Fourth in the series and the best so far, possibly because it doesn't take place in claustrophobic Three Pines, but at a remote, claustrophobic resort on a lake during a Quebec summer. A dysfunctional, hateful family, resort folk with secrets, the affable Gamache, a tremendous thunderstorm and presto! a murder in paradise. Penny always portrays the darker aspects of peoples' characters, even "good" people, who (mostly) mask them and somehow manage to rise above them. Perhaps that what makes her books so readable despite the cloying village and its annoying inhabitants.

JLMason's rating:
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