Thursday, 31 August 2017

Glass Houses by Louise Penny - Blog Tour

I am delighted to be today's stop on the Blog Tour for Glass Houses by Louise Penny. Glass Houses was published by Sphere on 29 August 2017.

Glass Houses
By Louise Penny
Published by Sphere (29 August 2017)

Publisher's description
One cold November day, a mysterious figure appears on the village green in Three Pines, causing unease, alarm and confusion among everyone who sees it. Chief Superintendent, Armand Gamache knows something is seriously wrong, but all he can do is watch and wait, hoping his worst fears are not realised. But when the figure disappears and a dead body is discovered, it falls to Gamache to investigate.

In the early days of the murder inquiry, and months later, as the trial for the accused begins, Gamache must face the consequences of his decisions, and his actions, from which there is no going back . . .

My verdict
I haven't read a Louise Penny book before (dare I admit it), so wasn't sure what to expect, especially as this is number 13 in the Chief Inspector Gamache series. But I'm so glad that I picked this one up. It's easy to read as a standalone, although obviously I'm missing the back story of all of the main characters and will need to start at the beginning of the series to satisfy my inquisitive self.

Glass Houses is part courtroom drama (think John Grisham) and part murder mystery (think Agatha Christie). Set in a small fairly isolated village called Three Pines, this is a highly chilling book, involving the appearance of a mysterious figure who appears to be watching someone in the village? And then there's a murder. Who's the victim? Who's on trial? And why?

Glass Houses is a complex multi-layered plot with multi-character viewpoints and different timelines. The writing is brilliant and the story itself is gripping all the way through. It didn't matter that I hadn't been introduced to Gamache before.

I highly recommend Glass Houses as a standalone crime fiction novel, even though it's part of a series. This isn't just a simple 'whodunnit'. The varied but small cast of characters and atmospheric descriptions really made this literary crime fiction novel stand out from the crowd for me.

On a side note, as I was about to read this book I received an email from a distant cousin who lives in St Louis, Missouri, USA. I hadn't heard from her for a while. She said she had noticed I review crime fiction on my blog. Had I read any Louise Penny books as she's a huge fan? Life is full of coincidences.

I received an Advance Reader Copy from the publisher.

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