If you are looking for all Louise Penny books in order, you have landed on the right page, as you’ll find the ultimate guide to reading all her books in proper order!
Louise Penny has devised the perfect series for the voracious readers who love to read cozy mysteries and crime thrillers! Filled with the elements of family, friends, community, hope, murder, mystery, and contemporary issues like PTSD, drug addiction, and police corruption, Louise Penny has excelled in crafting a world unlike any other. We are talking about none other than the Chief Inspector Armand Gamache series.
Chief Inspector Armand Gamache series is a mystery series written by Louise Penny, consisting of 18 books, with the first book published in 2005 and the latest book released on November 29, 2022.
The entire series revolves around the life of a police detective named Armand Gamache and how he investigates and resolves the murder mysteries of people in each novel. The series takes place in the imaginary location of Three Pines, a small village in Quebec, Canada.
While plenty of mystery thrillers are out there, the absence of violence makes the Inspector Armand Gamache Series unique.
If you are also planning on reading Louise Penny’s Inspector Gamache series in order, this article will help you!
How to Read Chief Inspector Armand Gamache Series in Order?
There are a total of 18 books at the moment in Louise Penny’s Inspector Gamache series, and the best way to read all of them is in the publication order. Below is a list of all books for your reference:
- Still Life (2005)
- A Fatal Grace (2006)
- The Cruelest Month (2007)
- A Rule Against Murder (2008)
- The Brutal Telling (2009)
- Bury Your Dead (2010)
- A Trick of the Light (2011)
- The Beautiful Mystery (2012)
- How the Light Gets In (2013)
- The Long Way Home (2014)
- The Nature of the Beast (2015)
- A Great Reckoning (2016)
- Glass Houses (2017)
- Kingdom of the Blind (2018)
- A Better Man (2019)
- All the Devil Are Here (2020)
- The Madness of Crowds (2021)
- A World of Curiosities (2022)
All Louise Penny Books in Order:
The first book, Still Life, starts with the unexpected death of a 76-year-old retired school teacher named Jane Neal. Ben Hadley, the owner of the local archery club, found Jane’s body.
Chief Inspector Armand Gamache, along with his second-in-command Jean-Guy Beauvoir, investigates Jane’s mysterious death. After examining the crime scene, the detectives learn that an arrow killed Jane. Inspector Gamache also learns that Jane never allowed anyone to go beyond the kitchen in her home.
Was the killing of Jane an accident or a sinister murder scheme? Why does Jane never let anyone in her house?
A Fatal Grace is the second book in the Inspector Armand Gamache series. It’s somewhere between December 22 and New Year’s Day that a woman named Cecilia “CC” de Poitiers is murdered. She was electrocuted while watching the annual curling tournament while standing on a frozen lake. No one saw who electrocuted her even though she was in front of the entire village.
Inspector Gamache investigates the case and understands that nothing that appears to be reality is true. With the whole town, CC’s daughter, and her husband hating her, how will the inspector find out about the murderer?
The third book in the series, The Cruelest Month, focuses on Gabri, a local of Three Pines, who is hosting a séance (a meeting where people try to talk with the dead).
Despite only a few people attending the séance, people enjoyed the session. So Gabri decides to host a greater séance at the alleged haunted Old Hadley House. But things do not go as planned, and a local woman, Madeleine, dies of fright.
Gabri stops the séance and calls the police. Inspector Gamache investigates the case and soon understands that the death was not an accident because someone had drugged Madeleine. Who would be cruel enough to kill someone during spring when nature is blooming?
Louise Penny’s A Rule Against Murder is the fourth book in the Inspector Armand Gamache series, which features the inspector and his wife going to the luxurious inn called Manoir Bellechasse, situated outside the Three Pines, to celebrate their wedding anniversary.
The rich and respectable Finney Family is also there for their own celebrations. Everything is going perfectly until a member of the Finney family is murdered, and Inspector Gamache has to investigate the case.
The victim is found crushed beneath a giant heavy statue. Who has this enormous power to lift such a heavy statue, and why would someone murder someone in a hotel? It’s up to the inspector to find out the truth!
Next up in the Louise Penny books in order list is The Brutal Telling, the fifth book in her Chief Inspector Armand Gamache series.
When a body is found in Three Pine’s restaurant, the inspector takes up the case, and the owner of the restaurant, Olivier Brulé, is interrogated. Inspector Gamache discovers that there is more to Olivier’s story than he is telling. Gamache also discovers that Olivier had an estranged relationship with his father.
