Barbara’s rating: 3.5/4 of 5 stars
Series: Hamish Macbeth #33
Publication Date: 2/20/18
I have read all thirty-three of the Hamish Macbeth books and I always love to visit the Scottish Highlands and the tiny village of Lochdubh, located in the northwest of Scotland. It is fun to see what is going on at Tommel Castle Hotel, and the vile village of Cnothan. Then, there is always the adventure of seeing how many side-kicks Hamish will go through – and I think this one wins with four. Sadly though, I have been disappointed in books thirty-two and thirty-three – they have become a bit dull and formulaic. I’m sure the author has written so many by now that she could almost write them in her sleep. Maybe that will change with the next book because apparently Blair will be gone and Hamish’s latest side-kick is a tall, nice looking young lady copper. If you are new to the series, you probably aren’t tired of Priscilla, Blair, Jimmy, Elspeth and even Hamish – but – if you’ve read from the first, they are probably getting a bit tiresome. I will try one more book to see what happens with the addition of Constable Dorothy McIver as Hamish’s new side-kick and also the addition of Johnny Southern because he sounds like he could be a new Blair. Hamish has also gotten Sonsie back from Ardnamurchan and it will be interesting to see how that goes.
Paul English is a retired banker who has moved to Cnothan. It doesn’t take long for him to alienate the entire population of Hamish’s territory. The man prides himself on being honest, but he is really judgmental, cruel and insulting. Is it any surprise that he turns up dead – in the bog? Not at all.
There are lots of suspects, so how will Hamish manage to track down the murderer – and not take credit for it. That is always a challenge for poor Hamish. He has a fine mind as a detective, but he doesn’t want to take credit for his solutions because he doesn’t want to be promoted out of his beloved village. As Hamish digs deeper, he finds there is more to some of the relationships in the area than you’d suspect.
Hamish is a very busy man – people are dying and being injured right and left and he has to solve the case and keep Blair off his back. When the solution finally presents itself, you’ll be surprised at how the end happens.
M. C. Beaton writes well, plots well and creates interesting characters. Her books are very, very busy though and sometimes you have to work a little to keep all of the side stories straight.
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