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. Mary Dunbar says:

    Beginning each new book brings the feeling of coming home, and reuniting with old friends.

  2. Lesley Stewart says:

    Please never go ebooks only!! There’s nothing better than a book shelf filled with Louise Penny, Ann Cleeves and Alan Bradley. Even the smell of books makes me happy. The first post card is beautiful……thank you – I think I’ll move there in my head…x

  3. Stefanja Gardener. UK says:

    So glad you are doing these. An intrinsic part of Three Pines. I’m sitting in the car with Gamache experiencing the beauty through his eyes and thoughts.

  4. Don Rinker says:

    What a lovely 48th Wedding Anniversary gift. More visits with my friends in Three Pines. Thank you so much.

  5. Wendy Fertschneider says:

    I keep a photocopy of a page from Still Life in my planner. It describes how Jane’s dog Lucy comes to live with Peter and Clara. There are two paragraphs, the second one saying, “Lucy knew her God was dead. And she now knew the miracle wasn’t the banana, it was the hand that offered the banana.” I think it is the most exquisite prose I have ever read. It is what hooked me on Louise Penny’s writing.

  6. Nuala Vermeiren says:

    HOw evocative of all the seasons in Three Pines will be these cards.
    In a world we can go to when reality is ever with us. Louise is a messenger of hope, trust and always beauty, love and understanding.

  7. Carolyn Sniegowski says:

    My boss was always raving about Louise Penny and her Gamache books, so I happened to see The Way Home and was not impressed. However, about a year later my boss mentioned this again. So I read Still Life and was totally and unreservedly hooked! I have now completed all of them! Both of us are waiting not-so-patiently for the next one to come out in November. I can’t tell you how much I loved the books!

  8. Claudette L says:

    My favorite mystery series and characters. I will read everything your ever write!

  9. Susan Huston says:

    Thank you for your postcards Louise. It is like a little visit to a place well-loved. Each new book is a visit with long-time, dear friends.

  10. Bernadette DeMone says:

    How delightful to look at FB and find this. I would live there however whether it is the peaceful setting or the hidden passions or secrets, I am not sure.

  11. Kathy Gallagher says:

    I want to live in Three Pines! I’ve felt this way since my very first book and it’s just grown with every one.

  12. Erna K. Drechsler says:

    From the first paragraph I was captured and I went willingly. I await the next book waiting to hear of my friends in Three Pines.

  13. Naomi Taylor says:

    Once again, I am looking forward to leaving the heat of summer in South Carolina and spending time with friends in cool Three Pines. I have read all of the books and feel as if the characters are all old friends.

  14. Marian Head says:

    All the comments are so inspiring as is each book. I too plan to go back and read each one again. I have so enjoyed being a part of the audience watching Louise grow in her craft. She has taken each of us on her journey. For me I join in her grief having lost my husband a year ago. Louise, thank you for sharing your talent and your life with us.

  15. Evelyn Neilson says:

    I absolutely love these books. Thank you so much Louise for this series. I’m hooked. I’ve read Most of them. It’s been the best summer ever. I retired in June but was on holidays since middle of May. Reading your books on my swing has been the best present ever!! Still on my swing reading☺️ I pray the series keeps coming. Will be excited to get the new release in November
    Sincerely Evelyn.

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