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From the author of the Agatha Raisin television series... Death of a Poison Pen: A Hamish Macbeth Mystery When the residents of Lochdubh begin receiving poison pen letters, no one takes them seriously. But Constable Hamish Macbeth fears them, and his instincts prove correct when the postmistress is found hanging from a rope with a vicious poison pen letter at her feet.


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From the author of the Agatha Raisin television series... Death of a Poison Pen: A Hamish Macbeth Mystery When the residents of Lochdubh begin receiving poison pen letters, no one takes them seriously. But Constable Hamish Macbeth fears them, and his instincts prove correct when the postmistress is found hanging from a rope with a vicious poison pen letter at her feet.

30 review for Death of a Poison Pen

  1. 5 out of 5

    Bobby Underwood

    The Highlands are habitually rife with humor and delicious mystery between the covers of every Hamish Macbeth book from author M.C. Beaton. Constable for a patch of Scotland where gossip and superstition often exasperate Hamish Macbeth, he nonetheless loves his fair Lochdubh and its quirky residents. The mysteries are certainly fun, but it is the atmosphere which keeps readers coming back time and again. Finishing a Hamish book always seems to lighten our load and remind us it is the small thing The Highlands are habitually rife with humor and delicious mystery between the covers of every Hamish Macbeth book from author M.C. Beaton. Constable for a patch of Scotland where gossip and superstition often exasperate Hamish Macbeth, he nonetheless loves his fair Lochdubh and its quirky residents. The mysteries are certainly fun, but it is the atmosphere which keeps readers coming back time and again. Finishing a Hamish book always seems to lighten our load and remind us it is the small things in life which really matter. Jenny Ogilve arrives from London to eyeball the constable she's heard so much about from Priscilla, who has become engaged to someone other than Hamish. Jenny would like nothing better than to make Priscilla jealous by snagging the ever-elusive Macbeth. With reporter Elspeth diverting Jenny's amateurish attempts at every turn, however, and Hamish with a suicide to investigate, the task at hand becomes quite tricky. Once Hamish realizes what she's up to, he takes Priscilla's advice and lets her help him question the residents of Braike. Before this one is over, he'll wish he hadn't! Hamish isn't buying the death of the Braike postmistress as suicide. A murder soon follows that death and Hamish suspects poison pen letters may somehow be at the heart of it all. The headmistress might have had a wee bit more interest in a couple of her female students than was proper, and the murder victim may have been having an affair. Jenny gets sidetracked while helping Hamish. leading to some typically hilarious doings; a perfect example of why readers love this series so much. The dubious seer, Angus, the Currie sisters, Lugs and all the other quirky characters of Lochdubh we've come to enjoy visiting so much are all present in this one. The combination of mystery and humor with a Highland setting is irresistible. There is something wonderful between the covers of a Hamish Macbeth book that nearly defies description, and must be experienced by the reader. A fine entry in a marvelous mystery series. Highly recommended!

  2. 4 out of 5

    Marilyn

    I like the character Hamish Macbeth and this series HOWEVER I have a problem with this particular book. Hamish remembers that a dentist had been killed in Braikie (Death of a Dentist) and that an elderly man, Fred Sutherland, lived above the dentist's office. He wondered whether Fred still lived in that same place. SERIOUSLY??? Certainly Hamish has found lots of dead bodies in various places, but HOW WOULD HE HAVE FORGOTTEN that Fred was killed not long after the dentist??? WHERE ARE THE COPY ED I like the character Hamish Macbeth and this series HOWEVER I have a problem with this particular book. Hamish remembers that a dentist had been killed in Braikie (Death of a Dentist) and that an elderly man, Fred Sutherland, lived above the dentist's office. He wondered whether Fred still lived in that same place. SERIOUSLY??? Certainly Hamish has found lots of dead bodies in various places, but HOW WOULD HE HAVE FORGOTTEN that Fred was killed not long after the dentist??? WHERE ARE THE COPY EDITORS??? WHY can't authors keep track of the stories they have created?

