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Publisher's Summary

In the isolated villages in the north of Scotland, the villagers rely on the services of the chimney sweep, Pete Ray, and his old-fashioned brushes. Pete is always able to find work in the Scottish highlands, until the day that Police Constable Hamish Macbeth notices blood dripping onto the floor of a villager's fireplace, and a dead body stuffed inside the chimney. The entire town of Lochdubh is certain Pete is the culprit, but Hamish doesn't believe that the affable chimney sweep is capable of committing murder. Then Pete's body is found on the Scottish moors, and the mystery deepens. It's up to Hamish to discover who's responsible for the dirty deed--and this time, the murderer may be closer than he realizes.

©2011 Marion Chesney (P)2011 AudioGo

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

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Story

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  • Susan
  • Amery, WI, United States
  • 11-06-11

Hamish, Anderson and Blair -- As Usual

I enjoy the books that M. C. Beaton writes. The Hamish Macbeth books (as well as the Agatha Raisin books) all follow a sort of "formula." For Hamish, Blair kicks him off the case immediately, Priscilla Halburton-Smythe and/or Elspeth Grant show up to complicate things romantically but also help solve the mystery, Jimmy Anderson wants whiskey in return for information of how the investigation is going, Sonzy and Lugs follow Hamish and try to mooch food around Lochdubh, and the crazy residents of this often dreary (weather-wise) Highland village add comic relief, and lots of possible suspects, though this time Hamish focuses in rather quickly on a set of possibilities, etc.
Fluffy, fun reads. Not great writing of "literature" level -- but pleasant, quick read. It's easier to forget the whodunit-culprit than with an Agatha Christie novel, so I often relisten to the Hamish Macbeth stories after about a year.
Some reviewers may claim Hamish is lazy or bumbling. He is neither. He isn't lazy. He just likes his life too much to let anything change it -- especially any kind of promotion that would move him out of the village police station or force him to get rid of his beloved pets.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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Good but a lot of dead people

I enjoyed this story. The descriptions of the Scottish Highlands make the book enjoyable for me, and I found the characters in this particular story interesting and fairly well developed. This is a book in a series, so you might want to begin with the first one rather than jumping in with this one as I did. One thing: there are a lot of murders in this book, and some of them seem unnecessary to me. The ending is a little pat with regard to the murderer specifically, but extra time is taken to wind down the other plot lines, and I appreciated that. Fine narration.

4 of 5 people found this review helpful

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great story, loved the narrator

Nice murder mystery, the end was quite satisfying. It is nice to read a book where the author actually writes an ending! Loved the narrator, did a great job (as far as I could tell) with the different Scottish accents.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • deborah
  • Palm Coast, FL, United States
  • 08-03-11

Hamish MacBeth

Only listen to MC Beaton's Hamish Macbeth's audiobooks when they are narrated by Graeme Malcolm. Davina Porter totally butchers his character.

5 of 6 people found this review helpful

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  • Sylvia
  • CULLMAN, AL, United States
  • 07-22-15

One of the most exciting Hamish Macbeths yet!!!

There is a really terrible villain in this volume! He keeps turning up, creating mayhem. There are also lessons in friendship and in the value of self-assertiveness. A very interesting and hair-raising story for so many reasons! I couldn't stop listening! Oh, and everyone gets what they deserve by the end of the book. Quite satisfying!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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A clean & easy murder mystery with local color.

Would you listen to Death of a Chimney Sweep again? Why?

Yes, after awhile I may listen again. It is only 5 hours, pleasant narrator voice, & set in the Scottish Highlands.

What did you like best about this story?

It was a good story told without gore or heavy sex. It is set in one of my favorite regions (Scottish Highlands) & peopled with clever villagers & Police Constable Hamish Macbeth.

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

Malcolm is a great voice for Hamish Macbeth and manages the different accents and genders as a pro.

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

In several places I did laugh out loud. The book evokes pleasant memories of traveling in Scotland.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Sleepy Town Murders

Would you consider the audio edition of Death of a Chimney Sweep to be better than the print version?

I haven't read the book, only listened to the audio version. I don't know that it's any better, per se, but the story is certainly enhanced by a good narrator. The narrator for this story was a perfect choice!

What did you like best about this story?

The story has many twists and unexpected turns. While the story is mainly based on rather grim murders, I found several occasions to laugh out loud. It was a wonderful listen.

Which scene was your favorite?

One of my favorite scenes is when one of the old twin sisters' calmly take care of an intruder. This was one of the parts that made me laugh.

Any additional comments?

Anyone who enjoys audio books, especially one read by a very talented narrator, will find themselves lost in this story....if you listen while you're walking, you'll go another turn or two around the park just to find out what happens next. I recommend this audio book.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Leslie
  • Germantown, TN, United States
  • 03-27-11

Something is up with this book. . .

The Hamish MacBeth series is one of my favorites, but this book is a Hamish MacBeth mystery inside a comment (or perhaps, a fit?) by MC Beaton, I guess about publishing today. It seems to have a murder and some kind of non-lethal accident or crime in each chapter! By the end it's almost tongue-in-cheek humor. Odd.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Another great Hamish story

Another great Hamish story & it was narrated by Graeme Malcolm who fits the character better than Davina Porter except he did not sound as Scottish in this one. Why? That is part of the charm of the audio books vs. Reading.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Loads of good writing. Very satisfying

Nice pace, good story, excellent narration.
Loads of fun and a good murder to boot. 😀

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