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With everything on the line, can the three friends find a way to stop the events unfolding, or will their failure result in the destruction of everything they hold dear? Indeed, the author already has plans for a sequel, and The Gutter Prayer will form part of this planned Black Iron Legacy series.

I thought that The Gutter Prayer was an ambitious and intriguing new entry to the fantasy genre, and it is definitely worthy of the hype around it. Hanrahan presents a wide-ranging and dark story of magic, religion and betrayal, and he sets it within an imaginative new fantasy landscape with a ton of unique fantasy elements and creatures. The story is then based around several great characters, each of whom has their own compelling arc within the narrative.

This book contained a fantastic and intense story which focused on a variety of different characters and follows their attempts to investigate and forestall the strange events occurring around them. I really enjoyed this story, although I had a little bit of a hard time getting into it at the start of the book due to mass of story and fantasy elements I was bombarded with.

One of the main things that I really loved about this book was the inclusion of a significant number of different characters and factions, each with their own motivations and hidden secrets. As a result, you have no idea who is going to do what next and who is going to betray the protagonists to serve their own needs, creating an unpredictable story.

The narrative is also extremely dark, and readers should be prepared for characters dying or being altered in some way or another. This is some fantastic storytelling from Hanrahan, and an overall clever narrative. Hanrahan has come up with and expertly utilised a ton of creative, inventive and at times just plain creepy new fantasy elements. The best example of this has to be the Tallowmen, humans that have been turned into living candles, often as punishment for crimes. These creatures are strong, lethal and fast, serving as the guards and law enforcers of the Alchemist Guild.

Their terrifying appearance, distinctive abilities and the glow of their candle flames as they hunt down the protagonists are extremely memorable. There are also the ghouls and Stone Men. Stone Men are humans infected with a disease that slowly turns them into stone, although their condition can be held back by an alchemical compound. The depictions of their condition are pretty horrific, and there is the interesting double-edged sword of the disease: they become stronger the more their condition progresses, but they also become less able to live normal lives.

Another awesome creation is the Crawling Ones, a sentient hive of worms who take a human shape and are powerful magic users. The world of the Dark Iron Legacy is filled with a vast pantheon of powerful gods, which forms a critical part of this universe. Many of the deities outside of the city are engaged in a massive conflict known as the Godswar, where these gods and their followers are involved in battles against each other for supremacy. While we get a brief look at this in The Gutter Prayer , most of the focus of this book is on the gods of Guerdon.

While a few other religions are mentioned within the city, the main two pantheons are the Kept Gods and the Black Iron Gods. Both of these different gods are extremely intriguing, and I particularly loved the concept of the Kept Gods, who are chained and whose intake of prayer is controlled by their church to limit their power and control their actions.

The Black Iron Gods are a darker and more ancient pantheon with a great history, a horde of sinister followers and a captivating physical presence. There are a couple of saints featured throughout the book who form an integral part of the plot, powering through the story with a range of different powers and abilities.

Quite frankly, all of these unique fantasy elements are deeply intriguing, and Hanrahan uses all of them perfectly to enhance his outstanding story. I do hope that the Godswar will be explored in future books, as that sounded like a really fun concept that I would be deeply interested in. Guerdon is a decent grimdark fantasy city, and it serves as the primary setting for most of the city. This is a pretty typical dark, crime-ridden fantasy city, but it works really well as a setting for this story. The author introduces a number of amazing characters, most of whom get deep and satisfying story arcs.

The main three characters are particularly great. Rat the ghoul is another interesting character. As a ghoul, he is generally supposed to live under the city, but he likes living above the streets with his friends. Finally, there is the mysterious young thief, Cari, who holds a dark secret in her past. Cari is a rebellious young female protagonist who is developing strange new powers. The exploration of her past and her abilities is a key part of the book and a good basis for a large portion of this plot.

I liked the way that these three characters cared for each other and how their stories remain interconnected even as they have their own unique adventures within the story. Each of them also has a full character arc within the book, and they all develop or change in substantial ways. Jere is a grizzled private investigator obsessed with taking down the Brotherhood, and his investigations for the first two-thirds of the book provide the reader with some vital plot detail. Eladora is a sheltered scholar who gets a rather rude awakening about life throughout the course of this book.