  3. 5 out of 5

    Kimberly Reads Books

    As always, another great cozy mystery featuring Hamish Macbeth. Death of a Poison Pen was among one of my favorites I've read so far. The plot was unusual with the addition of the poison pen letters and the characters were as always quirky and charming. I loved the romantic twists towards the end of the book and can't wait to read the next in the series. As always, another great cozy mystery featuring Hamish Macbeth. Death of a Poison Pen was among one of my favorites I've read so far. The plot was unusual with the addition of the poison pen letters and the characters were as always quirky and charming. I loved the romantic twists towards the end of the book and can't wait to read the next in the series.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Julie Durnell

    Great twisty plot-didn't see the solution coming-loved the ending! Great twisty plot-didn't see the solution coming-loved the ending!

  5. 4 out of 5

    The Flooze

    It's amazing how increasingly complicated these stories get. What starts as an irritating case of poison pen letters ends with multiple shocking deaths in the village of Braikie. Hamish's investigations are helped and hindered by two women. Though both have an interest in him, their motivations are muddled. Jenny, a visitor with a jealous streak, is mostly eager to put Priscilla's nose out of joint. Elspeth, the local reporter, is genuinely attracted to the man but is also very keen to find a st It's amazing how increasingly complicated these stories get. What starts as an irritating case of poison pen letters ends with multiple shocking deaths in the village of Braikie. Hamish's investigations are helped and hindered by two women. Though both have an interest in him, their motivations are muddled. Jenny, a visitor with a jealous streak, is mostly eager to put Priscilla's nose out of joint. Elspeth, the local reporter, is genuinely attracted to the man but is also very keen to find a story. On the balance, I like Elspeth. But I think both she and Hamish are not completely themselves with each another. I find myself hoping they won't become a proper item. Still, her presence in the story gives Hamish someone clever and invested to discuss ideas with - someone more down-to-earth than Perfect Priscilla. Both this book and the last make particular use of the ferocity of the Highland weather. Beaton often emphasizes the dangers of not giving nature its due respect, but here and in Death of a Village, the consequences are striking. Her description of violent waves battering houses, cars, and people is frightening. It reminded me of why I've never loved driving along coast roads in Ireland. After lots of death and scandal, it's only fair that Beaton wrap everything up with a bit of humor. I find any time the villagers of Lochdubh all get together for a gossip or on a mission, hilarity is soon to follow. The final scenes do not disappoint. Ah, Hamish. How the locals do despair of you and love you all at once.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Adam

