Death of a Witch (Hamish Macbeth Series #24)

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Overview

Returning from a foreign holiday, Hamish Macbeth is worried because he senses a dark cloud of evil hanging over the Highland village of Lochdubh. He learns that a newcomer, Catriona Beldame, is regarded as a witch and various men have been seen visiting her. Hamish himself is charmed by her until he finds out she has been supplying dangerous potions. At first the villagers won't listen to him, saying that the loveless Hamish has turned against all women. He threatens to kill her so that when she is found ...

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Death of a Witch (Hamish Macbeth Series #24)

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Overview

Returning from a foreign holiday, Hamish Macbeth is worried because he senses a dark cloud of evil hanging over the Highland village of Lochdubh. He learns that a newcomer, Catriona Beldame, is regarded as a witch and various men have been seen visiting her. Hamish himself is charmed by her until he finds out she has been supplying dangerous potions. At first the villagers won't listen to him, saying that the loveless Hamish has turned against all women. He threatens to kill her so that when she is found murdered, he must clear his name and then work to solve yet another murder to bring peace and quiet back to his beloved village. His investigations are complicated by a romance with a female forensic expert. Perhaps he'll get married at last!

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Editorial Reviews

<b>New York Times Book Review</b>
Praise for M.C. Beaton and the Hamish Macbeth series:
"It's always a pleasure to return to Lochdubh, the picturesque village in the Scottish highlands."
Publishers Weekly

In bestseller Beaton's devilishly droll 24th mystery to feature police constable Hamish Macbeth (after 2008's Death of a Gentle Lady), the Scottish Highlands' most stubborn (and romantically challenged) bachelor returns to his home village of Lochdubh from a disappointing vacation to discover a witch stirring up trouble. To Macbeth's annoyance, the sex-starved local men have fallen under the spell of Catriona Beldame, who turns out to be a runaway bride with a shady past. Macbeth longs to prove she's selling illegal (and bogus) remedies for sexual dysfunction, and warns her to stop if she is. Macbeth gets a shock when someone murders Beldame and sets her house on fire-soon after Macbeth is overheard to say he'd like to kill her. Three more murders of other women quickly follow. Could a serial killer be loose in sleepy Lochdubh? As usual, Beaton's crisp plotting and effervescent humor complement Macbeth's deft crime solving. (Dec.)

Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Kirkus Reviews
The picture-postcard village of Lochdubh once more becomes a mecca for murder. Police Constable Hamish Macbeth (Death of a Gentle Lady, 2008, etc.) returns from a disappointing holiday in Spain to discover his beloved Highland village sunk in a miasma apparently caused by newcomer Catriona Beldame, dispenser of herbal potions and suspected witch. Fighting an unwanted attraction to Catriona, Hamish is furious when the local doctor tells him that she's been dispensing Spanish fly to many of the town's menfolk, and even threatens her when she won't heed his warning to stop. After Hamish discovers Catriona stabbed to death, her house goes up in smoke while he's waiting outside for the forensics team. The newest member of the team, smitten by him, joins the long line of women who want to further his career, not knowing that Hamish constantly weasels out of promotions in order to stay in his beloved Lochdubh, where he's now officially a murder suspect. As the bodies pile up, Hamish gets help from another of his ex-loves, reporter Elspeth Grant. Hoping against hope the murderer is not one of his villagers, he learns a lot more than he wants to know about the sex lives of the residents before he can figure out who's been on a killing spree. A sound mystery featuring a generous portion of Hamish's complicated relationships and the usual delightful Highland descriptions. Agent: Barbara Lowenstein/Lowenstein-Yost
New York Times Book Review
Praise for M.C. Beaton and the Hamish Macbeth series:
"It's always a pleasure to return to Lochdubh, the picturesque village in the Scottish highlands."
From the Publisher
Praise for M.C. Beaton and the Hamish Macbeth series:
"It's always a pleasure to return to Lochdubh, the picturesque village in the Scottish highlands."—New York Times Book Review

"Superb entertainment, as rich and warming as a fine malt whisky, and every bit as addictive."—Houston Chronicle

"Macbeth is the sort of charcter who slyly grows on you...as you realize that beneath his unassuming exterior, he's a whiz at cutting through all the hokum."—Chicago Sun-Times

Chicago Sun-Times
"Macbeth is the sort of charcter who slyly grows on you...as you realize that beneath his unassuming exterior, he's a whiz at cutting through all the hokum."
Houston Chronicle
"Superb entertainment, as rich and warming as a fine malt whisky, and every bit as addictive."
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780446196130
  • Publisher: Grand Central Publishing
  • Publication date: 2/24/2009
  • Series: Hamish Macbeth Series , #24
  • Pages: 256
  • Product dimensions: 5.70 (w) x 8.40 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

M.C. Beaton lives in the Cotswolds with her husband. In addition to the Hamish Macbeth series, she writes the Agatha Raisin mystery series.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 28 )
Rating Distribution

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(7)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 28 Customer Reviews
  • Posted April 19, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Enjoyable Series Does Not Disappoint!

