Gamache Goes Abroad – The Beautiful Mystery

We find ourselves back in Sweden this week with the cover of The Beautiful Mystery. Of the many foreign covers we’ve explored so far, the Swedish edition is the closest we’ve seen to almost matching ours. In previous posts, we’ve talked about the use of light as a powerful symbol, but these two covers put that idea in the forefront. 

In The Beautiful Mystery, Chief Inspector Gamache travels to the monastery of Saint-Gilbert-Entre-les-Loups, to investigate the death of a renowned choir director. Tucked into the wilderness, the monastery is a beacon of peace and reflection in the dark woods. The light shining through the trees on both jackets might also symbolize the illumination and discovery resulting from Gamache’s investigation. 

Does the Agatha and Anthony Award callout on the top of the Swedish jacket bring a movie poster to mind? What actor would you pick to play Gamache? 

For more information on the real place that inspired the monastery in The Beautiful Mystery, click here. 

Discussion on “Gamache Goes Abroad – The Beautiful Mystery

  1. Michele H. says:

    The Beautiful Mystery is my favorite, both for locale and it’s unusual plot.
    Both covers with the light shining through the trees invoke the biblical context that light and truth can permeate darkness and fear.
    In this instance, although it’s difficult, I’ll stay with the US jacket cover.

    • Beth says:

      It confuses me as to why the covers are different in each country. The story is the same and the author is the same!

  2. Darlene Mantione says:

    U.S/Canada jacket cover. It is beautiful as is this book. My favourite. The colors evoke the peace of the monastery

  3. Jo Zapatka says:

    It is difficult for me to decide which is best. Both convey the same thing – momentary peace and sanctuary.

  4. Milli Greene says:

    I like both of them. the Swedish one evokes evil to me where the other peace.

  5. Mary Dodge Bovaird says:

    I really like the Swedish cover. It represents the title well combing beauty and mysteriousness.

  6. Diane Brokenshire says:

    Both are beautiful. The Canadian/US one has a warmer feel for me while the Swedish cover is somewhat more sinister. Both work to foreshadow elements contained within the book. Mystery and hope.

  7. Dorian Bennett says:

    I pick the US version. It seems to portray a light from heaven whereas the Swedish version is more of an earthly light (sunrise or sunset)

  8. Maureen Miller says:

    The Beautiful Mystery was riveting and calming throughout. Good I had the next book on hand because I just couldn’t wait…. Oh, the angst! In ref. to book covers, I love the US version because of the light and the differing beautiful shades of a healthy green nature. There have been many discussions about who should play Gamache. I’m in the ballpark that brings Daniel Day Lewis out of retirement with some quarantine weight that many of us has enjoyed. Daniel can do anything, with any accent, strength, humor and kindness. Louise, I recommend that you make that happen and put yourself in the series to play Reine Marie. Not too shabby working with DDL, eh? Thx for the opportunity to be a little silly. ☮️

  9. Alice Briggs says:

    These 2 covers offer a similar idea, but I prefer the colors on the US/Canada cover.
    To me, this was the saddest book in the series with Jean-Guy’s-downward spiral.

  10. Pat says:

    One of my favorite books with Jean Guys struggle. I’m picking the Swedish cover. I am almost seeing a structure…developing from the tree trunks..And a little spark of something amidst. It’s sort of mysterious. We visited the Abbey, so beautiful.
    ( I agree Louise should play Reine Marie. )

  11. Lesley J says:

    I prefer the domestic cover for the gentle natural light coming from above, whereas the Swedish cover has harsh light coming at eye level – could be a train coming at you!
    As for an actor to play Gamache, for your consideration: Stanley Tucci, who exudes intelligence, humour, and has very kind eyes. I bet he could manage both an English accent and a creditable French. He’s very fit, but might be willing to put on a few pounds for the role. ;o)

  12. Linda says:

    This time my choice is the green cover for reasons that have nothing to do with the book. I prefer the letter font and distribution of the letters in the English-language version. Yes, the symbol on the top of the Swedish cover evokes film industry awards. Yes, the image is interesting. But the whole is a bit “stodgy” and inharmonious from where I stand right now. Neither vibrant nor very mysterious, though it does make one uneasy. PS, in some ways this is my favorite Gamache story. For about a thousand different reasons.

  13. Rolene says:

    My favorite Gamache also. While reading this the first time, purchased Gregorian Chant music that I play every Sunday since, along with coffee in Three Pines mug.

  14. Millie says:

    Beautiful Mystery was the first of the Gamach series that I was introduced to. I was hooked . I have read them all and reread several. I love the series . I look forward to reading about the charecters growth and have found them company in times like these when we are at home and keeping distanced from friends and family.

  15. Margaret says:

    I see that most people seem to prefer the Canadian cover to the Swedish one, but in this case I have absolutely no hesitation in saying that the Swedish cover wins hands down. So mysterious, and it draws me in while giving me the shivers. Just like your wonderful book, Louise.

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