    A few disclaimers before I go on with this review. 1. This was a free Barnes and Noble serial read so I didn't choose it, it chose me. 2. This is the 19th book in a series (great starting point B&N!) so I do not know all the nuances of the life and times of Hamish Macbeth overall, just this little slice of it. 3. Spoilers obviously follow. 4. On to the review. This is titled Death of a Poison Pen, but I think it really should have been called Everyone in this book is lousy at their job and should A few disclaimers before I go on with this review. 1. This was a free Barnes and Noble serial read so I didn't choose it, it chose me. 2. This is the 19th book in a series (great starting point B&N!) so I do not know all the nuances of the life and times of Hamish Macbeth overall, just this little slice of it. 3. Spoilers obviously follow. 4. On to the review. This is titled Death of a Poison Pen, but I think it really should have been called Everyone in this book is lousy at their job and should be fired (or every woman wants to hop into bed with Hamish Macbeth and everyone in this book is terrible at their job). The premise here is that in a little Scottish town called Lochdubh (pronounced Lockdoo) there is someone writing awful letters about people, threatening to expose some secret or other of theirs. The letters are basically based on hearsay or just flat out made up material. Hamish Macbeth the local detective is on the case and is going to stop this letter writer and catch the person doing it before the letters drive someone to suicide. Hamish, our local hero has recently broken up with his fiance. The fiance has a friend who has heard so much talk about Hamish that she thinks it's a good idea to go to Lochdubh and basically try and snag Hamish for herself. So bad letters and a chance for romance. So far so good. What crime the letter writer is committing unless maybe blackmail, was unclear. Jenny, the woman who is going after Hamish because of some stories she heard decides to basically be MIA from her job for a few weeks and try to land the guy. She's pretty dumb though considering she never looked at a picture of the guy and is super disappointed when she sees him yet she still tries to date him because, um, I dunno it wasn't clear. There's also a reporter named Elspeth who wants to date Hamish and doesn't like the new girl because obviously a rival. Jenny's boss should definitely fire her. Hamish is really bad at his job because bodies start dropping all over town and he can't figure out who the hell is writing these letters. He takes the letters to a handwriting expert which I thought was good idea until I realized what that meant in this book. I thought they would be like ok, we will take writing samples of things we see around town and try to match the handwriting and stuff and then we will know who the criminal is. NOOOOOOPE. The handwriting expert is like "because the O's are this way, this person has something to hide", etc. This is dis-proven junk science people! I mean I know this is the 19th book in a detective romance series but come on, do a little more research than a really bad Law and Order episode please. Also, Jenny decides to stick around to try and date Hamish more even though she hates the town, can't really get into Hamish and doesn't seem to understand that when you are outside of London there might be people who don't wear high heels. There was also a completely ridiculous incident involving thong underwear and old ladies finding said underwear that I refuse to get into right here. Then, in the least ethical move ever, Hamish decides to basically take Jenny around town with him while trying to interview people about these deaths. Uh, dude, I am pretty sure you should fire him for that alone. This leads to Jenny being kidnapped because, well, she is dumb and thinks she can help this other reporter guy to get a job and be his wife by solving a case and getting a story for him. Good luck with that. That guy, I think his name was Joe or John or something. Definitely with a J. Look that doesn't matter, he plagiarized Elspeth to get hired by national newspapers and blamed everyone else. Elspeth on the other hand plagiarizes the cooking column in her paper but apparently that is less of a fireable offense than the other guy doing it. The Joe or John, let's just call him Mr. J cause I wasn't caring to pay that much attention at this point, helps Jenny to steal a doctors note (illegal apparently) so she can fake sick longer and not go back to work. Hamish finds out and decides to do nothing. Awesome police work Hamish! Ok but onto the really weird stuff. One of the people who dies is a teacher who is really mean to most students except for a couple of girls. She seems to have gotten close to one girl, then stopped helping her and also decided to get close to this other girl. Hamish and Jenny and Elspeth seem to come to the conclusion that this makes the teacher a lesbian and the way that this was written it makes you think that everyone in town thinks lesbians are evil. I really hated that aspect of this book, flat out, no apologies, could not stand that. In one part Hamish asks Amy (I think it was her), one of the girls the teacher got close to, if she knew the teacher was a lesbian. Amy says no, I didn't know she was Greek. So Hamish thinks, ah well at least Amy is still an innocent girl. So a few things to unpack here. 1. That means that if you know of, or have met a lesbian, you are not "an innocent" person. 2. Amy was supposed to be an A student and really bright. I mean I know Scotland is more remote than some countries but lesbians exist there too, and not just the kind from Greece. If she had any brains in her head, she knew what Hamish meant. Then there is this other incident at an old folk's home where they show people movies. Without even pre-screening it the worker there puts in a video that shows one of the murders. I'm sorry, I have worked in both old folk's homes and schools and there is one thing I know. Do NOT put in a video unless you have pre-screened the thing. Anyway, panic ensues, old people are detained and grilled and Hamish is still as dumb as a brick about who did it. Turns out that this girl Amy was adopted and apparently that is so shameful that her adoptive parents are willing to kill people to hide it. It was never really clear to me why that would drive someone to multiple murders but I can let that slide a little because, hey, real people in real life do murder people for idiotic reasons at times. What I can't let slide is the scene where they are caught because they have kidnapped Jenny and take her out to this quarry, Hamish and Elspeth following and the wife is afraid of faeries. Yes, you read that right. The murdery criminal wife is defeated by a reporter who shouldn't be there in the first place (sign my fire Hamish Mcbeth petition below) making spooky ghost noises to sound like a faerie. It somehow works, Jenny is saved, bad guys are arrested and only like three people in town had to die before Hamish could get it together enough to have a reporter help him arrest people. Then at the end of the book, Priscilla, the ex-fiance (you knew this was coming) comes over to see Hamish because she read about her friend being kidnapped. Guess what he is doing? Yes you got it, he was doing Elspeth. Despite being told by like six people that she should come back at a different time, Priscilla walks in on them. That ended the book and really, really did not make me want to continue the series to find out who wants to marry Hamish next. Petition to Fire Hamish Macbeth I hereby petition that Hamish Macbeth should be fired for the following reasons: 1. He brings civilians out to do investigative research who have no qualifications and are not authorized to even be there. 2. He lets crimes he actually sees and has proof of slide. 3. He doesn't even radio in where he is going half the time and never takes police backup although, he might bring civilians. 4. He seems to have been dating so many women, he is probably most guilty of spreading social diseases around town, and possibly into London 5. He can't even make his own scary ghostlike faerie noises. What kind of cop is that? Sign here if you agree____________