    I've been reading this series about murder and mayhem in the Scottish Highlands for years, and I always look forward to the newest one. It's comforting to return to all the familiar characters and settings - not to mention the apparent propensity for murder in and around Lochdubh, the village where Constable Hamish Macbeth resides. This time Hamish is hot on the trail of someone who has murdered several women, including a "witch" who'd created quite a stir in the area. And once again the red-haired sleuth is fending off both promotion (which would require him to leave Lochdubh) and the wiles of several ladies determined to end his bachelorhood.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted May 9, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    First Beaton book for me

    This was the first book by this author for me. I loved it It is a wonderful cozy mystery.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 18, 2009

    "Take a trip to Lochdubh"

    Hamish Macbeth comes back from vacation to find that there is a "witch" in town. The men flock to her. What is the witch doing to attract the men? Then, she and another woman are murdered. Are the murders connected?
    This is the first M.C. Beaton book I have read. It took me a few pages to get connect to Hamish. The characters are full of quirks, and the dialogue is in Highland Brogue. I have to admit that the author made me long to go to Scotland to the point that I googled the country.
    My overall description of this book is that it is a one-of-a-kind mystery. It is a fast read. It does not get bogged down in the details like so many other mysteries do. If you want a light mystery, this is a great book for you.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted March 2, 2009

    Hamish Macbeth strikes again.

    This was a very fast read. Once I started I couldn't hardly put it down! I'm really hooked on the Hamish Macbeth series of books by M.C. Beaton. I'm glad I didn't wait for it to come out in paperback!!

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted November 30, 2008

    more from this reviewer

    a terrific whodunit

    Death of a Witch<BR/>M.C. Beaton<BR/>Grand Central, Feb 2009, $24.99<BR/>ISBN: 0446196134<BR/><BR/>After heeding the advice of his friend to go abroad on his vacation, police constable Hamish Macbeth returns from a cheap off season holiday in Spain to his home village Lochdubhof in the Scottish Highlands. All he can think of is breathing Scotland¿s air after a boring disappointing trip to the southern part of the Iberian Peninsular.<BR/><BR/>However, in his short time as a stranger in a strange land, Macbeth finds the village males acting even stupider than normal, which in the cop¿s mind would have been impossible as stupid male is an oxymoron. Newcomer Catriona Beldame seems to own the men as if she cast a bewitching spell on them. She sells them elixirs that she claims cure all sorts of sexual malfunctions. Macbeth learns of her dishonest past and warns her if she is peddling illegal concoctions he will get her. Just after Macbeth foolishly in public proclaims he wants to kill the flimflam con artist someone takes his threat to heart killing Beldame and burning down her residence. Knowing Inspector Blair will gleefully make him a prime suspect, Macbeth investigates, but is taken aback by the murders of three more women and a female not under investigation who has him distracted with thoughts of a kiss.<BR/><BR/>The latest Macbeth police procedural (see DEATH OF A GENTLE LADY) is a terrific whodunit as the hero will shock his fans with the key relationship question to ask or not to ask as Hamish meets women who are not suspects. Filled with the usual humor, DEATH OF A WITCH is a delightful Scottish charmer that works on the investigative level as much as on the personal level. M.C. Beaton provides her usual superior tale with the king of obstinacy Macbeth diligently working a homicide while pondering the foreign concept of romantic thoughts.<BR/><BR/>Harriet Klausner

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 6, 2013

    Recommended

    M. C. Beaton always puts out a good read. I love the way the small backwoods policeman can always outthink the superiors and solve the case. The superiors always get the credit for solving the case when they know that Hamish Mcbeth and his animals have figured it out.

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  • Posted April 28, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    Cute

    The backdrop for the story is quaint, but the story itself was a disappointment. Character development, especially the main character, was spotty.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 20, 2009

    Another Beaton success

    MC Beaton just never disappoints the reader! Death of a Witch keeps you reading well into the night. Worth every minute (and every penney).

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 28 Customer Reviews

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