Eladora is not my favourite character, but I did like her gradual transformation from damsel in distress to something more useful. Finally, there is Arla, who would have to be my favourite side character. Arla is a saint of the Kept Gods blessed with fiery powers as a result. Arla is a badass and entertaining character who spends most of the book fighting her opponents with her fiery sword and generally not acting in a way most people would consider saint-like. I especially love when she utilises her god-empowered voice to command people, as she is usually swearing while doing this.

There were a number of other entertaining side or minor characters throughout the book that the author put to good use, and I will enjoy seeing what role they will play in any future books in the series. This was an excellent piece of grimdark fantasy which expertly combined some very inventive fantasy elements together with a fantastic story and some excellent characters.

With this first book Hanrahan has shown some incredible talent as a fantasy storyteller whose outstanding imagination is his biggest asset. This is a highly recommended book which lives up to the substantial hype surrounding it. I am already extremely keen for any additional books in the Black Iron Legacy , especially as the interview at the end of the book implies that Hanrahan has some brilliant ideas for the rest of the series.

In the resultant chaos, huge swathes of the population simply floated away into the atmosphere. Those that remained were forced to adjust to a new world with different rules. Twenty years later, humanity has adapted to its new low-gravity reality. Living with her father, Nathan, a brilliant scientist traumatised by the events that sent his wife tumbling into the skies, Willa scrapes a living as a high-speed delivery girl with a number of risky and dangerous tricks up her sleeve.

Instead he is determined to keep gravity from returning, and will go to extreme lengths to stop Willa and her father. This is one of the first comic book works from Henderson, whose main claim to fame is as showrunner for the Lucifer television show. The artist, Garbett, is probably best known for his work on the comic Loki: Agent of Asgard. Together, this new team has created an incredible new comic book series that has already been picked up by Sony for a potential feature film, and it will be intriguing to see how this challenging and creative series will be adapted to the screen.

This first volume contains issues of this new series. Skyward contains an excellent story that examines life in a different and catastrophically affected version of Earth while also presenting an action-packed adventure with a wild protagonist. The central idea of this series, the removal of gravity, is a crazy concept that allows for an exceptional overall package that combines great storytelling with incredible and unique artwork. Throughout this first volume, there is a great combination of humour, action, character development and powerful emotional moments, all set within a fascinating new world shown in great artistic detail.

It was quite intriguing to see the various ways in which a lack of gravity could affect the world that we live in. Henderson and Garbett have come up with a range of different ways for the characters in this book to navigate around the skyline, and it is interesting to see the range of tools that are shown in the artwork. The creative team has done an amazing job highlighting the various ways that the lack of gravity has affected the world, from food production to water gathering to human mobility.

One of the more intriguing aspects of the new world is the way in which guns have become obsolete due to the recoil pushing shooters back through the air, making it an ineffective weapon and more dangerous to the user than the target. That said, the protagonist, Willa, has some more extreme and effective uses for the gun she carries around with her. This includes wearing grav-boots to keep them stuck to the ground and forcing a man with no legs to sit in a wheelchair rather than floating in the air as he would prefer. There are also some crazy inventions, like a magnetised hem to keep a dress from rising up.

One funny scene involves Willa traumatising an obnoxious bouncer by wrecking his grav-boots and making him float up into the sky a little. Overall, this is a fun new world to set this great story in and has a lot of potential for future volumes of this series, where additional changes to day-to-day life are no doubt going to be revealed. The artwork in Skyward is just gorgeous and is definitely a key highlight of this incredible book. The creative team have done an outstanding job showing off the low-gravity concept in art form, creating some fantastic scenes and drawings.

Most of the characters are shown floating around and navigating the air, which creates some amazing panoramas of the city from high above for the reader to enjoy. All the characters, even those rich individuals trying to ignore the lack of gravity, are shown with their hair floating up in the sky, and multiple scenes have various liquids floating in the air around the characters attempting to have drinks. It also means that fight scenes are constantly surrounded by droplets of blood that float around the characters and add a whole new sense of realism and brutality to the story.

The artistic highlight of this book has to be the incredible and exceptional drawings of the storm in low gravity that becomes such a massive part of the background in the later part of the volume. Due to the effects of the low gravity, the storm manifests itself as a gigantic ball of water in the sky, surrounding several high-rise buildings. The first drawing of this is amazing, and the following scenes which show the main characters navigating around this bubble and creating massive pockets of air are just fantastic, and represent some exceptional comic book art.

