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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars NOT VINTAGE, BUT ENJOYABLE
No hanging around here. By page 10 two are dead and Hamish suspended. Good riddance to unscrupulous con artist Captain Davenport, found stuffed up a chimney. Shame about humble sweep Peter Ray - wrong place, wrong time.

Ahead lies a little more than normal of everything. The case takes longer to solve (though fewer pages), more places are involved, the body...
Published on 4 Aug. 2011 by Mr. D. L. Rees

versus
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Hamish and the many suspects
I usually enjoy M.C. Beaton's work but this outing failed to impress though things start promisingly enough. In particular, the four main suspects (and their wives) weren't well enough described to hold much interest and the coupling of a silly plot with a violent series of crimes often meant for unpleasant going.

I'm a fan of cosy mysteries and I missed the...
Published on 16 July 2011 by T. Bently


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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Hamish and the many suspects, 16 July 2011
By 
T. Bently "tbently" (Berkshire, England) - See all my reviews
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I usually enjoy M.C. Beaton's work but this outing failed to impress though things start promisingly enough. In particular, the four main suspects (and their wives) weren't well enough described to hold much interest and the coupling of a silly plot with a violent series of crimes often meant for unpleasant going.

I'm a fan of cosy mysteries and I missed the usual warmth and humour of the Lochdubh community here, although readers used to more hard-boiled writing probably won't find too much awry.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Too much gore, preferred the mixture as before, 23 Feb. 2012
Lochdubh has always been a good place to get murdered, but in the good old days the murders were kept within bounds and the story was confined to the local community, with an attractive, authentic Highland setting and a rich set of characters.

This story is different. The violence is intense and indiscriminate, the worldwide setting feeble, the plot unbelievable, and some of the incidents read like a bad imitation of a James Bond novel, without the glamour.

Maybe it's time to pension off Hamish & Co. If this book is anything to go by, the seam is worked out. I say this with regret because I've loved the series so far, but I definitely don't like the direction this book takes it.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Mis-named and badly written, 21 Mar. 2012
The death of the sweep of the title happened - and was finished with - in Chapter 1. The rest of the book is a confusion of three or four subplots, mostly totally unbelievable. We travel the world and what made most of the series enjoyable - Lochdubh and its characters - are left behind. I will not be buying any further Hamish Macbeth books.
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Lots of Quick-Moving Plot, Little Character, and Even Less Charm, 17 April 2011
By 
Donald Mitchell "Jesus Loves You!" (Thanks for Providing My Reviews over 127,000 Helpful Votes Globally) - See all my reviews
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"And I looked, and behold, you had sinned against the LORD your God--had made for yourselves a molded calf! You had turned aside quickly from the way which the LORD had commanded you." -- Deuteronomy 9:16 (NKJV)

Your opinion of Death of a Chimney Sweep will depend on what attracts you to the Hamish Macbeth series. Those who will like it best are those who want more of a crime story and plot to follow. Those who will like it least are those who love the way Hamish's laziness and love of the Highlands keeps him away from promotion.

Well, that's certainly a lot more crime than usual in this book . . . but I didn't find the story details to be very satisfying. It's sort of over-the-top in the story development and solutions.

My favorite characters were sort of there in passing rather than building up an important role for them. Charm was almost totally missing.

The book read so differently from other stories in the series that I wondered if M.C. Beaton has taken on an unacknowledged collaborator who lacks her talent for cozy mysteries.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars As you might expect..., 24 Jun. 2012
By 
L. Burgoyne (Scotland) - See all my reviews
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I enjoy reading the Hamish Macbeth mysteries - as another reviewer has said, they are cosy. Coming from Scotland I enjoy the local nuances and language, however this also creates many of its problems. The Scottishisms are clichéd and Beaton uses the same awful ones over and over again (the sibilance coming into Hamish's voice immediately springs to mind). The characterisation of Scottish people is often very accurate, but the wee bits of 'flavour' which may have been amusing in the first 10 books have started making me cringe.

