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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Love it!
This is the second Agatha Raisin novel that I've read, and is also the second in the series. I enjoyed this even more than the first book. I'm growing fond of Agatha despite her grumpiness. Some of the passages in this story really made me laugh. I'm also enjoying getting to know the other characters in the village better.
Published on 10 May 2011 by Kew

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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Raisin Irony
Second in the Agatha Raisin series by Marion Chesney (writing as M.C.Beaton). Agatha, retired PR guru (and she would emphasise that she retired early), returns to her archetypal Cotswold village from an abortive Caribbean holiday to discover a dishy new vet has set up shop there. Perhaps he'll prove an easier catch than James, her nextdoor neighbour. However, life...
Published on 26 Mar 2009 by Budge Burgess


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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Raisin Irony, 26 Mar 2009
By 
Budge Burgess (Troon, Scotland) - See all my reviews
Second in the Agatha Raisin series by Marion Chesney (writing as M.C.Beaton). Agatha, retired PR guru (and she would emphasise that she retired early), returns to her archetypal Cotswold village from an abortive Caribbean holiday to discover a dishy new vet has set up shop there. Perhaps he'll prove an easier catch than James, her nextdoor neighbour. However, life expectancy in the archetypal villages of cosy mysteries can be somewhat abruptly concluded.

Agatha Raisin is an ironic take on Miss Marple - she's less syrupy than Christie's sleuth, more abrasive, and she's decidedly sexually predatory. Agatha is a determined but gauche sexual being - she devotes more attention to dressing right, slapping on the right amount of warpaint, getting the ambience right, than to actual detection. She likes her food, she likes her booze, and she likes her cats. She's bright and resourceful and quite likeable. Bur her detective skills are hardly the cerebral powers of detection exemplified by Holmes, Marple, or Poirot - determination and bloody mindedness are more her forte, with just a soupcon of intuition. Agatha has her police collaborator, in the form of Bill Wong - I confess to feeling let down by the description of his home and family. And there is an ensemble cast of village folk, from vicar's wife to unmarried mother, ironic little sketches of characters who contrast with their counterparts in a Marple mystery.

It's an entertaining book - the Agatha Raisin series is written with genuine humour and charm - and there is an intriguing mystery to be unravelled here, with plenty of suspects and not a few red herrings. Where the book falls down, however, is in the method of deduction. The way some of the evidence is obtained is just too far fetched - it's a bit deus ex machina, 'with one bound he was free' simplicity. The strength of the Agatha Raisin series lies in the humour and insightful characterisation which trips off the pages - the weakness is in the detection side. With the detection side made a touch more real and gritty, this would be a very fine series - but maybe this is partly satirising the superhuman powers of deduction and convenient presentation of evidence found in many cosy mysteries?
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Love it!, 10 May 2011
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This review is from: Agatha Raisin and the Vicious Vet (Agatha Raisin Mysteries Book 2) (Kindle Edition)
This is the second Agatha Raisin novel that I've read, and is also the second in the series. I enjoyed this even more than the first book. I'm growing fond of Agatha despite her grumpiness. Some of the passages in this story really made me laugh. I'm also enjoying getting to know the other characters in the village better.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Fun read but very contrived, 15 Oct 2007
By 
H Davies - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This is the first Agatha Raisin book I managed to get hold of, and I was originally quite keen to read them all. Having read this one, however, I'm not so sure. While I really like some of the characters, the situations Agatha finds herself in are completely ridiculous.

**Slight spoiler alert**
Agatha breaks into a bank, attempts to change a light bulb in a public toilet using a handy pack of light bulbs she just HAPPENS to have in her car, and discovers a body while snooping round a neighbour's house and deciding she needs to use the bathroom (as you do). She also finds herself wearing unsuitable footwear on several occasions, and being cringingly crude ("There's a tide of pee rising up to my eyeballs") every time she meets the man she's interested in.

