Sunday Review: The Madness of Crowds by Louise Penny

Although I am a longtime fan of Louise Penny’s Armand Gamache series, over the last few years I’ve felt less enthusiastic about some of the books. I know that it’s very hard to keep a series fresh, but the pivot to having several plots about massive conspiracies didn’t appeal to me as much as her earlier work. (Your mileage may vary.)

With this novel, I think Penny struck a better balance. First, it’s set back in Three Pines, so we get to catch up with the cast of eccentric characters there. Second, the issues she explores juxtapose a debate over policies that would have national significance with the moral cost to individuals of participating in or fighting against those policies. (I am being deliberately vague to avoid spoilers.) Several characters come face to face with shadowy things hidden in their own psychological depths—reasons for their behavior that they would prefer not to admit. This isn’t unusual in a Louise Penny novel, but I found these revelations particularly poignant. 

This is one series I strongly recommend reading in publication order. And I do still recommend it. Because of this latest installment, I am looking forward again to the next Gamache book. 

Leave a comment

Filed under Book Reviews, fiction

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s