  7. 5 out of 5

    Nathalie

    I love the Hamish Macbeth mysteries by M.C. Beaton! This is my second time through this particular title. I really like reader Graeme Malcolm who just personifies Hamish to me. Hamish is the village bobby in Lochdubh (pronounced Lor-Doo) in Scotland. He is brilliant but is not ambitious, preferring to stay in his little police cottage with his few sheep and hens and his dog. He was once promoted to sergeant and had to move to the drug infested Strathbane which he hated. In this book, poison pen I love the Hamish Macbeth mysteries by M.C. Beaton! This is my second time through this particular title. I really like reader Graeme Malcolm who just personifies Hamish to me. Hamish is the village bobby in Lochdubh (pronounced Lor-Doo) in Scotland. He is brilliant but is not ambitious, preferring to stay in his little police cottage with his few sheep and hens and his dog. He was once promoted to sergeant and had to move to the drug infested Strathbane which he hated. In this book, poison pen letters have been sent to many villagers-- some filled with wild and laughable accusations such as Hamish having an affair with the paragon wife of the local clergy but some having hit their mark. The town's postmistress is found dead...is it suicide or murder as Hamish's instincts lead him to believe. Who is willing to kill to prevent the truth being known? Mix in the local colorful characters of the village and you are in for a pleasant mystery-filled visit to Lochdubh. Havers!

  8. 5 out of 5

    Jessica

    Boy, I tell ya, taking a holiday in the Highlands sounds awfy risky . . .

  9. 5 out of 5

    Karen

    Going to try something new. This book is available as a serial read on Barnes and Noble. So you are allowed a bit of the story to read each day of the month. I have read a few of the author's other books so I thought I would give this a try. We shall see how this goes. Hope it is worth the torture of waiting to read the next part. Well it did not take a month to read the whole book and it was entertaining but I struggled with having to stop at a good point and waiting until the next day to read Going to try something new. This book is available as a serial read on Barnes and Noble. So you are allowed a bit of the story to read each day of the month. I have read a few of the author's other books so I thought I would give this a try. We shall see how this goes. Hope it is worth the torture of waiting to read the next part. Well it did not take a month to read the whole book and it was entertaining but I struggled with having to stop at a good point and waiting until the next day to read it. Some one in down is sending out nasty letters to their neighbors. They are silly overall except they are worrying Hamish McBeth. As constable , McBeth is concerned that the poison pen letters might lead to something worse. Sadly, he is correct. The post mistress is found dead hanged in her apartment and their is a poison pen letter laying on the ground before her. Constable McBeth needs to track down a killer but his personal life is complicating everything. A friend of his former fiance has come to town and she seems to be attracted to Hamish. So tracking down a killer becomes more complicated when Hamish is dodging women and he still does not know if the nasty letters caused the death of the postmistress until another death occurs. Who is writing these Letters? Is the writer of these nasty letters the killer? if not, who Is? Constable Hamish McBeth has his plate full tracking down the answers to this problem but only if he does not get bogged down by his personal life. This book was enjoyable. I am not sure if I would really give it a 4 star rating but since I cannot give it a 3.5 star review up to 4 it goes. If you noticed, this is the 19th book in the McBeth series. I felt as if I was missing some parts of the overall story by jumping in the middle of the series. The personal history and recurring characters already had been established and while I got the general background I still felt like I was missing something. McBeth is a good character in solving murder but as a man he is annoying. He seemed clueless that a girl shows up in down for no reason except to catch his attention. Hamish seems likes he is attracted to a news reporter friend but he is also pining for his ex-girlfriend who is now engaged to another man and lives away. Since I do not know all the personal history between these people, I can only go on my impressions from this story and my impression is this man needs to take a good hard look at how he feels about each woman in his life and get his act together in his love life. I enjoyed the mystery and overall the characters in this book but I feel I would have enjoyed it better if I had read the series from the beginning. So I recommend if you like a cozy mysteries, it is a good read but starting at the beginning of the series might be best if you like knowing your characters.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Dale Safford

