Death of a Kingfisher: A Hamish Macbeth Mystery Audiobook | M. C. Beaton | Audible.com
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Death of a Kingfisher: A Hamish Macbeth Mystery | [M. C. Beaton]

Death of a Kingfisher: A Hamish Macbeth Mystery

When Scotland is hit by the recession, Police Constable Hamish Macbeth notices that the Highland people are forced to come up with inventive ways to lure tourists to their sleepy towns. The quaint village of Braikie doesn't have much to offer, other than a place of rare beauty called Buchan's Wood, which was bequeathed to the town. The savvy local tourist director renames the woods "The Fairy Glen," and has brochures printed with a beautiful photograph of a kingfisher rising from a pond on the cover. It isn't long before coach tours begin to arrive.
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Publisher's Summary

When Scotland is hit by the recession, Police Constable Hamish Macbeth notices that the Highland people are forced to come up with inventive ways to lure tourists to their sleepy towns. The quaint village of Braikie doesn't have much to offer, other than a place of rare beauty called Buchan's Wood, which was bequeathed to the town. The savvy local tourist director renames the woods "The Fairy Glen," and has brochures printed with a beautiful photograph of a kingfisher rising from a pond on the cover. It isn't long before coach tours begin to arrive. But just as the town's luck starts to turn, a kingfisher is found hanging from a branch in the woods with a noose around its neck. As a wave of vandalism threatens to ruin Braikie forever, the town turns to Hamish Macbeth. And when violence strikes again, the lawman's investigation quickly turns from animal cruelty to murder.

©2012 Marion Chesney. All rights reserved. (P)2012 AudioGo

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  •  
    Chablis from Seattle Seattle, WA USA 11-16-12
    Chablis from Seattle Seattle, WA USA 11-16-12 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
    10
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    "A delightful, tangled web of intrigue!"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    This book is delightful, especially for M C Beaton fans, who have learned to suspend disbelief and simply enjoy the odd characters that inhabit Hamish Macbeth's life and the author's amazing imagination. I expect her books to be fraught with plot twists and turns and unusual characters. The humor in this book revolved around the highlanders' belief in fairies, and I howled with laughter when listening to the description of the kingfisher's funeral.


    Did the plot keep you on the edge of your seat? How?

    The plot didn't exactly keep me on the "edge of my seat," but I was certainly fascinated by the crafting of the action and introduction of new characters and their motives. I've read other readers'/listeners' criticism of the personality and actions of the flat, amoral children, but I've seen that facial affect in the televised interviews with children of gang life. (I did think that the European escape was a bit "over-the-top", but I dismiss devices like this as part of M.C. Beaton's charm.) As usual this plot is a mixture of the familiar (Hamish's troubles with his superiors, the village characters, the desire by Macbeth to keep his beloved friends out of the murder investigation) with unusual devices that make the action complicated and interesting (the Russian who wants the nursery property as a site for his mansion). I loved it. I don't require M.C. Beaton to be believable at all times.....how could you possibly believe Nessie and Jessie with their verbal repetition and outlandish accusations about Hamish's love life? But it works.


    What does Graeme Malcolm bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    Malcolm has a sense of timing..pausing between scenes, changing voices in a subtle manner so the listener always knows when the speaker changes, but effecting the change in an unobtrusive manner....no screeching or phlegmy voices. His voices add a sense of continuity and realism to the Scottish brogue.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    I will never forget the hilarity of the kingfisher's funeral.......so funny and outlandish.


    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Nancy United States 04-23-12
    Nancy United States 04-23-12
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Yes."
    If you could sum up Death of a Kingfisher in three words, what would they be?

    Lovely. I love Graeme Malcolm and I enjoy a new story.
    OK The gal is good too but my heart belongs to Graeme...or Hamish.
    One, the other, probably both.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    norman burlington, nc, United States 03-25-12
    norman burlington, nc, United States 03-25-12 Member Since 2011
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    "not believable"
    Any additional comments?

    I've read or listened to all the Hamish novels. The plot, ranging from Russian mafia to an American fundamentalist is too farfetched. Also, the characters of the two children seem unbelievable.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    C. Schmidt Mid-America 03-10-12
    C. Schmidt Mid-America 03-10-12 Member Since 2004
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Not as Good as it Should Be"
    Would you try another book from M. C. Beaton and/or Graeme Malcolm?

    I have read many of M.C. Beaton's books. I am not sure if I would read another Hamish book, though.


    What could M. C. Beaton have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

    This needed a more plausible story line, more deeply developed characters, and less hopelessness.