The actual stories have never been particularly well written - certainly not clever, but comfortable, enjoyable easy-reading. This one was slightly poorer than others and I was less interested in the case. I'm also revolted that it came out months earlier in America than in Britain, simply for the reason that it appeals so highly to the sort of people Beaton derides in the books (tweedy Englishmen venturing to Scotland because they think its quaint, dreamy etc.)

If you have read and enjoyed all the other Macbeths then you may find this quite enjoyable, but they are certainly on the decline....
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars NOT VINTAGE, BUT ENJOYABLE, 4 Aug. 2011
By 
Mr. D. L. Rees "LEE DAVID" (DORSET) - See all my reviews
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No hanging around here. By page 10 two are dead and Hamish suspended. Good riddance to unscrupulous con artist Captain Davenport, found stuffed up a chimney. Shame about humble sweep Peter Ray - wrong place, wrong time.

Ahead lies a little more than normal of everything. The case takes longer to solve (though fewer pages), more places are involved, the body count higher.

Locally based chapters remain the main attraction, Hamish literally in his element. Always uplifting is the thought of him going about his duties, often accompanied by his two pets - a wild cat called Sonsie and Lugs the dog with ears like Dumbo. Then there are the familiar residents, by now regarded by many faithful readers as friends.

Less happy perhaps are some of the scenes elsewhere - especially when Hamish, not for the first time, is breaking into property or disguised.

Addicts (I one, having read 22 of the 26 books) will find much to enjoy, but some may feel uneasy about the direction taken in later chapters. They seem a little out of control, almost as though improvised whilst being written. (Humble apologies to M.C. Beaton if they had in fact been carefully planned.)

It feels a betrayal to carp when the long running series gives so much pleasure! DCI Blair may seem well past his sell-by date and the villains may not exactly convince, but Hamish himself remains a joy. One warms to the maverick policeman ever showing compassion, he so adept at looking the other way if discretion is required and no good can result. He serves Lochdubh and surrounding villages well, as indeed he does the reader.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars A waste of reading time, 4 Feb. 2014
This review is from: Death of a Sweep (Hamish Macbeth) (Paperback)
I have all the Hamish books... And agatha raisin series ... and I have noticed that the latest books in both series are not a patch on the former ones. I think MC Beaton must be losing her touch. The death of a sweep was wishy washy, rambling, badly written and boring. The characters were lifeless. The setting was hardly worthy of a few sentences as the plot jumped from place to place but hardly in the village. I wanted to shake the main character and Macbeth. I vowed I would not buy another macbeth after the last one, but I did, my mistake. I wish I hadn't.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars good read, 8 Oct. 2011
By 
Mrs. D. Akllwright (Suffolk, England) - See all my reviews
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this is another wonderful story by m c beaton, strongly written, good story line, and great fun to read, recommend the whole series to anyone who likes mild mannered detective stories, by a good writer
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Silly, 15 Jan. 2014
By 
Elaine Tomasso (Troon. Uk) - See all my reviews
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The sweep in question is rather incidental as his murder is a by product (wrong time, wrong place) of the murder of a conman ex-army captain. This leads on to an outlandish revenge spree and some serious law breaking by Hamish. This is still a good read but having read all the other books I didn't like how delinquent Hamish was in this book.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Oh dear..., 30 Aug. 2013
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I have lots of M C Beaton's Hamish Macbeth books, (and Agatha Raisin). The prose style can sometimes be irritatingly staccato, with several very short sentences following each other instead of the words flowing smoothly along. The plot of Death of a Sweep is very disappointing. The sweep himself is almost irrelevant. Death of a Conman would have been more apppropriate. Hamish's actions throughout are simply not credible, and the actions of the criminals flitting around on false passports with fake credit cards dumping corpses all over the place are just plain silly. This one has rather put me off buying any more, which is a shame, because I am fond of Hamish.
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Death of a Sweep (Hamish Macbeth)
Death of a Sweep (Hamish Macbeth) by M.C. Beaton (Paperback - 17 Oct. 2013)
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