    I listened to this book once, then had an unexpected trip come up and it was what I had available, so I heard it again, all within two weeks. It was just as good the second time! I love these characters. The dry humor is very entertaining, especially when mentioning lesbians, and an innocent schoolgirl responds "they didn't look Greek to me." :-) And the old biddies finding "thong" underwear, and telling the owner of them to "get a respectable pair of knickers that are tight at the knee." LOL Th I listened to this book once, then had an unexpected trip come up and it was what I had available, so I heard it again, all within two weeks. It was just as good the second time! I love these characters. The dry humor is very entertaining, especially when mentioning lesbians, and an innocent schoolgirl responds "they didn't look Greek to me." :-) And the old biddies finding "thong" underwear, and telling the owner of them to "get a respectable pair of knickers that are tight at the knee." LOL The only criticism is that the conclusion leaves you hanging, and I had to listen twice to make sure I wasn't missing something; I wasn't - it just STOPS. A friend of Hamish Macbeth's love interest Priscilla named Jenny Ogilvie comes from London intent on stealing her friend's guy. She arrives as Hamish and newspaper reporter Elspeth Grant are investigating poison pen letters that several people have received. Then the postmistress is found hanging with one of the letters at her feet. Hamish's superiors think it is a clear case of suicide, but things don't add up to him and he suspects murder (said with a wonderful Scottish lilt!). Will he, with help from Elsbeth and occasionally Jenny, be able to solve this murder before another one occurs?

  11. 4 out of 5

    meghann

    This was the Barnes and Noble Nook serial read for the month of January. It's always a bit odd to jump into a series at book 19. I do feel like this did a good job of summarizing the important parts of what happened previously so that I was not lost. I really liked Hamish and would be interested in reading more of this series because of him. But I don't think I have ever read a book with so many characters I just could not stand. Jenny is probably the worst I have ever come across. She is feeling This was the Barnes and Noble Nook serial read for the month of January. It's always a bit odd to jump into a series at book 19. I do feel like this did a good job of summarizing the important parts of what happened previously so that I was not lost. I really liked Hamish and would be interested in reading more of this series because of him. But I don't think I have ever read a book with so many characters I just could not stand. Jenny is probably the worst I have ever come across. She is feeling jealous of her best friend, so she decides to secretly travel to said friend's hometown and try to hook up with her ex. Lovely. Pat also falls into the category of horrible people, and I really felt like he and Jenny got off easy in this book. The good news is that I don't think they would be in other books in the series, but I wonder if the others are full of characters like that as well. I'm on the fence with Elspeth and was not a fan of the ending when it came to her, but I've also missed out on all the history in the early books. The mystery itself was full of twists and turns. I thought the motives were a bit far-fetched when all was revealed, but I still enjoyed the story.

  12. 4 out of 5

    C.J. Prince

    I was disappointed in #19 and was going to set Hamish Macbeth aside for a bit. However, driven by curiosity, I grabbed this one and found Hamish to be his own charming self. M.C. Beaton is increasingly clever in plot lines and murder and the entangled complexity of who-dun-it. Someone knows something about the locals, details that will humiliate, anger or set one off for revenge. Poison pen letters, details that can injure in a small town. All the ingredients for a murder. Now, will Hamish ever g I was disappointed in #19 and was going to set Hamish Macbeth aside for a bit. However, driven by curiosity, I grabbed this one and found Hamish to be his own charming self. M.C. Beaton is increasingly clever in plot lines and murder and the entangled complexity of who-dun-it. Someone knows something about the locals, details that will humiliate, anger or set one off for revenge. Poison pen letters, details that can injure in a small town. All the ingredients for a murder. Now, will Hamish ever get his love life together? Just when we're sure he's over Priscilla,some twinge of interest floats through his mind. He's attracted to Elspeth Grant in the last few books but is often rude or bumbling and nothing happens. After book #20, I do hope M.C. Beaton will allow Hamish a way to develop a relationship with a woman. He is not that inept. And it is what he wants except when he's stumped by cirucmstances and thinks sleeping with Lugs, his dog, is quite perfect.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Yolanda