    What did you like about the performance? What did you dislike?

    The performance is fine but not as good as some of the narrators of earlier books. The accents would often slip and the narrator didn't seem to understand the characters.


    Did Death of a Kingfisher inspire you to do anything?

    No.


    Any additional comments?

    It may be time for M.C. Beaton to quit writing Hamish books, and this book has all the hallmarks of a lead-up to a sendoff. I would anticipate that the next Hamish book has him fading into the sunset in some way, and that would probably be good. The author seems to have stopped liking Hamish and the Highlands. Her stories used to make me want to fly to Inverness immediately and hire a car to drive all around northern Scotland. Now she makes it sound simply drug-ridden, depressed, and dumpy. I don't know if the author is deeply bitter or if she's just lost interest, but if you are a Hamish fan, you might leave off with Death of a Chimney Sweep.

    4 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Linda Anthem, AZ, United States 04-18-12
    Linda Anthem, AZ, United States 04-18-12
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Not up to parr"
    Would you try another book from M. C. Beaton and/or Graeme Malcolm?

    I have read or listened to almost all of Beaton's books - Hamish McBeth and Mrs. Raisin. I liked them all but this one was missing something, besides being unbelievable.

    Also, while the narrator isn't bad and I wouldn't mind him in another book, his performance in this one was a disappointment. For one thing, he was just too British sounding for a story in the Scottish highlands. But he also just didn't capture Hamish's personality.


    Would you listen to another book narrated by Graeme Malcolm?

    I wouldn't listen to another Hamish McBeth book with him. He might be "okay" in other locations.


    Was Death of a Kingfisher worth the listening time?

    It wasn't horrible... I did listen to it.. but I wouldn't be inspired to read another Beaton book if I didn't know her other books were better.


    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Michele Wilmington, NC, United States 09-09-13
    Michele Wilmington, NC, United States 09-09-13 Member Since 2010
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    "Bad language!"

    I would have liked the story if the author could have written it without the use of vile language. I like the narrator.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    janet ANN ARBOR, MI, United States 12-24-12
    janet ANN ARBOR, MI, United States 12-24-12 Member Since 2012
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    "Not the best"
    What did you like best about Death of a Kingfisher? What did you like least?

    I really enjoy the Hamish series in general, this was not very exciting though.


    Would you recommend Death of a Kingfisher to your friends? Why or why not?

    Yes, it's definitely worth a read.


    Have you listened to any of Graeme Malcolm’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    He does a great job.


    Could you see Death of a Kingfisher being made into a movie or a TV series? Who should the stars be?

    No


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Carol Stockton, IL, United States 08-09-12
    Carol Stockton, IL, United States 08-09-12 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Twists and turns a plenty"
    What did you love best about Death of a Kingfisher?

    I'm enchanted with M C Breaton's characters and descriptions of the Scots and the highlands.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Death of a Kingfisher?

    The funeral of the kingfisher


    What about Graeme Malcolm’s performance did you like?

    His voice gives one the feeling of being there & listening in to real people.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    Yes


    Any additional comments?

    My relatives come from Scotland & I can hear and feel them in the characters.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    C. Farmer Lexington, Ky 07-30-12
    C. Farmer Lexington, Ky 07-30-12 Member Since 2009
    HELPFUL VOTES
    2
    ratings
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    "Hamish, a Russian? Really?"
    This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

    I don't know. Someone who doesn't expect a mystery to be remotely believable.


    What was most disappointing about M. C. Beaton’s story?

    Disappointing because I expect a much better story from M. C. Beaton. Is someone else writing for her now?


    Have you listened to any of Graeme Malcolm’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    I enjoy Graeme Malcolm. His voice and what he brings to the story. Unfortunately, even he couldn't make this story believable.


    What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

    Disappointment that Hamish has come to this and anger that I paid money to listen to it. Are there no believable, interesting, nice characters in the Scottish villages Hamish patrols.
    If I were Scottish I wouldn't be happy.


    Any additional comments?

    Come on M. C. Beaton, stop churning them out and write a good one, like you use to. I'm looking forward to the new Agatha Raisin and hope I won't be disappointed.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Richard Maple Park, IL, United States 07-23-12
    Richard Maple Park, IL, United States 07-23-12 Member Since 2001
    HELPFUL VOTES
    54
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    "Not up to snuff"

    I read/listened to -- and enjoyed -- many in this series, and, unfortunately, this is the worst I've found. The story is too complex and too unbelievable. Keep it simple, Harmish....

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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