I was also suitably terrified by several of the drawings in this volume, from the opening scenes which show multiple people being lifted away by the low gravity, to the horrifying shot of the planet Earth and its new artificial ring, made up of planes, cars, ships, other debris and of course multiple dead animals and humans that have not decayed in their 20 years in orbit.

Lee Garbett and the creative team have outdone themselves in Skyward and I cannot speak highly enough of the artwork in this book. The main character, Willa, is an excellent protagonist for this series. The constant incredulity of the other characters as she does these things is very amusing and makes it quite clear that these actions are not the social norm in the new world. At a cabin in the woods apparently belonging to the dead man, Gamache and his team are shocked to discover the remote building is full of priceless antiquities, from first edition books to European treasures thought to have disappeared during WWII.

Readers keen for another glimpse into the life of Three Pines will be well rewarded. Joseph Beth bookstores , Cincinnati, Ohio, Micheal Fraser I was prepared to be vastly entertained by a witty, sometimes funny and intricately plotted mystery whose solution always lies in the hearts of men and the ability of Gamache to suss out what lies within. I was not prepared for this compelling and unflinching look into the heart of darkness that resides within us all.

It is a universal truth that we can never fully know another human being and many times, not even ourselves. In a brutal telling itself, Penny connects us with our own humanity as well as others. She shows us the fragility of our existence and that even living within the pale doesn't exempt us and we can have everything taken away in a very short time.

Plus an astonishing ending! Who could ask for anything more? With almost every word, she gives you something to hope for I'm shouting about it all over the place, and I'm already quite sure it will be in my Top Five Favorite Books of Add this to your "Gotta Read" list. Wealthy, cultured and respectable, the Finney family is the epitome of gentility. When Irene Finney and her four grown-up children arrive at the Manoir Bellechasse in the heat of summer, the hotel's staff spring into action. For the children have come to this idyllic lakeside retreat for a special occasion - a memorial has been organised to pay tribute to their late father.

But as the heat wave gathers strength, it is not just the statue of an old man that is unveiled. Old secrets and bitter rivalries begin to surface, and the morning after the ceremony, a body is found. The family has another member to mourn. A guest at the hotel, Chief Inspector Armand Gamache suddenly finds himself in the middle of a murder enquiry. The hotel is full of possible suspects - even the Manoir's staff have something to hide, and it's clear that the victim had many enemies.

With its remote location, the lodge is a place where visitors come to escape their pasts.

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Until the past catches up with them Not only does the auberge offer grand views and the order and calm of old-world service, but it also observes a no-kill policy, with the proprietors feeding wild animals in winter and forbidding guests to hunt or fish. Someone obviously failed to explain that rule to the cultured but quarrelsome family holding a reunion to unveil a statue of their late patriarch, who makes his feelings felt by toppling down on one of his own.

As Gamache observes, things were not as they seemed, not even in a paradise like Bellechasse. And never in a Louise Penny mystery. Blackstone, unabridged, nine CDs, 11 hrs. Celebrated British narrator and actor Ralph Cosham brings this wonderful murder mystery to life and draws in listeners with his charisma. Penny's taut, darkly comedic tale features the Finney family, which has gathered for the installation of a statue of their long-dead patriarch.

When the statue falls and kills one of his daughters, Insp. Armand Gamache Cosham at his very best must unravel the plot before it's too late. Cosham's characters are refreshingly original and never overplayed, and the Old World quality of his voice invokes radio murder mysteries from decades past, creating an endlessly entertaining listening experience.

Australian Women's Weekly Beautiful imagery, deft characterisation and deliciously dense plots Weekend Australian Louise Penny's village whodunits make perfect beach reading for this summer. Notebook Magazine To say this book has an old-fashioned feel is not to denigrate it. There is nothing hard-boiled about Armand: he's a man who loves his family, is loyal and decent Richmond Times-Dispatch Once again, Penny concocts an intricate and intriguing plot and peoples it with credible characters and the continually fascinating Gamache No murder would be complete, of course, without death.

Denver Post An ingenious, impossible crime puzzle for the reader. An IndieNext pick formerly BookSense for February 09 Mystery Reader five out of five stars Louise Penny has created in her Inspector Gamache series a clever combination of a police procedural and cozy mystery novel.


