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Death of a Village    by M. C. Beaton order for
Death of a Village
by M. C. Beaton
Order:  USA  Can
Warner, 2003 (2003)

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* * *   Reviewed by Mary Ann Smyth

Police Constable Hamish MacBeth is at it again, in the village of Lockdubh in the Scottish Highlands. Hamish manages to solve murders, uncover insurance fraud, and untangle the reason for religious fervor in a remote village, while fending off a well-deserved but unwanted promotion. Hamish is not lazy. He simply likes Lockdubh and doesn't want to leave it.

The wee villages, the tracks of blooming heather, the wild coastline with its harsh weather, the Scots brogue of the wonderful characters who populate Beaton's books - bring all of this to life by turning to the first page of her latest mystery. Reacquaint yourself in it with Hamish and all the charmingly eccentric inhabitants of Lockdubh.

Hamish still carries a torch for an old girlfriend, who is soon to marry someone else. Local reporter Elspeth and Hamish rub each other the wrong way, but could this be a new love interest? Lugs, Hamish's dog with the strange blue eyes, voices his jealous displeasure at the mere sight of Elspeth.

Hamish stories are always a delight and Death of a Village is no exception. By my count, this is the eighteenth in this engaging series (I also highly recommend the author's Agatha Raisin mysteries). If this is your first time with a Beaton book, you're in for a treat. It is quickly read and hard to put down. Sheer fun.

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