After six grueling months back in London, Agatha Raisin returns to her beloved Cotswold village of Carsely - and to the charms of her neighbor, James Lacey. True, James is less than thrilled to see her, but Agatha is soon distracted by a sensational murder. The victim, hiker Jessica Tartinck, spent her life enraging wealthy landowners by insisting on her walking club’s right to hike over their properties. Now she has been found dead....
©1994, 2005 M. C. Beaton. All rights reserved. (P)2012 AudioGO
Avid listener on my daily commute!
This series, and especially this book, is a good listen for any time you just want something on that you don't have to think or care too much about. Agatha Raisin is a prickly, unpleasant antiheroine, but that's part of the draw of the series. She's unique, and uniquely endearing. Her very British village is picturesque, her part-time London career exciting, her middle-aged waistline realistically thickening, her love life realistically mostly non-existent, her pub meals realistically overcooked and tasteless. Penelope Keith is an able, lively and entertaining narrator who makes very few voicing mistakes.
Now for the bad news: M.C. Beaton, after taking care to ensure that the first volume (Agatha Raisin and the Quiche of Death, which I highly recommend) was carefully written, detailed, suspenseful and top-notch, seems to have subsequently either lost steam or become so impatient to earn money quickly that she began dashing these sequels off like hotcakes off the griddle. This one is plotted so carelessly that mild-mannered, cautious characters (not just Agatha herself) say impetuous things that their characters would never say, do impulsive things that their characters would never do, and even commit murder in more or less the same way they did in the previous book (Potted Gardener). Not only that, but plot holes abound. Toward the end, for example, when James Lacey (Agatha's new partner in private detection) announces, "So, it was [Character X]!" I actually rewound the recording twice just to see how on earth I had missed his seeing the body of Character Y on the floor, the only sight he could have seen that would have led him to that conclusion. He never had seen it. The author had forgotten to make him see it.
I'm not sure I'll be spending a credit on volume 5.
Grade: C. Bechdel test: Pass.
Retired CFO, Army wife, Mom of five, Grandma of six, two sons who served in combat, love to read books that reflect my values and faith, love mysteries, historical, military stories, and books that don't waste my time . . . if it doesn't have an ending that was worth the wait, I'm not a happy camper.
Book Four in the series finds Agatha back home in Carsley after a grueling six month stint in London on a PR job . . . ready to settle in with her cats and the calm life in the Cotswolds, Agatha reintegrates with her friends, including her next door neighbor, James . . . whom she has the hots for . . . but no sooner than Agatha gets home, one of the Walkers of Dembley, Jessica Tartinck, is found murdered . . . once again sending Agatha and James on the search for the killer . . . as James and Agatha become walkers to find out just what this group is really up to, things begin to HEAT up . . . in more ways than one . . . I am TOTALLY hooked on Agatha and this series . . . which, by the way, is PG-13 . . . but since I'm well over 60, I'm allowed . . . lol . . . great resolution and fun, fun, fun ending . . .
Penelope Keith's reading is wonderful - I'm sad to see that the next few books in the series aren't currently available! I will skip ahead to what is available, but it's a shame. This is a great entry in the Agatha Raisin saga, it introduces Sir Charles for one thing, and it forces Agatha and James to spend a lot of time together - with fewer disasters than you'd expect.
I am someone who enjoys audible books very much now that they exist. As a young student (real young) I can remember a teacher telling me how books can transport people to different places & open up a whole new world. This is how listening to audible books make me feel. Now if I can just stop falling asleep while listening to them at night I would be fine. Ha ha
I find myself busting out in laughter. Just love the narrator PK. And the author keeps me interested to the point i stay up most of the night listening to the series. Oh well. That is the price of listening to a great series & very affordable too.
Sara A :)
I purchased the Agatha Raisin books on my mother's recommendation. The narrator Penelope Keith is wonderful and makes the characters in the book entertaining. Agatha is an independant older woman who is always getting into mischief and embarrasing herself while trying to solve mysteries. I laughed out loud! Great series! I wish Audible had the whole series.
I'm open to any book as long as it is true to itself.
I really enjoyed this one it was a good mystery, and I enjoyed the relationship with James Lacey. Just good all round bit of fun.
This book was yet another fascinating story by the talented M.C. Beaton. Enjoyed every minute of it. Penelope Keith , once again, made listening to this delightful story an absolute pleasure. She can actually bring each character to life like no other narrator. She's brilliant!
Old, tired member of the sandwich generation. Waiting to just get to heaven!!
The Agatha books are quickly becoming my "go to" books when I don't know what to read next. She should really have more confidence in herself and should go forth without tricks. She needs to wash her hands of James Lacy and move on!
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