Still Life by Louise Penny
A Chief Inspector Gamache Novel

80%

17 Critic Reviews

The slight difference Clara notices between the murals and Jane’s painting holds the clue to her murder. Cerebral, wise and compassionate, Gamache is destined for stardom. Don’t miss this stellar debut.
-Kirkus

Synopsis

Winner of the New Blood Dagger, Arthur Ellis, Barry, Anthony, and Dilys awards.

Chief Inspector Armand Gamache of the Surêté du Québec and his team of investigators are called in to the scene of a suspicious death in a rural village south of Montreal. Jane Neal, a local fixture in the tiny hamlet of Three Pines, just north of the U.S. border, has been found dead in the woods. The locals are certain it's a tragic hunting accident and nothing more, but Gamache smells something foul in these remote woods, and is soon certain that Jane Neal died at the hands of someone much more sinister than a careless bowhunter.
Still Life introduces not only an engaging series hero in Inspector Gamache, who commands his forces---and this series---with integrity and quiet courage, but also a winning and talented new writer of traditional mysteries in the person of Louise Penny.

 

About Louise Penny

See more books from this Author
LOUISE PENNY is The New York Times and Globe and Mail bestselling author of seven novels featuring Chief Inspector Armand Gamache. Her debut, Still Life, won the John Creasey Dagger and the Arthur Ellis, Barry, Anthony, and Dilys Awards, and was named one of the five Mystery/Crime Novels of the Decade by Deadly Pleasures magazine. Penny was the first author ever to win the Agatha Award for Best Novel four times—for A Fatal Grace, The Cruelest Month, The Brutal Telling (which also received the Anthony Award for Best Novel), and Bury Your Dead (which also won the Dilys, Arthur Ellis, Anthony, Macavity, and Nero Awards). She lives in a small village south of Montréal.
 
Published September 30, 2008 by Minotaur Books. 321 pages
Genres: Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Literature & Fiction, Business & Economics. Fiction
Bestseller Status:
icon6
Peak Rank on Jul 30 2017
icon1
Weeks as Bestseller
Bookmark Counts:
1
Want to Read
Add Critic Review

Critic reviews for Still Life
All: 17 | Positive: 15 | Negative: 2

Kirkus

Excellent
on Jun 24 2010

The slight difference Clara notices between the murals and Jane’s painting holds the clue to her murder. Cerebral, wise and compassionate, Gamache is destined for stardom. Don’t miss this stellar debut.

Read Full Review of Still Life: A Chief Inspector... | See more reviews from Kirkus

Publishers Weekly

Excellent
on Sep 12 2017

Memorable characters include Jane; Jane's shallow niece, Yolande; and a delightful gay couple, Olivier and Gabri. Filled with unexpected insights, this winning traditional mystery sets a solid foundation for future entries in the series.

Read Full Review of Still Life: A Chief Inspector... | See more reviews from Publishers Weekly

BellaOnline

Good
Reviewed by Karen Hancock on Mar 02 2016

For suspense/thriller/mystery lovers, Still Life is highly recommended. Readers will enjoy the naiveté of the characters – typical of a small town – and feel like they are actually experiencing the scenarios vicariously.

Read Full Review of Still Life: A Chief Inspector...

Spinetingler Magazine

Good
Reviewed by Gloria Feit on Oct 22 2013

The pace of the book, casual till near the book's conclusion, picks up quite a bit at that point until the identity of the murderer is revealed. An enjoyable read.

Read Full Review of Still Life: A Chief Inspector...

Reviewing the Evidence

Above average
Reviewed by Barbara Franchi on May 01 2006

One expects St Croix (my mother-in-law's maiden name), Pelletier, Trudeau, Cote, Gagnon or Tremblay, not Gamache, Brule, or Beauvoir. The author is a Canadian who was a broadcaster for the CBC. She should have known better. That said, I think this is a laudable first effort and I would like to spend more time with the residents of Three Pines.

Read Full Review of Still Life: A Chief Inspector...

Curled Up

Good
Reviewed by Michael Leonard on Oct 05 2014

Penny manages to keep the plot moving as the unhurried, unperturbed, unstoppable Gamache and his team of crack detectives, including the insecure and arrogant young Yvette Nichol, navigates an intricate web of deception, where art runs in the family and where everyone around treats it like law.

Read Full Review of Still Life: A Chief Inspector...

Devourer of Books

Good
on Mar 25 2010

I really , really enjoyed this book...This was a fun cozy mystery that still kept my brain whirring, highly recommended.

Read Full Review of Still Life: A Chief Inspector...

Jen's Book Thoughts

Excellent
Reviewed by Jen Forbus on Jul 28 2009

As much as I enjoy character, this book isn't simply a collection of wonderful character. There is a rich depth to the plot that takes it beyond good to the realm of excellent.

Read Full Review of Still Life: A Chief Inspector...

The Book Stop

Below average
Reviewed by curlygeek04 on Nov 26 2011

I do believe this series will improve, and there was enough to like that I might read more. I’m just not sure this is a series that rises to the top of the reading list.

Read Full Review of Still Life: A Chief Inspector...

The Nature of Things

Good
Reviewed by Dorothy Borders on Dec 20 2012

This series is nominally within the mystery genre, but it is so much more than that. Penny writes with such lucidity and grace about everyday people, people that any of us may know. She gives us character studies that reveal those people and their relationships to us.

Read Full Review of Still Life: A Chief Inspector...

Wordsmithonia

Good
Reviewed by Ryan on Apr 25 2013

So the only other thing I'm going to say is this, if you are a mystery fan or think you could be given the right book, please pick up Still Life, and discover my dream community for yourself.

Read Full Review of Still Life: A Chief Inspector...

The Infinite Curio

Good
Reviewed by Kay on Sep 13 2011

Her love for the province is obvious, and so her novel is filled with its beauties and quirks. I loved that, and I think it’s obvious that my not-so-objective review had a lot to do with how fun it was to read a story taking place in a universe I really know.

Read Full Review of Still Life: A Chief Inspector...

chasing bawa

Above average
on Oct 29 2012

I initially found Still Life a little slow. But it’s a slow burning book and by the end, I was racing through to find out exactly whodunnit.

Read Full Review of Still Life: A Chief Inspector...

Inside the Mind of a Biliophile

Good
Reviewed by Eustacia Tan on Oct 19 2015

I loved this book, and it was a captivating read that took me away for a while, even though it's not the first time I read it. I can't wait for a bit more time, where I can start on the second book.

Read Full Review of Still Life: A Chief Inspector...

WordLily

Good
on Apr 12 2010

I also loved the place of prominence given to the visual arts. And I enjoyed getting a glimpse into small-town Quebec.

Read Full Review of Still Life: A Chief Inspector...

Tip Of The Iceberg

Good
Reviewed by Terri B. on Apr 06 2008

Still Life is Louise Penny's debut novel. It is written and plotted well. The characters are well drawn and memorable. I look forward to reading the other two books in this series ... soon!

Read Full Review of Still Life: A Chief Inspector...

https://missfarin.wordpress.com

Good
on Jan 22 2012

Much like Still Life is a modern Agatha Christie mystery, Inspector Gamache is a modern Poirot who solves his cases by a combination of acute observation skills, a keen understanding of people, and the ability to admit when he’s wrong.

Read Full Review of Still Life: A Chief Inspector...

Reader Rating for Still Life
80%

An aggregated and normalized score based on 1948 user ratings from iDreamBooks & iTunes


Rate this book!

Add Review

Reader reviews & activity

Mark Swaim-Fox

Mark Swaim-Fox 5 Sep 2013

Added the book to want to read list

×