Thursday, September 05, 2013

How a sigh might look

Had the Chief Inspector been blindfolded he could have described the familiar shop. The walls were lined with bookcases filled with hardcovers and paperbacks. With fiction and biography, science and science fiction. Mysteries and religion. Poetry and cookbooks. It was a room filled with thoughts and feeling and creation and desires. New and used.

Threadbare Oriental rugs were scattered on the wood floor, giving it the feel of a well-used library in an old country home.

A cheerful wreath was tacked on the door into Myrna's New and Used Bookstore, and a Christmas tree stood in a corner. Gifts were piled underneath and there was the slight sweet scent of balsam.

A black cast-iron woodstove sat in the center of the room, with a kettle simmering on top of it and an armchair on either side.

It hadn't changed since the day Gamache had first entered Myrna's bookstore years before. Right down to the unfashionable floral slipcovers on the sofa and easy chairs in the bay window. Books were piled next to one of the sagging seats and back copies of The New Yorker and National Geographic were scattered on the coffee table.

It was, Gamache felt, how a sigh might look.

— from How the Light Gets In, by Louise Penny.

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