When I 1st started the series, I could not get enough of them. Now though, the recurring characters need to grow up, expand their horizons and do something with their lives. Every now and then I take a break from both series - Agatha Raisin and Hamish Macbeth, and now I know why. But then like a junkie, I go back for a fix every now and then. There are so many pages of nonsensical travelling between places which never get the lead characters anywhere, tis ridiculous. They only serve to add pages to the book. After the murderer is found, the book gets stretched out by an unnecessary epilogue that involves more detective work by Ms. Raisin. 2.5*.
Something Borrowed, Something Blue --- by --- M. C. Beaton. One might be forgiven for thinking that MC set this novel sometime in the sepiad past when the world was much simpler, much kinder. But then she jerks us into the present: there are cell, er, mobile phones, gin and tonics, and fast cars. The main protagonist in this Agatha Raisin Mystery is, as you might surmise, Agatha Raisin, a private investigator in a small Cotswolds town where she regularly out-sleuths the local police force to solve the most peculiar of crimes that can only be described as being in the most time-honoured traditions of English skullduggery: murder by poisoning with doped elderberry cordial. Who did it? The vicar perhaps? Ancient Mrs Tripp who always corralled people to read to her and who then promptly fell asleep? Or maybe it was the odd Mr. Sumner who always took long walks in the woods? There are plenty of suspects in this tale of intrigue that has more twists and turns than a corniche in Monaco. A novel, alack too brief, yet thoroughly enjoyable.
The crazy thing is, neither Agatha nor many of her friends are exactly likeable, what with their selfishn and stupid habits, and yet after so many books, you do.
There are so many of the same underlying jokes and themes that weave throughout the series in book after book, and that’s exactly why I find them so charming. It’s reassuring to know that Agatha is still fascinated by James, Charles and Roy still pop in and out at random, and the crew at the agency hasn’t changed at all. It’s all the same, but Beaton’s style never seems to get old.
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