Discussion: “The Beautiful Mystery” by Louise Penny

Friday morning at 11am Louise Penny, author of the award-winning Quebec mystery series featuring inspector Armand Gamache and the idyllic town of Three Pines, will be joining us on for a conversation. Like all the previous books in the series, the latest, Beautiful Mystery, is on bestseller lists across North America. It’s also been nominated for CBC Radio’s Canada Reads series. Join the conversation with Jackie Sauter, Betsy Kepes, and author Louise Penny on North Country Public Radio.

Have you read The Beautiful Mystery or other Inspector Gamache books? Help build the discussion in a comment below.


  1. Vivian Sallie says:

    I live in Indiana and discovered Louise Penney through an article in O Magazine a few months ago. I have now read all of her books and enjoyed every one of them. Bury Your Dead and A Beautiful Mystery are my favorites. I have enthusiastically recommended her books to friends and my local book club members. I hope she will continue to keep the magic and high quality of her stories as she writes future books. Many good writers lose their magic to tell a good story after they earn success.

  2. I’ve read and adore them all. There is “a quality” to them, a tone, a light if you will; they gleam from within, as do the enchanting characters. No matter the twists of plot into shadow or sun they leave you feeling nourished. Sustained. Penny is so delicate and tender in her word choices, her scenarios, leading you into a world that is oh-so-familiar but far more intimate than even your own. I grew up in northern New York & spent much of my childhood on provincial dirt roads in Ontario and western Quebec, I now live “elsewhere” and the books transport me back home in the geography of my heart and the fiction of Three Pines. Bravo to one of the best series there ever were. In my top 5 for life. Thank you Louise for sharing your vision with us.

  3. Oh yes, Jackie, I’ve read them all. I think the last one I read is the best until I read the next one. I love the Canadian/French connection.
    I do enjoy some mysteries, mostly those written by writers from ‘cold’ or ‘bleak’ countries: Alaska, Iceland, Norway and Sweeden: authors such as Ake Edwardson, Arnaldur Indridason, Hakan Nesser, Karin Alvtegen, Karin Fossum, Asa Larson as well as Chinese mystery writer, Qiu Xialong and Japanese writer, Keigo Higashino. Also really enjoy reading Canadian writer Kate Atkinson’s “Start Early, Took My Dog” and “Case Histories.” And, I’m intrigued by Minnette Walters writings and am hooked on Jonathan Kellerman. Of course, there are crossovers such as Walter Mosley and Adirondack writer, Russell Banks that are always good for an interesting, if not exactly in the ‘mystery’ genre read. I must admit I read every book written by Colorado writer, Diane Mott-Davidson, not for the writing or the mystery but for the nostalgia invoked by her stories set in s I exlocations I experienced while living in Colorado. And so it goes…

  4. Jackie Sauter says:

    Jackie here, getting the conversation started…have you read the Gamache books? I’ve read and loved them all. I think my favorite is Bury Your Dead, because of the Quebec City winter setting and all I learned about Champlain. But the latest, The Beautiful Mystery, is terrific. How about you? Have a favorite? And while we’re on the subject, if you’re a reader of mysteries, why?

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