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The setting itself is reminiscent of the golden age of mysteries. Indeed this novel is a classic locked room mystery. Penny has a superb command of the English language.

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As a mystery author, Ms. Penny plays fair with her readers. The Charlotte Observer 4 out of 4 stars At least two people are waiting very impatiently for this review to be done so I can pass the new Louise Penny along to them. With just her fourth book, she already has that kind of well-deserved following Starred Library Journal Canadian author Penny has garnered numerous awards for her elegant literary mysteries featuring the urbane Armand Gamache, chief police inspector from Quebec.

Gamache is intelligent, observant, and implacable, indispensible attributes for the sophisticated detection that characterizes this series Her psychological acumen, excellent prose, and ingenious plotting make this essential reading for mystery lovers and admirers of superb literary fiction.

Fans of Dorothy L. Sayers, P.

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James, and Elizabeth George will also be delighted. One of the best traditional mystery series currently being published. Publishers Weekly Murder interrupts Chief Insp. It's a serious novel that bridges the gap between the mystery genre and mainstream fiction Louise Penny's fourth novel is an enduring mystery that begins and ends with the qualities that make great fiction writing -- compelling storytelling, evocative descriptions that are the heart of the story -- and characters the novel's soul who are rich in qualities and foibles that make them unforgettable -- and capable of murder.

Time Out London. Montreal Review of Books The plotting is flawless and when the murderer is finally revealed in a thrilling climactic scene Penny has found her perfect formula with the carefully constructed puzzle plot in the perfect village with the classic cast of characters. The fact that it's modern Quebec is the icing on the petit four Once the puzzle is set up, it's impossible to put this book down until it's solved. Devotees of Christie will be delighted by Penny's clever plots and deft characters.

The Irish News In a traditional who-dunnit crime thriller that rivals Agatha Christie's Poirot, Gamache is a refreshing alternative to the hard-nosed stereotypical detective. Penny builds the lives and imperfections of the characters effectively, exposing the complexity of human nature, challenging the reader's opinion and creating a constant sense of suspicion.

This is a classic tale that proves that revenge is a dish best served ice cold. You have to read it The temptation is to scarf Penny's books like potato chips but it's ever wise to savor each bite and let the flavors fill your tongue. Easter in Three Pines is a time of church services, egg hunts and seances to raise the dead. A group of friends trudges up to the Old Hadley House, the horror on the hill, to finally rid it of the evil spirits that have so obviously plagued it, and the village, for decades.

One of their numbers dies of fright. As they peel back the layers of flilth and artiface that have covered the haunted old home, they discover the evil isn't confined there. Some evil is guiding the actions of one of the seemingly kindly villagers.

How To Pass From Curse to Blessing by Derek Prince complete

A very personal demon is about to strike. A time of rebirth, when nature comes alive. And it become clear - for there to be a rebirth, there first must be a death. The mouthwatering food, the beautiful gardens, the quirky and literate villagers -- Three Pines is a charming oasis for the spirit Move over, Mitford. The Scotsman There's real pleasure here. Kirkus Review Perhaps the deftest talent to arrive since Minette Walters, Penny produces what many have tried but few have mastered: a psychologically acute cozy. If you don't give your heart to Gamache, you may have no heart to give.

Publishers Weekly Chief Insp. Highly recommended.


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  • As Penny demonstrates with laser-like precision, the book's title is a metaphor not only for the month of April but also for Gamache's personal and professional challenges - making this the series standout so far. And this place, this wonderous, fantastical place. The thing about the Gamache novels is that while the crimes are intriguing, the people are downright fascinating not just Gamache himself, who manages to be completely original despite his similarities to Columbo and Poirot, but also the entire cast of supporting characters, who are so strongly written that every single one of them could probably carry an entire novel all by themselves.

    The writing is sensual, full of sights and smells and tastes that will resonate with her readers. And although Penny paints an almost Grandma Moses idealized view of village life, it is a view tinged with ominous foreboding, reminiscent of the brooding images of Breughel and Bosch It's a gem. Penny's writing is rich in imagery and atmosphere and characterised by a very quick and highly verbal intelligence.