    I am loving this series of mysteries set in Scotland and the bumbling redheaded Detective Hamis MacBeth. I love the setting of this book and the interesting characters that populate village life here in the North of Scotland and the sexual tension that abounds between Elspeth and him. In this Mystery someone is sending poison pen letters causing people to die and Hamish must find out who and why along the way fighting off the advances of Jenny. In Beatons description of the North of Scotland you l I am loving this series of mysteries set in Scotland and the bumbling redheaded Detective Hamis MacBeth. I love the setting of this book and the interesting characters that populate village life here in the North of Scotland and the sexual tension that abounds between Elspeth and him. In this Mystery someone is sending poison pen letters causing people to die and Hamish must find out who and why along the way fighting off the advances of Jenny. In Beatons description of the North of Scotland you learn a lot about this area and the people and customs of this part of the U.K.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Rebecca

    Another fun small village mystery in this series. There isn't much more that I haven't said about this series, but I continue to enjoy it. I love how Hamish is casually smarter than everyone else. And how the author can write very silly characters who aren't too over the top, but are sometimes hard to believe. Nosiness and jealous always seemed to prevail over common sense, typically getting people into trouble. Hamish being attracted to everyone women he's with (it seems) may get old, but lucki Another fun small village mystery in this series. There isn't much more that I haven't said about this series, but I continue to enjoy it. I love how Hamish is casually smarter than everyone else. And how the author can write very silly characters who aren't too over the top, but are sometimes hard to believe. Nosiness and jealous always seemed to prevail over common sense, typically getting people into trouble. Hamish being attracted to everyone women he's with (it seems) may get old, but luckily it's usually presented in such a fun way.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Dany

    2.5 Stars! I love Cozy mysteries, but this one had very little mystery and pages and pages full of stupid characters. Every single person (except for the main character) was either stupid or incredibly mean and self-centered. This is the first book I’ve read in this series, so I don’t know if I just picked a bad one or this is just the way things are in these books. I really liked Hamish, but that’s about it :(

  16. 5 out of 5

    Will Bellais

    Just finished this one. Great fun story of prudish, religious types who let their fear of "bastard-hood" create a terrible chain of murders. The touch of Scotland in this one is strong. I always enjoy Hamish MacBeth -- and I've been M.C. Beaton long before she started the successful mystery series. (There are two continuing series). Just finished this one. Great fun story of prudish, religious types who let their fear of "bastard-hood" create a terrible chain of murders. The touch of Scotland in this one is strong. I always enjoy Hamish MacBeth -- and I've been M.C. Beaton long before she started the successful mystery series. (There are two continuing series).

  17. 4 out of 5

    Greg

    Exactly what a cozy is supposed to be: cozy, perfect for a lazy afternoon with a cuppa. I'm halfway through Gyorgy Spiro's astonishing "Captivity" and needed to step back for a breather. So, a huge thanks to M.C. Beaton for providing this very cozy cozy. Exactly what a cozy is supposed to be: cozy, perfect for a lazy afternoon with a cuppa. I'm halfway through Gyorgy Spiro's astonishing "Captivity" and needed to step back for a breather. So, a huge thanks to M.C. Beaton for providing this very cozy cozy.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Patricia Mack

    I m endlessly delighted with this series and the main character, Hamish MacBeth. Clever casting, ingeneous story lines and gentle humor. .. what could be better

  19. 5 out of 5

    Rose Blum

    Thoroughly enjoyable ~ great mental picture of the Highland scenery ~ excellent detective work ~ Hamish Macbeth at his red headed best!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! :)

  20. 4 out of 5

    Niki

    was really pleased to read a "hamish macbeth" whodunit again - a few twists, some humor, and the wonderful atmosphere of the Highlands was really pleased to read a "hamish macbeth" whodunit again - a few twists, some humor, and the wonderful atmosphere of the Highlands

