A Trick of the Light

Louise Penny. Minotaur, $25.99 (352p) ISBN 978-0-312-65545-7
In Penny's outstanding seventh Chief Inspector Gamache novel, Gamache and his loyal deputy in Québec's Sûreté, Insp. Jean Guy Beauvoir, are still coming to terms with the multiple physical and emotional traumas they suffered in the previous book, Bury Your Dead. These tribulations have already cost Beauvoir his marriage. Meanwhile, the day after the triumphant opening of a show of their friend Clara Morrow's paintings at Montréal's Musée d'Art Contemporain, a dead woman with a broken neck turns up in Clara's garden in the small town of Three Pines. Gamache and his team return to this outwardly idyllic community once again to ascertain whether one of its residents is a murderer. With her usual subtle touch and timely injections of humor, Penny effectively employs the recurring motif of the chiaroscuro, the interplay of light and dark, which distinguishes Morrow's artwork and which resonates symbolically in the souls of the author's characters. 100,000 first printing; author tour. (Sept.)
Reviewed on: 07/04/2011
Release date: 08/01/2011
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