    Winter in Three Pines and the sleepy village is carpeted in snow. It's a time of peace and goodwill - until a scream pierces the biting air. There's been a murder. Local police are baffled. A spectator at the annual Boxing Day curling match has been fatally electrocuted. Despite the large crowd, there are no witnesses and - apparently - no clues.

    Called in to head the investigation, Chief Inspector Armand Gamache unravels the dead woman's past and discovers a history of secrets and enemies. But Gamache has enemies of his own. Frozen out of decision-making at the highest level of the Surete du Quebec, Gamache finds there are few he can trust. As a bitter wind blows into Three Pines, something even more chilling is sneaking up behind him Gamache is a prodigiously complicated and engaging hero, destined to become one of the classic detectives. Library Journal A highly intelliegent mystery.

    Penny's new title is sure to creat great reader demand for more stories featuring civilized and articulate Chief Inspector Armand Gamache. Booklist Gamache, a smart and likable investigator - think Columbo with an accent, or perhaps a modern-day Poirot This is a fine mystery in the classic Agatha Christie style and it is sure to leave mainstream fans wanting more. Koch For all the perplexing mechanics of the murder, and the snowed-in village setting, this is not the usual "cosy" or even a traditional puzzle mystery.

    It's a finely written, intelligent and observant book. Imbued with a constant awareness of the astonishing cold, this perfect blend of police procedural and closed-room mystery finds its solution, as in the best of those traditions, in the slow unlayering of a sorrowful past. Her characters leap from the page, her plotting is sublime, the atmosphere she builds in a bitter Quebec winter in Dead Cold, completely chilling.

    The writing is superb. A magnificent read. And like Gamache, you too will be drawn to Three Pines and to this work of magical realism masquerading as a cosy English mystery. We're back in the charming Quebec village of Three Pines The setting is wonderfully done, as are the characters. The solution is perfectly in tune with their psychology and there's plenty of evidence that Gamache will make a third appearance. Sooner or later the whole world will discover Penny. With a unique sense of timing, patience and subtle wit, Penny is able to create a whodunit that recalls those of Agatha Christie Magically bringing the postcard village of Three Pines to life, she gives it innocence, allows a touch of evil to intrude and then brings in the outsider, the intriguing Gamache, to solve the crime.

    The result is an engrossing read that will only add to the ranks of her readers. Shotsmag, UK This is a wonderful novel, full of mystery. It is as deeply layered as snow drifting down upon snow. The cold will seep into your bones so wrap up warm and have a good hot drink at your elbow. As the early morning mist clears on Thanksgiving Sunday, the homes of Three Pines come to life - all except one. To locals, the village is a safe haven.

    So they are bewildered when a well-loved member of the community is found lying dead in the maple woods. Surely it was an accident - a hunter's arrow gone astray. Who could want Jane Neal dead? Gamache knows something dark is lurking behind the white picket fences, and if he watches closely enough, Three Pines will begin to give up its secrets.

    Kirkus Review Cerebral, wise and compassionate, Gamache is destined for stardom. Don't miss this stellar debut. Publishers Weekly Like a virtuoso, Penny plays a complex variation on the theme of the clue hidden in plain sight. Filled with unexpected insights, this winning traditional mystery sets a solid foundation for future entries in the series. Booklist , Emily Melton This is a real gem of a book that slowly draws the reader into a beautifully told, lyrically written story of love, life, friendship and tragedy.

    Miss Jane Neal kept a well-read book on her nightstand, C. Lewis' Surprised by Joy. That title is a fitting phrase for Still Life. Three Pines delivers. Toronto Star, Jack Batten A delightful and clever collection of false leads, red herrings, meditations on human nature, strange behavior and other diverting stuff.

    The Calgary Herald , Joanne Sasvari, This is a much darker, cleverer, funnier and, finally, more hopeful novel than even the great Dame Agatha could have penned. It's light, witty and poignant, a thrilling debut from a new Canadian crime writer. As the last note of the chant escaped the Blessed Chapel a great silence fell, and with it came an even greater disquiet.

    The silence stretched on. And on. These were men used to silence, but this seemed extreme, even to them.

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    And still they stood in their long black robes and white tops, motionless. These were men also used to waiting. But this too seemed extreme. The less disciplined among them stole glances at the tall, slim, elderly man who had been the last to file in and would be the first to leave. Dom Philippe kept his eyes closed. Where once this was a moment of profound peace, a private moment with his private God, when Vigils had ended and before he signaled for the Angelus, now it was simply escape.

