Glass Houses – Louise Penny

Glass Houses is the 13th book in Chief Inspector Gamache series and the latest release. I have been reading / following this series since it was first published in 2005 (well! when you read 300 plus books a year, there are a lot of series to follow). It is based in Quebec, Canada and as obvious from the title, is a thriller novel series with murder, mystery, mayhem and beautiful poetry (unusual, i know)

Who hurt you, once,
so far beyond repair
that you would meet each overture
with curling lip?
While we, who knew you well,
your friends, (the focus of your scorn)
could see your courage in the face of fear,
your wit, and thoughtfulness,
and will remember you,
with something close to love. (Bury your dead)

As per me, the poem above symbolises the sensitivity and care with which each book is written. Glass Houses – i think tops all of it. It is so beautifully written, drawing the reader towards the ending the author is driving at, with suspense, conviction and interest.

Cobrador – the debt collector, first started in 1300’s is dressed in top hat and tails and he follows debtors. He is the central figure or the trigger to this entire book. Day after Halloween, cobrador appears in the Three Pines village, where Inspector Gamache resides. He makes the entire population of the village uncomfortable, just by implication of his presence. Presence leads to a murder, murder to an investigation, which in turn leads inspector and his band of loyal followers to discover the notorious drug cartel operating at a large scale under a shadow umbrella across Canada and America. It sounds pretty standard, but trust me – its anything but stale story. The beauty is in the writing, the book lies in between the lines that author has so well crafted.

It almost makes you wish, real life was as uncorrupt, challenging and loyal (for lack of better word – easy). As the author wrote in her acknowledgements – “Three Pines is a state of mind. When we choose tolerance over hate. Kindness over cruelty. Goodness over bullying. When we choose to be hopeful, not cynical. Then we live in Three Pines”

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