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Join us here in The Bistro for a discussion on the entire Gamache series. Feel free to ask or answer any questions about any of the books or the series as a whole.

Discussion on “The Bistro”

I am so sad for my adopted country. All the events on the news in the past months have almost inured us to such violence, and not allowed us to think of each other as individuals. I can see why and how, but it makes my heart sick. President Obama said in a speech that this is another in a long line of tragedies that shows how we need more stringent gun control. He said the same thing after Sandy Hook. I thought for sure, after that, there would be some movement. But no. Rhetoric is fine, and I know Mr. Obama needs to show the need, but he also needs to act. I know he cannot do it unilaterally, but he has made no move at all that I can see to push such a law through. “Guns don’t kill – people kill” is the mantra of those who would preserve the right to carry guns, and yet – I doubt very much if that boy hadn’t had a gun, he’d have done what he did. Multiple killings of people you don’t need to get very close to are a lot easier with a gun than without. For those who think that tougher gun control would make it hard for those who want to hunt, I say that there is only one animal you hunt with a hand gun. For those who think that then, only criminals will have guns – if all these poor, unbalanced children didn’t have guns, so many tragedies would have been averted. And for everyone who has had a child pick up a loaded gun and have it go off, killing either their child or someone else’s – clearly guns DO kill, sometimes. Nobody had murder in their heart in those cases. Still, a child is dead.

Okay – off my soapbox.

I think Barbara that it is easier to hate those you don’t know, easier to think them less than human. Lots of killers dehumanize those they slay. It was a terrible event. I saw it on the news here too.

I’m thoroughly into Bury Your Dead now… have just had Beauvoir arrive in Three Pines to investigate, even though he’s told them he is only here for a rest. I found the last few paragraphs of this chapter (4) interesting. As you know, Beauvoir is probably my favorite character, mostly because he is so flawed and complex. Remember that so far, he is sitting among the residents of Three Pines, in the Bistro, having just lied to them about his purpose of being here.

“So there Jean-Guy Beauvoir sat, trying to pretend he liked these people.

But he didn’t.

Jean-Guy Beauvoir didn’t like many people and these ones in Three Pines had given him little reason to change. They were cunning, deceitful, arrogant, and nearly incomprehensible, especially the Anglos. They were dangerous, because they hid their thoughts, hid their feelings, behind a smiling face. Who could tell what was really going on in their heads? They said one thing and thought another. Who knew what racid thing lived, curled up, in that space between words and thoughts?

Yes. These people might look kind and concerned. But they were dangerous.

The sooner this was over, though Beauvoir smiling at them over the rim of his beer, the better.”

I think this is so brilliant. I’d not noticed it the first couple of times I read it, but this perfectly describes Beauvoir, and the “thing” that is curled up inside him, getting ready to strike. I’m in awe of Louise’s power as a writer.

Ooops – all spelling mistakes are mine, not Louise’s. “Thought” not though, in the last sentence.

I found this passage thought provoking , when I read it, Julie. Sometimes when I am in a group, I look around at the various people. They are laughing and talking, appearing to be in accord one with the other. I wonder if their thoughts are malevolent and they are only acting.
Poor Beauvoir, carries the emotional scars of the prejudice he has known.
As I write this, the TV News is covering the story of the massacre in Charleston, SC. How can a person hate so much. I doubt he even knew any of those he killed.

It is a beautiful library, isn’t it? It’s just what I imagined, though not quite as “down-at-the-heels” as I thought.

The Lit and His library is perfect. Not what I’d imagined, though. I’d pictured it as being in a smaller building of its own – more like a house. And I didn’t imagine the lovely open ceiling to the second floor. But the rug, the couch, the chairs… exactly what I’d seen in my mind. I can picture Gamache in a chair with Henri at his feet. Bliss.

Hi to all! The Literary and Historical Society from BYD is featured today! As I have said it is my favorite place. Let’s see what you think. Meantime, I think I’ll have a seat and read a while, or maybe just sit and think. See you there.

Hello to all at the Bistro! Am sending good thoughts and prayers for peace and healing! I took a hike on a great bike trail in PA today and thought of you all as I passed a field filled with clover and honeysuckle! It was quite intoxicating! I half expected Chef Ve’ronique to come out in her beekeeping gear! I too am rereading TBT; gearing up for TNOTB! Joy and safety to all!

Good to see you all here again. Anna – so happy your Dad is home and happy. I’m sure it must be a lot of work for you, and worry, but wonderful that you can do this for him. I think it’s hilarious that you know Rita Moreno from a children’t show – I knew that lots of big stars did those muppet shows, but forgot that whole generations of people would have been introduced to such talent that way. Rita Moreno is a member of a very small club – people with an EGOT (Emmy – for either Sesame Street or Electric Company, Grammy, Oscar and Tony)

Barbara, I don’t envy you those southern summers! We are having warmer temperatures, but we don’t have the humidity with it (funny, isn’t it, as it’s so wet all the rest of the year – but we basically have a drought every summer). Hot and humid is enough to make a person crazy, I think.

I am feeling all better – maybe a little residual tiredness, but nothing like the fatigue I’d been having. Had a really nice day with girlfriends on Wednesday – stitching and laughing and visiting… those days are wonderful to have.

