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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.