  21. 5 out of 5

    JZ

    My favorite one so far. I particularly loved the ending. lol

  22. 5 out of 5

    Maria

    As usual, I enjoy all Hamish Macbeth books. In this one, Pricilla is putting off her wedding, a couple of people are killed and there are WAY too many suspects. In the middle of trying to find the killer, Hamish is being seduced by Pricilla's best friend, who is jealous of her life and thinks that capturing Hamish will bring her down a peg. Elspeth (sp?) is also still around, but will she stay or take a job at a better newspaper? Or will her competition beat her out of it? I've come to enjoy both As usual, I enjoy all Hamish Macbeth books. In this one, Pricilla is putting off her wedding, a couple of people are killed and there are WAY too many suspects. In the middle of trying to find the killer, Hamish is being seduced by Pricilla's best friend, who is jealous of her life and thinks that capturing Hamish will bring her down a peg. Elspeth (sp?) is also still around, but will she stay or take a job at a better newspaper? Or will her competition beat her out of it? I've come to enjoy both the stories and the writing. The only reason I don't give it five stars is that the general feel of the books is about the same. I do love that Hamish seems to be moving forward instead of being trapped in the same repetitive conversations and relationships. Well done!

  23. 4 out of 5

    Jayne Catherine pinkett

    Worse one in the series I've read Worse one in the series I've read

  24. 4 out of 5

    Elizabeth

    Still 13 left in the series. Yay!

  25. 5 out of 5

    Rebecca Hock

    Another enjoyable read in the Hamish Macbeth mystery series. I am really enjoying this series.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Michele

    No surprises here. Someone in or around Loch Dubh dies in a peculiar manner. Hamish deduces that it's murder. Currie sisters show up to act as Greek Chorus? Check. Angela Brodie takes care of the dog? Check. Elspeth or Priscilla help Hamish on the case? Check. Blair give Hamish a hard time? Check. Lots of driving around the sometimes gorgeous, sometimes dismal landscape? Check. This one was either written before the wild cat came to live with Hamish or she has been disposed of and I missed the b No surprises here. Someone in or around Loch Dubh dies in a peculiar manner. Hamish deduces that it's murder. Currie sisters show up to act as Greek Chorus? Check. Angela Brodie takes care of the dog? Check. Elspeth or Priscilla help Hamish on the case? Check. Blair give Hamish a hard time? Check. Lots of driving around the sometimes gorgeous, sometimes dismal landscape? Check. This one was either written before the wild cat came to live with Hamish or she has been disposed of and I missed the book where that happened. This had the added attraction of Priscilla's frenemy "Jennie" showing up to try and make time with Hamish in order to irritate Priscilla. Jennie gets in the way of an investigation into the murder of the local post mistress and then the retired head mistress of a local school. Someone with a poison pen is writing nasty letters to the locals, accusing them of things that aren't true. When the bodies begin to pile up, Hamish and Elspeth investigate with some help from the flirtatious Jennie. I really rather wish Hamish (and the author) would make up their mind about the detective's on again/off again romances with both Priscilla and Elspeth. Yes, it's generally death to settle a series' on going romantic issues, but Hamish (and the reader) aren't getting any younger, though Hamish ages more slowly than the reader does. (He was probably 35 when the series began and is now maybe 37, despite going from NO technology of any kind to every sort of tech invented in the last year alone.)

  27. 4 out of 5

    April

    So here we have the first B&N Readouts selection for 2018, a mystery revolving around jealousy and murder, although the two are not in relation to each other. I'm enjoying the process of imagining the setting of this book, as it takes place in the Scottish Highlands, which sounds just beautiful (albeit dangerous) so far. Although I'm beginning this series with the 19th book, so I suppose there are quite a few details and events that I've missed, regarding the main character, Hamish Macbeth. But, So here we have the first B&N Readouts selection for 2018, a mystery revolving around jealousy and murder, although the two are not in relation to each other. I'm enjoying the process of imagining the setting of this book, as it takes place in the Scottish Highlands, which sounds just beautiful (albeit dangerous) so far. Although I'm beginning this series with the 19th book, so I suppose there are quite a few details and events that I've missed, regarding the main character, Hamish Macbeth. But, I never felt lost within the story and it was intriguing to see how the mystery played out. There were some definite twists and turns that took me by surprise as well. I did not care for the characters of Jenny Ogilvie or Pat Mallone, who were pretty much made for each other, both being incredibly jealous and vindictive in getting what they wanted, but I was happy that at least Pat got exactly what was coming to him in the end. I thought the mystery of the poison pen writer was well-planned and I liked the way Hamish went about solving it. I enjoyed the Scottish slang in the book as well, although I had to resort to asking my 100% Scottish mother-in-law what "scunner" meant. However, I could pick up the gist of the meaning via the context it was used. (It's a not-so-nice description for a person, btw.) Overall, it was a nice read, and a fun glimpse into the atmosphere of the Scottish Highlands!