    Besides, he knew what was there. What was always there. What had been there for hundreds of years before he arrived and would, God willing, be there for centuries after he was buried in the cemetery. Two rows of men across from him, in black robes with white hoods, a simple rope tied at their waists. And beside him to his right, two more rows of men. They were facing each other across the stone floor of the chapel, like ancient battle lines.

    No, he told his weary mind. Just opposing points of view. Expressed in a healthy community. Then why was he so reluctant to open his eyes? To get the day going? To signal the great bells that would ring the Angelus to the forests and birds and lakes and fish. And the monks. To the angels and all the saints. And God. In the great silence it sounded like a bomb. With an effort he continued to keep his eyes closed. He remained still, and quiet. But there was no peace anymore.

    Now there was only turmoil, inside and out. He could feel it, vibrating from and between the two rows of waiting men. He could feel it vibrating within him. Dom Philippe counted to one hundred. Then opening his blue eyes, he stared directly across the chapel, to the short, round man who stood with his eyes open, his hands folded on his stomach, a small smile on his endlessly patient face. And the bells began. The perfect, round, rich toll left the bell tower and took off into the early morning darkness. It skimmed over the clear lake, the forests, the rolling hills.

    To be heard by all sorts of creatures. A clarion call. Their day had begun. That would be ridiculous.


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    In the background an old Beau Dommage album was playing. Beauvoir hummed quietly to the familiar tune. Beauvoir laughed. Poor Mom. Felt she had to marry him. After all, who else would have him? Beauvoir laughed again. I could hardly give you a worse gift. He reached down beside the table in the sunny kitchen. A platter of bacon and scrambled eggs with melted Brie sat on the small pine table.

    The cat leapt to the ground and found a spot on the floor where the sun hit. Beauvoir lifted it into plain sight. Happy anniversary. And I got you nothing. Annie took the plunger. You are full of it, after all. She thrust the plunger forward, gently prodding him with the red rubber suction cup as though it was a rapier and she the swordsman. So like Annie. Where other women might have pretended the ridiculous plunger was a wand, she pretended it was a sword.

    Of course, Jean-Guy realized, he would never have given a toilet plunger to any other woman. Only Annie. As he spoke he looked at Annie. Her eyes never left him, barely blinked. She took in every word, every gesture, every inflection. Enid, his ex-wife, had also listened. But there was always an edge of desperation about it, a demand. As though he owed her. As though she was dying and he was the medicine. Enid left him drained, and yet still feeling inadequate. But Annie was gentler. More generous. Like her father, she listened carefully and quietly. With Enid he never talked about his work, and she never asked.

    With Annie he told her everything. He told her what they found, how they felt, and who they arrested. Beauvoir nodded and chewed and saw the Chief Inspector in the dim cabin. Whispering the story. So as the two homicide investigators deftly searched, Chief Inspector Gamache had told Beauvoir about the bathmat. And somehow deciding a bathmat was the perfect hostess gift. Her mother never tired of asking either. Her father, on the other hand, decided I was an imbecile and never mentioned it again.

    That was worse. When they died we found the bathmat in their linen closet, still in its plastic wrapping, with the card attached. Beauvoir stopped talking and looked across at Annie. She smelled fresh and clean. Like a citron grove in the warm sunshine. No makeup. She wore warm slippers and loose, comfortable clothing. Annie was aware of fashion, and happy to be fashionable. But happier to be comfortable. She was not slim. She was not a stunning beauty. But Annie knew something most people never learn. She knew how great it was to be alive. It had taken him almost forty years, but Jean-Guy Beauvoir finally understood it too.

    And knew now there was no greater beauty. Annie was approaching thirty now. Had made him part of the team, and eventually, over the years, part of the family. Though even the Chief Inspector had no idea how much a part of the family Beauvoir had become. She held up the plunger, with its cheery red bow.

    Would die together. In a home that smelled of fresh citron and coffee. And had a cat curled around the sunshine. But hearing it now, it just seemed natural. As though this was always the plan. To have children. To grow old together. Beauvoir did the math. He was ten years older than her, and would almost certainly die first. He was relieved. But there was something troubling him. Annie grew quiet, and picked at her croissant.

