There’s a newcomer in the Cotswold village of Piddlebury. Gloria French is, at first, welcomed into the village – where new comers aren’t all welcome. Why? Well she seems like the perfect villager. She raises funds for the church and cares for the elderly. She seems to be an outstanding pillar of the village community.
But there is a downside to all her helpful deeds. For Gloria French has a nasty habit of ‘borrowing’ things and not returning them by claiming they were her’s in the first place…there are even accusations of downright theft.
So when she is discovered dead, after drinking a poisoned bottle of elderberry wine (which she stole), the people of the village of Piddlebury don’t mourn her passing.
Agatha Raisin isn’t, surprisingly more than happy to leave the police to it on this occasion but when local parish councillor Jerry Tarrant hires Agatha and her team to find the murderer, it’s an offer she can’t refuse.
However, the village is more tight knit than even Agatha was expecting with everyone keeping secrets and are more than happy to let the murderer remain free, Agatha finds this investigation more of a struggle than most. With more murders (and attempted murders!), Agatha must use every available opportunity and trust of gut instinct to help her with this one…before the murderer gets her too.
There was a quote I absolutely adore from this book and it comes from Mr James Lacey;
“If you expect nothing from anybody you could wake up one day and find yourself in the middle of a genuine and splendid romance.”
It reminds me of when people tell you not to look for love because you’ll never find it. It also suits a belief of mine to not expect anything from anyone – that way you won’t be disappointed.
I’ve reviewed all of the Agatha Raisin books that I own (although if I get more then of course I shall review those too), but for the time being let’s reflect on what Agatha brings.
Agatha is ruthless and cunning – a Miss Marple type character with a drinking problem, a smoking addiction and always on the lookout for a good looking man. She has many mishaps and sometimes has the wrong approach to situations but she always comes out on top…much to the police force’s displeasure.
M.C. Beaton has a way with Agatha…a way that makes you feel like you’re returning to old friends. There’s always mysteries and puzzles, but there’s so much more depth to the stories. From love, lust and unrequited love to the comedy of errors, you can’t not laugh!
I love these books! I hope I come across more in the future!