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Synopsis

The brilliant new novel in the New York Times bestselling series by Louise Penny, one of the most acclaimed crime writers of our time
 
 
No outsiders are ever admitted to the monastery of Saint-Gilbert-Entre-les-Loups, hidden deep in the wilderness of Quebec, where two dozen cloistered monks live in peace and prayer. They grow vegetables, they tend chickens, they make chocolate. And they sing. Ironically, for a community that has taken a vow of silence, the monks have become world-famous for their glorious voices, raised in ancient chants whose effect on both singer and listener is so profound it is known as “the beautiful mystery.”
 
But when the renowned choir director is murdered, the lock on the monastery’s massive wooden door is drawn back to admit Chief Inspector Armand Gamache and Jean-Guy Beauvoir of the Sûreté du Québec. There they discover disquiet beneath the silence, discord in the apparent harmony. One of the brothers, in this life of  prayer and contemplation, has been contemplating murder. As the peace of the monastery crumbles, Gamache is forced to confront some of his own demons, as well as those roaming the remote corridors. Before finding the killer, before restoring peace, the Chief must first consider the divine, the human, and the cracks in between.
 
The Beautiful Mystery is the winner of the 2012 Agatha Award for best novel, the 2013 Anthony Award for best novel and the 2013 Macavity Award for best novel.

Book Reviews

The Beautiful Mystery
Average rating
4.4 / 5
The Beautiful Mystery
February 1st, 2015
The story was well written, the descriptions of the abbey, the forests were beautiful. The story was captivating, I needed to know who did it! A great read.
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1 review
1 person found this helpful
Praying for more?
January 11th, 2015
What do you get when you mix a police investigation, a drug addiction, a festering and growing hatred with religion? You get yet another masterpiece from Louise Penny....A Must Read!
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1 review
Change of Scene
October 31st, 2014
This book takes place entirely in a monastery in remote northern Canada. It involves the murder of the prior in a religious community both small and talented in gregorian chant. It is also the story of how leadership in the Surete try to pit Gamache against Beauvoir.
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1 review
"Holy" Gamache!
August 9th, 2014
While I missed Three Pines and the assorted villagers, this was an interesting, intriguing read.
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1 review
Gamache novel great
June 6th, 2014
Such a lovely title and more importantly a great read! I love reading the inspector Gamache novels. I'm looking forward to the next one
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1 review
The Beautiful Mystery
April 20th, 2014
Excellent as usual, I can sense a climax but I dont want the series to end ! Please Louise keep writing !
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1 review
A Beautiful Mystery
November 9th, 2013
A secluded monetary, home to an order of monks renowned for their recording of Gregorian Chants, has its peace disrupted when the prior is found murdered. Chief Inspector Gamache finds an unholy mess on hands upon his arrival and struggles to find his killer among these devout men.
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1 review
October 4th, 2013
This is a terrific read -- one of the best in the Gamache series.
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1 review
October 4th, 2013
I loved this book - it feels like Inspector Gamache is like a priest, talking to the monks and the leaders to figure out who could have done this crime. So few books mention a sanctuary - finding space and quiet there and discerning who is doing what in a community of faith - always a challenge
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1 review
October 4th, 2013
I found this to be an intriguing mystery. I was troubled by the actions of Gamache's young protégé Jean Guy and anxious to learn more,. Penny is a brilliant writer, exploring the depths of the human soul.
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1 review
October 4th, 2013
Louise Penny chose an unique setting filled with mystery for her story. Her very human characters create exquisite tension throughout the murder investigation. Dilemna was I could not put it down but I did not want it to end.
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1 review
October 4th, 2013
This is another great novel by Louise Penny. Shem makes characters come alive and the description of the background of Quebec is wonderful. You can smell those croissants. The story keeps at a steady pace and there is always a little twist that you weren't expecting. Have enjoyed all of her novels.
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1 review
October 4th, 2013
One of Penny's best in this series. Fascinating glimpse into a monastery of cloistered monks. Anyone who loves ancient music will also love this book. A great read!
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1 review
October 4th, 2013
This was a great book. The way that Penny develops her characters really makes them come alive.
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1 review
October 4th, 2013
Another fantastic novel from Louise Penny. I have read all her books and usually can't figure out who committed the crime until the very end. Ms. Penny has the ability to make the reader feel as if part of the setting.This particular novel ends with a twist, that MUST be followed up in the next installment
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1 review
October 4th, 2013
This is not only an intriguing mystery but is also a literary masterpiece. Louise Penny excels in creating interesting and believable characters who are as intriguing as the story line. Her books are about real people and this is one of her best. Hard to put down!
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1 review
September 30th, 2013
This was my first novel of Louise Penny I read. I loved it!
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1 review
September 30th, 2013
This is the first book I read of Louise Penny's and throughout it I was intrigued by Gamache and Jean-Guy's interactions and personalities. I'm in awe of how Louise Penny's choice of a cloistered monastery to set this mystery in. At the start, I didn't think there'd be enough there as exposition of the crime; but she surprised me and caught my attention with exploring Gregorian chant and the history of how musical notes came into being. What a read! I liked it so much I'm intent on reading all her other novels.She hasn't disappointed me in any of them.
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1 review
September 14th, 2013
Excellent story telling with unforgettable characters. Louise Penny brings to life Inspector Gamache with all his humanity and foibles and takes the reader into the tale. The monastery, the monks and rural Quebec become real as we walk with the Inspector and his colleague Jean-Guy to unravel the mystery and murder that haunts Saint-Gilbert-Entre-les-Loups.
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1 review
Another triumph by Louise Penny
April 9th, 2013
Penny tackles a difficult subject - faith in God and faith in another human being. Woven together with the glory and intrigue of Gregorian chant sung by the monks of the monastery hidden in the inaccessible forests of Quebec, this story of the murdered prior reaches back into centuries of Church history when notated music had its beginning. It takes us on a journey that plunges down into the dark and tragic depths of the human soul and soars up into the heights of spiritual ecstasy. Penny gives us a glimpse into the ordered world of twenty-four monks devoted to their music as much as to their God, reminiscent of a murder mystery which took place in a medieval monastery in Italy devoted to manuscript illumination in the book "The Name of the Rose" by Umberto Eco. Chief Inspector Gamache patiently reveals to us the hidden desires of the monks as he and Jean-Guy discover the secrets of the beautiful mystery held within the walls of the monastery for centuries. He never fails us and neither does Penny. Thank you for another wonderful story!
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1 review
So much more than a mystery!!
March 28th, 2013
Penny continues her excellent series with a yet even deeper look into love and addiction. Wonderful character development. Graceful, rich prose... A beautiful mystery... A stunning work... Bravo!!
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1 review

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