It does have some redeeming features if you like the "cosy, village mystery" genre, but I'll be borrowing my next one from the library rather than spending money on it.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Silly but enjoyable escapism., 10 April 2008
By 
This is the sort of book you can whip through in a day or so. It makes very light bedtime reading and although it's very silly in places I'm more than happy to take all that tongue in cheek and enjoy it's froth. If you enjoy Midsomer Murders on a Sunday night then you'll probably enjoy this book.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Her Second Outing, 24 Oct 2009
By 
M. Dowden (London, UK) - See all my reviews
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After her first succesful case Agatha Raisin finds herself embroiled in yet another. After returning from her abortive Caribbean holiday where she finds that the man she is interested in had changed his destination when he knew where she was going, Agatha is taken by the new vet Paul Bladen. Mr Bladen although the new local vet doesn't seem to like small domestic animals, and only seems to be happy with farm animals and horses. When he is going to carry out a procedure on one of Lord Pendlebury's horses he dies in an accident of a lethal injection. It could just be an accident, the horse may have moved causing it to occur - or of course there could be something more sinister behind it.

Agatha Raisin decides that she must one more investigate a murder and persuades James Lacey to partner her. Like a bull in a china shop Agatha rushes in to solve the case with her usual aplomb. If you like Midsomer Murders and/or The First Lady Detective Agency you should enjoy this. Reading Agatha Raisin is like being offered a chocolate from a box only to find that no one has yet had the coffee creme.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Agatha Raisin, 3 Oct 2012
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just loving this series of books trying to read in order of published - and having just visited the colswolds for the first time it is bringing the towns places mentioned to life - love the work of this writer
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars CURIOSITY KILLED THE CAT..., 8 Oct 2010
By 
Lawyeraau (Balmoral Castle) - See all my reviews
(HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)    (TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
In this second book of this cozy mystery series, Agatha Raisin, a retired public relations agent, is still trying to meld into village life in the Cotswold village of Carsely. It is slow going, especially since her attractive neighbor, retired colonel James Lacey, has been resisting her romantic overtures.

So, when Agatha meets the handsome new vet, Dr. Paul Bladen, she wastes no time in taking Hodge, her cat, to pay the vet a visit. Agatha emerges from that visit triumphant, as the vet has asked her out on a dinner date. When Mrs. Bloxby, the vicar's wife and Agatha's friend, hears of it, she counsels Agatha to be careful, feeling there is something not quite right with the vet.

Agatha's relationship with the vet is short lived, however, as he meets an untimely end, which the police dismiss as an accident. Agatha, however, has suspicions that cause her to think otherwise, and she inveigles James Lacey to assist her in checking out her suspicions about the vet's death. When another murder takes place, even the police agree that Agatha may be on to something.

As with all cozy mysteries, the mystery is secondary to the development of the characters and their relationships with each other. The mystery is just the framework around which the characters and their relationships with one another evolve, bringing the village to life for the reader. This series of cozy mysteries is amusing, entertaining, and highly addictive.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars FOUND WANTING, 22 July 2010
By 
Mr. D. L. Rees "LEE DAVID" (DORSET) - See all my reviews
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Hearts a-flutter, the ladies of Carsely grab their pets - ill or not - and flock to the surgery of the new vet. Yes, Paul Bladen IS as handsome as described. He is also much else - none of it to his credit - and soon will be dead in suspicious circumstances. Agatha Raisin and new neighbour James Lacey investigate - to be overwhelmed by all those who had motive.

The author has fun, perhaps more so than the reader. Here, deliberately, is a world that never was - a Cotswold village peopled by caricatures. Agatha herself remains accident prone and abrasive - overdue for more likeable aspects. (Acquisition of two cats does, though, represent a softening.) Thank goodness for newly promoted DS Bill Wong, who introduces a touch of normality!

This second novel seems to be pushing its luck a bit, giving the impression of being written too quickly - some creakingly contrived episodes more befitting a rather poor sitcom. Patience is stretched with that silly pub smashed wash basin sequence; patience is exhausted when Agatha and James break into a bank to examine Paul Bladen's account. Oh dear! With the best will in the world, this simply will not do.

