Sometimes lightening strikes: Within days of reading NYT columnist Marilyn Stasio's list of notable crime books for 2011, I found myself browsing for books and spied a copy of the title she selected as her favorite cozy mystery, A Trick of the Light by Canadian author Louise Penny. I pounced on it! And after reading it over the course of a few winter evening, I absolutely agree with Ms. Stasio: It is a very good cozy mystery.
A Trick of the Light is book seven in a series featuring Chief Inspector Armand Gamache, head of homicide at the Surete du Quebec. In this story, the Chief Inspector and his team are in the small village of Three Pines investigating a murder. Lillian Dyson is found dead - her neck snapped - in Clara Morrow's garden the morning after a large party celebrating the opening of Clara's solo art show. The pool of suspects includes the art world personalities gathered together in the isolated village. The back-biting and jealousy running rampant among them provides plenty of drama for the Chief Inspector to sift through. And as Armand Gamache unravels the mystery, Ms. Penny does an excellent job keeping us in suspense all the way to the very last pages.
For a cozy read on a winter night, A Trick of the Light is highly recommend.