I reviewed the entire series for work a few months back so you can imagine how startled I was to discover that I’d not only never read this but hadn’t the slightest notion of its existence till I was scrolling through my library website for the latest in the series. Given that it doesn’t really have much food in it, and that it’s a slight novella written to promote literacy, I can see why it wasn’t included in The Nature Of The Feast, the cookbook that kicked off my Louise Penny binge.
Anyway, it’s an excellent introduction to both Inspector Gamache and Three Pines, and were I a beginning/novice reader, I’d enjoy it, too. You can see where she refrains from using her usual language in favor of writing in a simpler style, and while it does make for a slightly less lyrical read for those of us accustomed to her elegant prose, it is still a delightful whodunnit (which might also be the first of hers I figured out on my own.) Recommended not only for the completist but also for those dipping their toes in mysteries or reading in general.