  28. 5 out of 5

    Kay

    One of the best in the Hamish Macbeth series, this one has all I love: a real mystery at the heart of the murders, unexpected twist in discovering who it is, love interest that heats up among three women, one getting the prize (at least for now), and a plot that touches many of us--the hurt of rumor and accusation and using secrets to make serious trouble-- Lochdubh in all its glory, Blair in all his awfulness, and Hamish, as ever, the Hamish we love. Doesn't ever drag, and it seemed there was a One of the best in the Hamish Macbeth series, this one has all I love: a real mystery at the heart of the murders, unexpected twist in discovering who it is, love interest that heats up among three women, one getting the prize (at least for now), and a plot that touches many of us--the hurt of rumor and accusation and using secrets to make serious trouble-- Lochdubh in all its glory, Blair in all his awfulness, and Hamish, as ever, the Hamish we love. Doesn't ever drag, and it seemed there was a little more to Hamish than there had been. Plot was racing along and I read fast, so just had to start over and re-read --and a double pleasure. Seeing through facades is one of Hamish's best qualities, and his half-hopefulness that one of his ladies will stay with him is a facade he never sees through, for he is a loner and a man who loves his comforts. But give him a nasty bit of work and he'll figure it out, and be kind throughout. I stay smiling for days after I've read a Hamish and this will be one of my forever favorites.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Denise Barney

    This was the free Serial Read for the month of January on the Barnes & Noble Nook app. Hamish Macbeth is a policeman in a small village in the Highlands. He likes it and doesn’t want to be promoted to a larger town. So he doesn’t mind when his “boss” takes credit for his work. Hamish also seems to have problems with making commitments to girlfriends, which figures into this story. Someone is writing “poison pen” letters and sending them to various folks. This is a nuisance until the Postmistress This was the free Serial Read for the month of January on the Barnes & Noble Nook app. Hamish Macbeth is a policeman in a small village in the Highlands. He likes it and doesn’t want to be promoted to a larger town. So he doesn’t mind when his “boss” takes credit for his work. Hamish also seems to have problems with making commitments to girlfriends, which figures into this story. Someone is writing “poison pen” letters and sending them to various folks. This is a nuisance until the Postmistress is found hung with a letter at her feet. Her death is initially ruled a suicide, but Hamish finds evidence of murder. A few days later, another woman is murdered with another note. And a video of the first death shows up at movie night at the Senior Center. Hamish must unravel the secrets of the village while dealing with some unwelcome (sort of) female attention. This is one of the middle books in a series, so there is a lot of backstory that is not explained. But the book is enjoyable anyone, although I thought the resolution was a bit rushed.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Thalia

    A little more than halfway through, I am...not sure. So far this is a fast-paced mystery, and I certainly want to find out whodunnit, but the writing is not totally up my alley. I'll certainly stick with it though, and may find others as quick mystery reads. I think I like more descriptive writing, even if it slightly slows down the pace. Ah well. After finishing, and reading the first in the series, I am even more disappointed in the choppiness of the writing. I will be trying the series again, A little more than halfway through, I am...not sure. So far this is a fast-paced mystery, and I certainly want to find out whodunnit, but the writing is not totally up my alley. I'll certainly stick with it though, and may find others as quick mystery reads. I think I like more descriptive writing, even if it slightly slows down the pace. Ah well. After finishing, and reading the first in the series, I am even more disappointed in the choppiness of the writing. I will be trying the series again, but this one seemed so stripped-down, and the character of Jenny was so irritating...I don't know.

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