How has this relationship shaped the personality of Olivier? What is Olivier hiding, and aside from him, how many people are the suspects in this case? Read the book to find out more!
The sixth book in the Inspector Armand Gamache Series is named Bury Your Dead, and it features Gamache going on leave and traveling to the Quebec Literary and Historical Society library to recover from a case gone horribly wrong.
But after arriving at the Historical Society, he finds the body of Augustin Renaud in the basement of the building.
Renaud was a historian obsessed with finding the burial place of Samuel de Champlain, the founder of Quebec. Who murdered Renaud? Will Gamache be able to forgive himself and move on to the next case?
A Trick of the Light is the seventh entry in Louise Penny books in order list, and it focuses on another murder mystery that’s to be solved by Inspector Gamache.
It is Clara Morrow’s first-ever solo show at Musee d’Art. She is happy, hopeful, and nervous. Everyone at the show applauds her arts and abilities. Even her husband, an artist himself, is happy and jealous of her wife. But all of their celebrations end the next day when Clara and her husband find a dead body in their garden.
The dead body belongs to a woman they both knew and have preferred not to talk to for the last 30 years. Why has this woman appeared here dead after 30 years? And who is behind the plot of murder?
The Beautiful Mystery takes us to a monastery where around two dozen monks have cloistered themselves to live in peace and focus on their prayers. But tragedy can strike even in this harmonious and serene environment.
Frère Mathieu, the choir leader at the monastery of Saint-Gilbert-Entre-Les-Loups, is murdered. The twenty-three music monks are grieving the murder of their leader.
Inspector Gamache has come to this place to investigate the murder of Frère. As the investigation proceeds, Gamache realizes the monastery is not as united as it seems. Set in an ancient land, this beautiful mystery is sure to get you enchanted!
How the Light Gets In is set in the time of winter, and Christmas is fast approaching. A former client-turned-friend of Myrna Landers was supposed to meet her, but she did not come and is missing now.
Myrna contacts Gamache regarding this, who starts investigating the case and finds the friend dead in her home, killed by a head blow while packing.
The case became interesting by the fact that the victim was the last of the Ouellet quintuplets. She was exploited by a doctor and used by the government. With motives that are running wild but bizarre, Gamache finds himself in an unexpected position.
Next up on the list, we have The Long Way Home, the tenth book in the Louise Penny books in order list, which was released in 2014.
After an unexpected traumatic event in the past, Gamache has decided to retire as the Chief Investigator to live his life happily with her wife. Clara Marrow, the artist and neighbor of Gamache, seeks help from him.
Clara says that she and her husband, Peter, separated a year ago but had decided to meet on the first anniversary of their separation. Clara says that the reunion date has come and gone, but her husband has not come. Gamache agrees to help.
Gamache soon discovers various hints and paintings that seem to be about places where Peter might have gone. Will Peter be found? Is he alive or dead?
The Nature of the Beast is focused on a 9-year-old boy named Laurent, who is known for his extraordinary tales and lies, and no one believes him most of the time.
But when he goes missing, the villagers start to think that one of his tales might have been the truth. Soon, the boy is found murdered after he talks about a monster wielding a gun in the forest. With the discovery that the seemingly tall tale was actually true, Gamache boards on a mission to investigate the murder of Laurent.
While investigating, Gamache finds out about a giant missile launcher hidden in the forest. Who killed Laurent, and will Gamache solve the case and live his life peacefully?
The next novel in Louise Penny books in order list is A Great Reckoning, the twelfth book in the Chief Inspector Armand Gamache book series.
After retirement, Gamache accepted the command of the Sûreté Academy to train future officers. Gamache also keeps Serge LeDuc in the Academy. LeDuc was a former assistant at the Academy. Gamache also assigns four students to LeDuc to solve a mystery together. But one of the four students finds LeDuc dead.
LeDuc’s revolver had the fingerprints of Amelia (one of the four students) and Gamache. Now Amelia is missing, and everyone suspects Gamache of the foul act. Is Gamache a murderer? Where has Amelia gone? Will Gamache’s reputation ever recover after this murder?
The thirteenth book, Glass Houses, is the next entry in the Inspector Armand Gamache series, and it focuses on Gamache after he’s been appointed as the Chief Superintendent of the Surete du Quebec.
He is in the witness box to testify in a murder trial. During the trial, it becomes evident that there is more at stake than anyone could imagine. The judge also senses tension between the Chief Crown Prosecutor and Gamache.
The book switched narratives between the courtroom and last November when the dead body of Katie Evans was found. What is Gamache trying to hide? Who killed Katie Evans? The gripping thriller will change your perspective on crime novels!
