Published: August 30, 3011
“Hearts are broken,” Lillian Dyson carefully underlined in a book. “Sweet relationships are dead.”
But now Lillian herself is dead. Found among the bleeding hearts and lilacs of Clara Morrow’s garden in Three Pines, shattering the celebrations of Clara’s solo show at the famed Musée in Montreal. Chief Inspector Gamache, the head of homicide at the Sûreté du Québec, is called to the tiny Quebec village and there he finds the art world gathered, and with it a world of shading and nuance, a world of shadow and light. Where nothing is as it seems. Behind every smile there lurks a sneer. Inside every sweet relationship there hides a broken heart. And even when facts are slowly exposed, it is no longer clear to Gamache and his team if what they’ve found is the truth, or simply a trick of the light.
Another crime has been committed in Three Pines and the body winds up in the garden of Clara Morrow, no less.
It happens at a reception held at Clara’s house the evening after the solo showing of her art work. The dead woman is someone from Clara’s long ago past, a best friend who was really a jealous vindictive person. Clara is never under serious suspicion because there are too many other people who had more motive to get rid of the victim.
Along side of the murder story, we learn that Inspector Beauvoir is leaning heavily on pain killers to function while his body still heals from the shooting six months earlier. We also find out that he is resentful of the Chief Inspector for leaving him during the gun fight at the vacant warehouse. If he was thinking clearly he would realize that the Chief Inspector saved his life and then went on to capture one of the terrorists and then get shot too. Beauvoir has also separated/divorced his wife and now is wanting to approach Annie, the Chief Inspector’s daughter, because he has had a crush on her for years.
The crime is solved and all is well. The Chief Inspector orders Beauvoir to get counseling and at the end of the story Beauvoir calls Annie, but we are left with our imaginations as to their conservation. (I forgot to mention that Annie and her husband, David, are having trouble and are separating)
Five stars *****