Postcards from Three Pines: A Fatal Grace

A Fatal Grace Postcard
“Nice and warm in the house, but bitter cold outside, Merde! Now I have to write a second one. Setting it at Christmas. Pond freezing over- love to go out and skate but typing away by the fire. Actually really nice.”

As people arrived food was taken to the familiar kitchen and too many casseroles and pies were stuffed into the oven. Bowls overflowing with candied ginger and chocolate-covered cherries and sugar-encrusted fruit sat on the sideboard beside puddings and cakes and cookies. Little Rose Lévesque stared up at the bûche de Noël, the traditional Christmas log, made of rich cake and coated with the thickest of icing, her tiny, chubby fingers curling over the tablecloth embroidered with Santa Claus and reindeer and Christmas trees. In the living room Ruth and Peter made drinks, Ruth pouring her Scotch into what Peter knew to be a vase.

The lights on the tree glowed and the Vachon children sat beside it reading the tags on the mountain of brightly wrapped presents, looking for theirs. The fire was lit, as were a few of the guests. In the dining room the gate-legged table was open full and groaning with casseroles and tortières, homemade molasses-baked beans and maple-cured ham. A turkey sat at the head of the table like a Victorian gentleman. The center of the table was saved every year for one of Myrna’s rich and vibrant flower arrangements. This year splays of Scotch pine surrounded a magnificent red amaryllis. Nestled into the pine forest was a music box softly
playing the Huron Christmas Carol and resting on a bed of mandarin oranges, cranberries and chocolates.

Olivier carried the whole poached salmon to the table. A punchwas made for the children, who, unsupervised, stuffed themselves with candy. Thus did Émilie Longpré hold her réveillon, the party that spanned Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, an old Québecois tradition, just as her mother and grandmère had done in this very same home on this very same night. Spotting Em turning in circles Clara wound her arm round the tiny waist.

Discussion on “Postcards from Three Pines: A Fatal Grace

  1. Elizabeth says:

    I love how we all enjoy the cozy feelings of warmth beside the fire, friendship, good food and conversation while discussing murders.

  2. anne says:

    These postcards are such a perfect extra. Thank you so much for sharing this peek into your life while writing!

  3. Juanita Giesbrecht says:

    The postcards inspire me to return and re-read everything! I have all your books and can hardly wait for the next one. The description in this postcard is so delicious! Thank-you.

  4. Sharon Lynn says:

    I loved singing the Huron Christmas Carol in grade school. I miss hearing it.

  5. Dena Hill says:

    Hi Louise,
    Were these postcards actually written by you at the time you were writing the specific mystery? And were the photos photos taken by you at that time also? If so, what a colourful way to ‘journal’ – or ‘bullet-journal’ – your personal setting!

    I love the way you capture the seasons and occasions of Quebec. You draw them with an artist’s eye that one even warms up to the idea of our blindingly bitter-cold Canadian winters! (The idea, mind you, never the reality of them)!

  6. Nicki says:

    I love your postcards. And I love that Michael’s photos are still on your site. I was happy that your dog is doing well. Good luck with your next book

  7. Ann Caldicott says:

    I have just found you. I am loving your books in the audio form whilst stitching or driving long distances. Thank you.

  8. Sue says:

    Loved this postcard from such a cool place on a hot sticky day in Ottawa. I want to visit Three Pines. Actually, I want to live there.

  9. Barbara Klaver says:

    Just reading this book right now! Special thrill – thank you.

  10. Thank you, dear Louise, for these postcards. I want to start reading Three Pines anew. You make me hungry, sad, happy, scared, loved and, always, always wanting more. Love you!

  11. Karyn Page says:

    Having discovered your beautiful stories in the past year , they quickly have become favorites. I have given the 1st book to several friends , spreading my love of your writing. These postcards are such a fun peek into the characters and you . Thank you!

  12. Louise, thank you for a lovely “dose” of Three Pines. Such a treat and I feel like I’m there.
    So wonderful to be able to see and hear you at the Washington DC Book Festival. A highlight of my life.

  13. Beulah Schwartzentruber says:

    Will the postcards ever be available to purchase? Love them!

  14. Paula says:

    Thank you for the postcard- have started dreaming of Christmas. And thank you for creating a safe hidden place and perfectly imperfect friends for us all to visit when the world becomes too harsh.

  15. Susan Boisvert says:

    I love Three Pines!

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