    Just us. You know? He could never stop them, but it would be a disaster. The Chief and Madame Gamache will be happy. Very happy.

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    But he wanted to be sure. To know. It was in his nature. He collected facts for a living, and this uncertainty was taking its toll. It was the only shadow in a life suddenly, unexpectedly luminous. But in his heart it felt like a betrayal. She leaned toward him, her elbows and forearms resting on the croissant flakes on the pine table, and took his hand. She held it warm in hers. My father would be so happy. Seeing the look on his face she laughed and squeezed his hand.

    She adores you. Always has. They think of you as family, you know. As another son. She just held his hand and looked into his eyes. Annie paused, thinking. Dad spends his life looking for clues, piecing things together. Gathering evidence. Too close, I guess. One of the first lessons he teaches new recruits. The phone rang. Not the robust peal of the landline, but the cheerful, invasive trill of a cell. He ran to the bedroom and grabbed it off the nightstand. No number was displayed, just a word. He almost hit the small green phone icon, then hesitated.

    It managed to be both relaxed and authoritative. It was on a Saturday morning. An invitation to dinner. A query about staffing or a case going to trial. This was a call to arms. A call to action. A call that marked something dreadful had happened. And raced. And even danced a little. Not with joy at the knowledge of a terrible and premature death.

    But knowing he and the Chief and others would be on the trail again. Jean-Guy Beauvoir loved his job. But now, for the first time, he looked into the kitchen, and saw Annie standing in the doorway. Watching him. And he realized, with surprise, that he now loved something more. And just the two of us for now. Should she come? Just to organize the Scene of Crime team and leave? Hope you remember how to do it. All the way from downtown? Beauvoir felt the world stop for a moment.

    Not much traffic. Gamache laughed. And he did, placing calls, issuing orders, organizing. Then he threw a few clothes into an overnight bag. Even for a woman who cherished reality, this was far too real. She laughed, and he was glad. At the door he stopped and lowered his case to the ground. Once he was gone and she could no longer see the back of his car, Annie Gamache closed the door and held her hand to her chest. She wondered if this was how her mother had felt, for all those years. How her mother felt at that very moment. Was she too leaning against the door, having watched her heart leave?

    Having let it go. Then Annie walked over to the bookcases lining her living room. After a few minutes she found what she was looking for. She and Jean-Guy would present them with their own white bibles, with their names and baptism dates inscribed. She looked at the thick first page. Sure enough, there was her name. And a date. But instead of a cross underneath her name her parents had drawn two little hearts.

    Copyright by Three Pines Creations, Inc. She could see shadows, shapes, like wraiths moving back and forth, back and forth across the frosted glass. Appearing and disappearing. Distorted, but still human. Still the dead one lay moaning. The words had been going through her head all day, appearing and disappearing. A poem, half remembered.

    Words floating to the surface, then going under. The body of the poem beyond her grasp. The blurred figures at the far end of the long corridor seemed almost liquid, or smoke. Puppy and Kitty who are revealed to be the children of Cory's sister , are captured and are going to be submitted to this trial. Before they can, Angerman kidnaps the President and holds him at gunpoint, despite the fact that the President is holding another vial of the Fire-us, which, if broken, could destroy the world again.

    Angerman is mad with grief, having realized that the President is, in fact, his father, and yet left himself, his brother, Sam, and his mother to die while he saved his followers. In the end, Cory manages to take the gun and lock herself and the President in one of the air-tight bunkers as the vial breaks, saving the world it is implied she also shoots him and herself, rather than die of the disease.

    The series ends on a note of hope, as the family decides to head to Washington state in search of a new home and other survivors. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. For other people named Jennifer Armstrong, see Jennifer Armstrong disambiguation. This biography of a living person needs additional citations for verification. Please help by adding reliable sources. Contentious material about living persons that is unsourced or poorly sourced must be removed immediately , especially if potentially libelous or harmful. Children's literature portal. Revised August 8, The Encyclopedia of Science Fiction sf-encyclopedia.

    Retrieved Entry by 'JC', John Clute. The Alan Review. Horn Book Magazine. Retrieved March 11, Krieg Spring Walt Whitman Quarterly Review. Becoming Mary Mehan. Random House Digital, Inc. November Braun; Mary J. Massie; Sue Ann Kuby