I’ve made online friends with a writer – she writes what everyone calls “fan fiction” in the Jane Austen vein – she reimagines the stories – if one or more details were different, and writes wonderful stories about the characters. I kind of fell in love with the stories, but in the online venue where they were being published, I could see that nobody was proof-reading her work, so I took a big breath and offered my services. I was worried she’d be insulted, but instead she jumped at the chance. She said she had someone who was proofing, but that they missed most things until after they appeared online, which of course, didn’t do her much good, haha. So I now do quite a bit of proof-reading for her. She has a self-published book coming out soon, and another in the pipeline, being debuted a chapter at a time online, and I am proofing both of those. Lots of fun, though I do feel quite a bit of responsibility now that I’ve put myself forth as someone competent to do this, hahaha. Hopefully, I’ll catch most – I’ve gotten a little used to her consistent errors now – people’s names are never spelled the same way twice, and a few words like “discreet” always spelled “discrete” which of course, is a word, but the wrong one, so auto-correct is no help. A cute meme I saw yesterday was “auto correct has become my number one enema.” At any rate, it’s quite interesting, and keeps me out of mischief.

In the meantime, my business partner and I have come up with a plan to sell the last of our books – we are going to put on a needlework seminar somewhere on the east coast, probably in the fall of 2016. So far, we’ve done nothing but make the decision – there’s lots to do and get organized, so will soon be up to our armpits in that! I feel like I am gaining back some energy to do all these things, and it feels pretty good!

Julie, Rita Moreno is a long time fav of mine. I don’t remember her from Sesame Street since we had no children and I didn’t see it too often.
You have volunteered for an interesting job. I’m sure someone with your needlework and making pattern books experience has a keen eye good for proofreading.
I love the “consistent errors”.
I’m glad you are getting some energy back……sounds like you have lots of projects.

Nancy, The Clef Argente is beautiful. I noticed the lovely tiles around the fireplaces. The house I grew up in had wonderful tiles around the living room fireplace. Many of the local Victorian houses have breath taking tiles fireplaces.
Our Anniversaries are family dinners. My sister gave us a grand celebration for our 25th, however.

How funny, I do know Rita Moreno but not her name. I looked her up and her face was familiar. She was on The Electric Company which I watched when I was a child and I so remember her performance on The Muppets. Such a great voice and a sassy personality! I see she is an amazing entertainer but how cute that I knew her from her children show performances!


Life has been a bit on the busy side for me and I suspect everyone. We bought dad home from hospital a week ago but he needs 24 hour care and supervision. He is loving being home though!

I finished The Brutal Telling and thought similar things. Lying had become such a habit for Olivier that he couldn’t stop. Strange though as it wasn’t evident in our previous encounters with him was it?

Gabri is wonderful and not bitter but just persistent in his belief. Yes, we should all have friends like Gabri. And Gamache. Despite everything he is prepared to right a wrong and reexamine his own case so that speaks absolute volumes.

I did really enjoy re reading TBT. I think I missed out on it the last time. It has so many links to the next few books.

How is everyone? Are you all better Julie? How is your mum Cathryne? Hope the recent storms haven’t caused anyone any trouble. I saw some massive tornados on the TV and the rain in Florida. You ok Barbara? Millie?

Hi, Anna, So glad your Dad came home. I have been wondering if he had been able to. I drop by the Bistro everyday but just hadn’t posted. temperatures We have been spared storms tat much of the country has had. Today is to start a week or more of temperatures in the high 90s which the high humidity makes more unpleasant.
I haven’t been able to find anything I can read for more than a few minutes without becoming bored.
Good thoughts to you and your Dad. I still miss mine so much.
We all need someone like Gabri in our lives. What a caring person.

Wow – very quiet here lately – it’s been a few days since any comments have been left.

When I finished The Brutal Telling, and knowing what I know about the next one – I’m still kind of amazed at Olivier – that he just kept lying – even after it became clear that Gamache et al knew so much of what had happened, and knew he was lying to them. And again, I’m so crazy about Gabri – he is such a sweet and loving man. His standing by Olivier no matter what speaks volumes… and his doggedness through the next book will as well. That we could all have a partner like Gabri!

Rats! I was excited to see that Louise was speaking here and was happily clicking over to the bookstore to get my reservation in and realized – the date overlaps with a trip I have and I won’t be here in town! So sad…. I was getting so excited! Ah well – since I can’t see her, I went over to Amazon and pre-ordered the book so I can begin reading at midnight on the 24th! (Okay, 12:01 a.m. on the 25th!)

I wondered if it was Rita Moreno! She’s a wonderful entertainer. So gracious. The only time I was at the Royal York was special for me. I was able to take my favorite Aunt out (she lived there – I lived in Winnipeg at the time) to see Mel Torme with George Shearing. Beautiful music and something you’d never be able to do now… it brings back lovely memories….

Now I remember ! It was Rita Moreno at the Royal York. She even invited people backstage after the show. She was very gracious.

I think it is lovely that you can celebrate even low key. I am not sure we have ever managed a celebration as such as we are rarely together on our anniversary! Maybe one day in the Eastern Townships!

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