M.C. Beaton's Hamish Macbeth often greatly pleased. Hopefully Agatha Raisin WILL rise to such heights.
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17 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars GREAT FUN, 12 April 2001
By A Customer
The cover describes Agatha Raisin as a cross between Miss Marple and Lucille Ball (and Auntie Mame - but I don't know her). This is quite accurate. The story is most amusing, the dialogue is great and the insights into English country living are hilarious. This is the first Agatha Raisin I have read (mainly because it dealt with a vet) and I am hooked. I am ordering the rest of the series at once.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Agatha Acquires a Detecting Partner, 19 Jun 2007
By 
Donald Mitchell "Jesus Loves You!" (Thanks for Providing My Reviews over 124,000 Helpful Votes Globally) - See all my reviews
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Agatha Raisin and the Vicious Vet (Veterinarian) is the second book in the Agatha Raisin series of mysteries by M. C. Beaton, author of the highly acclaimed Hamish Macbeth mysteries. If you haven't yet read the first book in the series, Agatha Raisin and the Quiche of Death, I suggest you read that book before taking on Agatha Raisin and the Vicious Vet. The earlier book is a very strong introduction to this series: You'll like Agatha Raisin and the Vicious Vet much better if you have read the earlier book first.

As Agatha Raisin and the Vicious Vet opens, Agatha Raisin is frustrated by her unsuccessful pursuit of James Lacey, her handsome bachelor neighbor. Having heard that Lacey was off to the Bahamas for a vacation, Agatha headed there, too, only to find no James Lacey in situ. Returning to Carsely in the English Cotswolds, she's upset to learn that Lacey changed his plans for the Bahamas after learning that Agatha was scheduled to be there as well. He doesn't even answer his door when she stops by.

But she's mildly curious to learn about the new vet that the women at the Carsely Ladies Society are gushing over. Surely, her cat, Hodge, can provide an excuse. Imagine Agatha's surprise when a long wait to see Paul Bladen, the vet, leads to a dinner invitation. Her plans are foiled, however, by a winter storm, an accident, and a call to Bladen's home that encounters someone who claims to be his wife. But there is good news: James Lacey helps her after an accident.

In a separate story line, Agatha finds herself courted by James Pomfret who wants to open a new PR agency. Agatha is very impressed that Pomfret has two prestigious clients in tow . . . and must decide whether to invest her savings into this little venture. Disturbed by her failures with James Lacey and the setback with Paul Bladen, Agatha is seriously inclined to take up her old life in London. In the process, she finds herself acquiring a second cat.

Into the breach comes her good friend, Detective Sergeant Bill Wong, who wisely counsels a careful background check of Pomfret and taking it slower with James Lacey. On her own, she decides to confront Bladen about why he asked her out to dinner when he was married. Bladen offers an excuse and Agatha accepts a second dinner invitation. The date goes well (except for the wretched restaurant), and Agatha finds herself with the opportunity for romance. But before matters can progress much further, Bladen is found dead . . . having received an injection of a deadly poison that is used on horses. The police conclude it's an accident, but Agatha decides it would be fun to investigate anyway. In the process, she acquires a partner who enjoys turning over mysterious occurrences almost as much as she does.

Inevitably, this book will mostly be compared to Agatha Raisin and the Quiche of Death. The character development in that story was much better than this one, and the mystery was a little more satisfying to solve. Also, the predicament of being an embarrassed incomer made for a better nonmystery story line in that book. Agatha as a pursuer of men in Vicious Vet is portrayed mainly a series of virtual pratfalls as her aggressive nature gets her into what are more annoyingly awkward than funny situations. Vicious Vet's main virtue is that the character of James Lacey is developed into what could become a whole person eventually.

Unless you hated Agatha Raisin and the Quiche of Death, you'll probably find Vicious Vet to be an enjoyable, if somewhat disappointing, read.
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