In Kingdom of the Blind, Gamache has been suspended from his position due to a series of unexpected events. So, when Gamache receives a letter that invites him to an abandoned farmhouse, he becomes curious.
Gamache then discovers that Bertha Baumgartner, a woman he has never met, has named him one of the executors of her will. Soon, Gamache finds the dead body of Anthony Baumgartner, and the inspector also discovers a long-unresolved family dispute.
Who has killed Anthony? Why has Bertha left money for Gamache and some other strangers instead of her three children? But these aren’t the only problems that the former inspector will be facing!
A Better Man features Gamache back as the head of the homicide department. Jean-Guy, Gamache’s son-in-law and the current Chief Inspector of Homicide, will start a private job in Paris, so Gamache takes his previous position as the Chief Inspector.
During a meeting, Agent Cloutier informs about Vivienne, a girl who’s gone missing. Vivienne is married to an abusive husband, and while the search becomes chaotic, Gamache can’t help but put all his efforts into finding the missing lady.
But there are floods in the town, and people find Vivienne’s body and her belongings in the water. Did Vivienne drown? Or was she murdered? If she was murdered, who may be the killer? It’s up to Gamache to solve this mystery and bring the culprit to justice!
In the sixteenth book, All the Devil Are Here, Inspector Gamache and his wife take a trip to Paris, waiting for the birth of their granddaughter.
He even meets his godfather, the billionaire Stephen Horowitz. However, Gamache witnesses Stephen being hit by a delivery truck, and it is very clear that this was not an accident but a deliberate attempt at taking the elderly man’s life. And when Gamache finds a strange key in Stephen’s possession, he, along with his wife and Jean-Guy, begins his investigation.
The next day, Gamache and his wife find out that Stephen was living in a suite in a hotel instead of his apartment. In Stephen’s apartment, Gamache finds out the dead body of Alexander Plessner, a person whom Gamache does not know. Who killed that person, and why is someone trying to kill Gamache’s godfather?
The next entry in the Louise Penny books in order is The Madness of Crowds, the seventeenth book in the Chief Inspector Armand Gamache book series.
The pandemic is over, and the Fictional Canadian Government has assigned Abigail Robinson with the task of analyzing how national stability can be achieved. Abigail presents her idea of euthanasia for the elderly and sick, which shocks Gamache. Because if Abigail’s idea was to be accepted, it meant that Gamache’s Down syndrome-affected granddaughter should be killed.
Riots and clashes start in Canada regarding Abigail’s ideas, and during a University lecture, someone shoots gunfire at Abigail. She was saved because Gamache pushed her. Gamache and his detectives discover Abigail’s disabled sister’s death several years ago. Gamache believes that the death was a murder cover-up. What will the events in the book lead to?
A World of Curiosities is the eighteenth and the latest book in the Chief Inspector Armand Gamache book series, which was released in 2022.
The book starts with the murder of a drug-addicted prostitute. She prostituted her children, and when the mother’s health began to weaken, her children murdered her with a brick. The prostitute’s daughter, Fiona Arsenault, confessed and went to jail.
Gamache never believed her because he suspected Fiona’s brother Sam to be the murderer due to his bizarre personality. Gamache also sponsors Fiona after she discovers an aptitude for engineering.
But all these kindnesses turn against Gamache as he soon finds himself in a place like no other. Will he be able to solve the case and live his life peacefully?
FAQ’s about Louise Penny’s Books:
How Many Books Has Louise Penny Written?
Louise Penny has written 18 books in the Inspector Gamache series, and she has written a novella, The Hangman, and co-authored a book, State of Terror. So the total number of books to her name comes to 20.
Will There Be A New Louise Penny Book?
There hasn’t been any news about the release date of the next book by Louise Penny, but the author has teased that she’s been working on a new title in the Inspector Gamache series. So, we should have a confirmed release date soon!
How to Read Louise Penny’s Inspector Gamache Series?
The best order to read Louise Penny’s Chief Inspector Armand Gamache series is in the publication order mentioned above.
Only a few book series live up to the reader’s expectations, and the Inspector Armand Gamache series is undoubtedly one of them. Each book in the series is multilayered, with story arcs sure to amaze you.
Although these books are of murder mystery and crime thriller genre, at their core, they are all about hope, goodness, and a sense of community. With depth in characterization, progressing story arcs, compelling characters, and plotting scope, the author has excelled in creating a unique series like no other.
So, follow the reading guide featuring all Louise Penny books in order so you don’t miss out on any crucial details and know everything there is about all the characters in the series!