Penelope Keith - who starred as Agatha Raisin in the popular BBC Radio 4 series - reads M. C. Beaton's entertaining murder mystery. Incomer Gloria French is at first welcomed in the Cotswold village of Piddlebury. She seems like a do-gooder par excellence, raising funds for the church and caring for the elderly. But she has a bad habit of borrowing things and not giving them back, so when she is discovered dead, poisoned by a bottle of elderberry wine, folk in the village don't mourn her passing too intently.
Parish councillor Jerry Tarrant hires Agatha Raisin to track down the murderer. But the village is creepy and secretive and the residents don't seem to want Agatha to succeed. Plus, Agatha's investigations are hampered by the emotional upset of finding her ex, James Lacey, has fallen in love with young detective Toni Gilmour. And now the murderer is targeting Agatha...
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"Not the old Aggie we know"
Having put up with some fairly lack luster plots and characters in recent Agatha Raisin novels, I had convinced myself that this new release would see the formidable caustic amateur sleuth back to her best in another 'whodunnit' that provides wit and charm, in what is M.C.Beatons, brilliant style. This was not the case, and what I found was a book that it s hard to believe is written only by the author herself. There are flashes of the original Agatha, but then a few pages later the reader finds themselves reading about an Agatha who is a pale comparison of her former fiesty self. I accept that a character as well established as Agatha, may be difficult to sustain, but this book reads more as an allegory to a supporting cast of characters than to the exploits of the heroin herself. For a seasoned reader it will be another instalment in the series, not the best and it certainly will leave you wondering whether Agatha needs a shot of adrenalin and a better editor, for new readers this will leave you wondering what the fuss was all about. Read it without expectation and it will be worth it, but only out of a sense of nostalgia for the old Aggie
"Light to read"
Having read all of the Agatha Raisin stories this is the last one at the moment.Yes I would recommend as a light read.
They are all a bit much the same with a diffrent plot.But I like them because they are fun to read.Agatha reminds me of Val Pollard in Emmerdale,
I started with the first book and have now finished the last although I listened to last one and I read the others.Waiting for the next.Great to listen to at the gym.
"Plot lines get more ridiculous"
Lack of depth, too too far fetched
Go back to more thought out stories, stop churning them out
Haven't listened to any others. She is great for these books though.
Penelope Keith's narration was superb, making each character her own. The story itself was funny and really captured the foilbles of human nature as well the virtues. The book also has an easy listening plot. I really didn't want to stop listening.
Just loved the atmosphere that was created by the inhabitants of Piddlebury (hope that's the right spelling) Village. Also love Sir Charles's attitude to Agatha, just wish I knew how he really felt about her, they are so well suited. M C Beaton has managed to keep us guessing for quite a while now!
Very hard to choose but Sir Charles, Mrs Blocksby and of course Agatha herself.
Often laughed out loud!!
These Agatha Raisin books just would not be the same for me if not narrated by Penelope Keith. She really has made the characters almost real to me and to hear a different rendition would not be the same at all.
"Agatha gets better & better"
I definitely would . I prefered the last 5 Agatha Raisin storied including this one because of the developments involving another character - Toni Gilmore
Finding out who the murderer was and what happened just before it
I have listened to ALL her other readings of Agatha Raisin books and thoroughly enjoyed them
I was suprised that the story continued unexpectedly after I thought it had ended . Agatha's antics as per usual made me laugh out loud
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