This one was fantastic. This book shakes things up in Three Pines when one of the characters we know and love (Olivier) is looking like a likely suspect in the murder of a hermit. Readers are given insights into Olivier and it was like finding out someone you have been hanging out with for a long time is a hired assassin. This book was definitely about how little white lies eventually become monstrous things you eventually cannot bear to be revealed. I also got a kick out of the fact that we don't really get the resolution to a lot of things revealed in this book, until book #6.
"The Brutal Telling" is a very long winding book that kept me reading with nerves the whole time. Chief Inspector Gamache is called in when a dead body is found at Olivier's bistro. Readers know that Oilivier is hiding something and it takes Gamache very little work to find out what Olivier is hiding. And it's some doozies.
Gamache and his team are great and we get introduced to a new character, Paul Morin, that Gamache takes onto his misfit homicide team. Can I also say, that Jean-Guy (Armand's second in command) constant jealously of anyone new that can take Gamache's attention away from him is getting repetitive? Cause it is. He goes through jealous bouts about not knowing all that Gamache is thinking at every second of the day.
The Three Pines residents are stirred up about revelations dealing with Olivier and the new residents who have taken over the Hadley home. The new characters, Marc and Dominique Gilbert plan on taken the home and turning it into a luxury spa. Due to the fact the spa may end up taking customers away from Olivier and Gaby's place the new neighbors have a lot of friction with each other.
We also have Clara make what looks like a fatal mistake with regards to her art career. Can I also say that her husband is terrible? Peter's jealously and attempts to ruin Clara (without her knowledge) are just off-putting. I hope she wakes up to what he is doing to her. I think Mryna (her best friend) gets it though.
We get a lot of Ruth in this one and I actually enjoyed her. It just took 5 books. Ruth and her pet duck Rosa cracked me up.
The writing was top-notch. Even though I gave this 5 stars, I will say the flow was off here and there. There is a lot going on in this one. And honestly, based on what happens in book #5 I should have gone back and lowered a star on this one, but I am just going to keep my complaints about the series to date to my book #5 review.
The setting of Three Pines seems more sinister in this one. Once we find out what Olivier has been up to and the new residents, along with the hermit's secrets, it feels like you don't know this place after 5 books.
The ending felt anti-climatic to me and now I know why after reading the next book. Things felt unfinished in this one.