Postcards from Three Pines: Still Life

Still Life Postcard
“Here in Quebec. Finally started writing. I think I’ll call it STILL LIFE. What do you think? Struggling a bit with fear but inspired by the fall colours. ”

Three Pines wasn’t on any tourist map, being too far off any main or even secondary road. Like Narnia, it was generally found unexpectedly and with a degree of surprise that such an elderly village should have been hiding in this valley all along. Anyone fortunate enough to find it once usually found their way back. And Thanksgiving, in early October, was the perfect time. The weather was usually crisp and clear, the summer scents of old garden roses and phlox were replaced by musky autumn leaves, woodsmoke and roast turkey.

Three huge pine trees faced [Gamache] at the far end of the green. Between him and them was a pond, a bunch of sweater-clad children circling it, hunting for frogs, he supposed. The village green sat, not surprisingly, in the center of the village, a road called The Commons circling it with homes, except behind him, which seemed to be the commercial district. It was a very short commercial. It consisted, as far as Gamache could see, of a depanneur whose Pepsi sign read ‘Beliveau’. Beside that was a boulangerie, the Bistro and a bookstore. Four roads led off The Commons, like the spokes of a wheel, or the directions of a compass.

As he sat quietly and let the village happen around him he was impressed by how beautiful it was, these old homes facing the green, with their mature perennial gardens and trees. By how natural everything looked, undesigned. And the pall of grief that settled on this little community was worn with dignity and sadness and a certain familiarity. This village was old, and you don’t get to be old without knowing grief. And loss.

Discussion on “Postcards from Three Pines: Still Life

  1. Kathy Wait says:

    From the first book to the last I found myself becoming great friends with the people of Three Pines. I have felt their joys and sadness and reveled in their friendships. I think I belong at The Bistro with them having coffee in the afternoon! I would work at the bookstore for free and happily watch the scene.

  2. Aileen Dobbins says:

    What a wonderful setting for your books. The stories have so easily catch your imagination, I can’t put them down. It would be wonderful to stay at the B+B and eat at the Bistro!

  3. Joey says:

    Presently,I am reading the 11th book in the Gamache series. Love the characters and the village.I make myself read a different book between the series books so i can stretch out the experience. I dont want it to end.

  4. arline kennedy says:

    Your fantastic, lyrical writing has enriched my life. Your writing , for me, evokes the same complexity of emotion as the music of Joan Baez.

  5. Cathy Harris says:

    “Bury Your Dead” was the inspiration for us to spend our 50th Anniversary in old town of Quebec City. We went everywhere we could mentioned in the book and loved the entire week!!! Love each book and feel the characters are like my secret family!!

  6. paddle, connie says:

    My very favourite books and my very favourite place. Would love to visit or even live in Three Pines. The crime rate does not bother me as not all murders take place there, they just have a connection. Keep writing and I’ll keep reading and wishing I were there. I think I will go back and read them all from the start.

  7. NancyNelson says:

    I believe that since I didn’t get to go to Hogwarts for school, I ought to be able to retire in Three Pines! I think this description of autumn in Still Life is what got me thinking that way.

  8. Leslie says:

    I love the phrase Gamache “let the village happen around him”. Exactly!!

  9. charlotte wbeater says:

    the descriptions of three pines are so warm and gentle. i would love to move there.

  10. Christine Hadley says:

    I don’t remember how I found these books, but I am forever grateful that I did. Ah, to have friends like these and live in such beauty. As always, I am surprised by joy.

  11. Ann Zeigler says:

    What a treat. Thank you! Each postcard will be a treasure.

  12. Dawn says:

    I remember reading Still Life and I couldn’t put it down. At the end of the book, I just said ‘ahhh.’ I read a LOT. I had found a new favorite writer. I anxiously await each new book.

  13. Valerie says:

    I’ve retired and moved to a place that may very well be Three Pines. I feel so fortunate to be here and am looking forward to rereading all the books this winter. Am looking forward to the next novel.

  14. Brenda says:

    I would love to live in Three Pines!

  15. Patty Brammell says:

    I adore this! What a wonderful venue for Louise’s fans to share their love and appreciation for Three Pines, her wonderful characters, and all the other magical places she’s taken us!

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