chief Inspector Armand Gamache put the right man behind bars.  I think not.
Five stars *****
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The Sculptor by Gregory Funaro

Product Description

Killing Is An ArtIn life, they were flawed. In death, they are perfect works of art–killed, preserved, and carefully molded into replicas of Michelangelo’s most celebrated creations. Only The Sculptor can bring forth their true beauty and teach the world to appreciate his gift.He Is The MasterFBI Special Agent Sam Markham has a reputation for tracking serial killers, but this artful adversary is meticulous, disciplined, and more ruthless than any he’s encountered. The only clue is a note dedicating the latest “statue” to Cathy Hildebrant, an art historian who shares Sam’s fear that the killing has just begun.

And She Is The Perfect Subject

In a quiet Rhode Island town, The Sculptor shapes his latest macabre creation, waiting for Cathy to draw nearer so that his message can be understood at last. And the only way to save her is for Sam to unlock a psychopath’s twisted mind before his final, terrifying masterpiece is revealed. . .

Review –

This was an excellent story that grabs you from the beginning and doesn’t let go. 

It is a bit on the gorey, bloody side but the plot calls for it so it is not overdone.

If you like  suspense and murder mysteries – you will love this one.

 

 

 

 

Sweet Masterpiece by Connie Shelton

Product Description

Amazon.com bestselling author Connie Shelton has wowed readers with her down-to-earth female sleuth in her Charlie Parker mystery series. Now she introduces a new set of characters in a mystery series that contains a little romance, a little magic and a lot of chocolate!

Samantha Sweet is a lady who breaks into houses for a living, and the things she discovers often lead to trouble. When she finds an unmarked grave on a property in a remote spot in Taos County, New Mexico, Sam calls in the authorities. A small mural painted inside a closet in the abandoned house provides clues and Sam is caught up in an investigation. A fortune in artwork, a bogus will, and a wooden box that seems to give Sam powers she never dreamed she possessed–all lead to a genuine mystery for Sam to solve.

Then there is all that chocolate! Sam’s real goal in life is to use her elegant baking skills to open her own pastry shop, Sweet’s Sweets. She’s gaining quite the reputation as a baker with a magical touch, but a few obstacles stand in her way. Her grown daughter shows up on her doorstep–jobless and homeless; her bank account is at an all-time low; and trying to work from the tiny cramped kitchen in her home is becoming impossible.

Somehow, Sam copes and she finds that her dreams might just have a chance of coming true.

Review –

This was my first time reading this author and this series(which so far only consists of two books).  It combined, murder, mystery, humor and romance  to form a story that was a pleasure to read.  I intend to hunt down and find the next book and  I hope that the author plans to continue this series.  It’s a winner.