The incredible new book in Louise Penny's #1 bestselling Chief Inspector Gamache series.
When Chief Inspector Armand Gamache is asked to provide crowd control at a statistics lecture given at the Université de l'Estrie in Quebec, he is dubious. Why ask the head of homicide to provide security for what sounds like a minor, even mundane lecture?
But dangerous ideas about who deserves to live in order for society to thrive are rapidly gaining popularity, fuelled by the research of the eminent Professor Abigail Robinson. Yet for every person seduced by her theories there is another who is horrified by them. When a murder is committed days after the lecture, it's clear that within crowds can lie madness.
To uncover the truth, Gamache must put his own feelings about the divisive Professor to one side. But with her ideas gaining ground, the line separating good and evil, right and wrong, is quickly blurring - especially when the case leads unexpectedly close to home ...
PRAISE FOR LOUISE PENNY AND THE INSPECTOR GAMACHE SERIES:
'Louise Penny is one of the greatest crime writers of our times' DENISE MINA
'She makes most of her competitors seem like wannabes' THE TIMES
'Gamache has become to Canada what Hercule Poirot is to Belgium' THE NEW YORK TIMES
'Louise Penny twists and turns the plot expertly tripping the reader up just at the moment you think you might have solved the mystery' DAILY EXPRESS
'The series is deep and grand and altogether extraordinary . . . Miraculous' WASHINGTON POST
'No one does atmospheric quite like Louise Penny.' ELLY GRIFFITHS
'An absolute joy' IRISH TIMES
APPLE BOOKS REVIEW
Dangerous ideas lead to violent ends in Louise Penny’s gripping post-COVID murder mystery. When the idyllic Québec town of Three Pines invites statistician Abigail Robinson to present her government-funded findings at the local university over the quiet Christmas break, Chief Inspector Armand Gamache is asked to serve as her security detail. At first, he doesn’t get why someone with his skill and experience—he’s on a first-name basis with the premier!—would be handed such a basic assignment. Then the inspector learns that Professor Robinson’s viral conclusions toward fixing post-COVID Canada involve some horrifying suggestions—and they’re starting to gain traction in the minds of people you’d think would know better. With a cast of unforgettable characters, The Madness of Crowds had us hooked from the very first page.
Might a post-Covid Canada value individual lives less? That provocative question's at the heart of bestseller Penny's brilliant 17th whodunit featuring S ret du Qu bec Chief Insp. Armand Gamache (after 2020's All the Devils Are Here). Gamache, who has been devastated to learn that nursing homes were abandoned during the pandemic, leaving the vulnerable residents to die alone, is discomfited to be asked to provide security for a lecture by a controversial figure, statistician Abigail Robinson. After analyzing the pandemic's social and economic fallout for the Canadian government, Robinson concluded that the health care system and the economy would be in good shape, if only the elderly and infirm were euthanized so everyone else could have adequate resources. The government disclaimed her findings, but her views have proven disturbingly popular among a segment of the population. Gamache saves Robinson from an assassin's bullet at the talk, but a related murder in his home village of Three Pines follows. Seamlessly integrating debates about scientific experimentation and morality into a fair-play puzzle, Penny excels at placing her characters in challenging ethical quandaries. This author just goes from strength to strength.