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Death of a Kingfisher (Hamish Macbeth) Hardcover – 15 Mar 2012

4.3 out of 5 stars 78 customer reviews

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Hardcover, 15 Mar 2012
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Product details

  • Hardcover: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Constable; First UK Edition edition (15 Mar. 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1849010226
  • ISBN-13: 978-1849010221
  • Product Dimensions: 13.5 x 2 x 21.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (78 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 593,721 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

Once again M C Beaton has concocted an amusing brew of mystery and romance that will keep her fans turning the pages. (Publishers Weekly)

It's always a pleasure to return to Loch Dubh. (New York Times Book Review)

Breezy fun. (Publishers Weekly)

Explosive and engaging. (Booklist)

Review

'Once again MC Beaton has concocted an amusing brew of mystery and romance that will keep her fans turning the pages ... Breezy fun.' (Publishers Weekly)

'It's always a pleasure to return to Loch Dubh.' (The New York Times Book Review)

'Explosive and engaging.' (Booklist) --This text refers to the Audio CD edition.

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
The focus of this series of novels has always been on village life with its eccentric characters.The engaging personality of Hamish Macbeth as he solves cases,avoids promotion and fights off the ladies (well,sometimes)has kept me reading these novels even when the quality of the writing wavers.Unfortunately,these elements that ensured the longevity of the series are missing in this book-the villagers only have walk-on parts and Hamish has lost his spark,becoming very unpleasant in the process.The plot is peculiar:it starts off in a recognisable way with trouble at Lochdubh,but then escalates unbelievably into a rapidly sketched story involving psychopaths and Russian gangsters and a great deal of violence.I think I read these now because I was hooked on the earlier novels,but there has been a sharp downward curve in quality.Not recommended at all.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
As a big fan of the Hamish Macbeth series, I am always happy to see a new mystery appear and never want the series to end. This latest story suggests it may well be time for Beaton to leave Hamish and Loch Dubh in peace though. The book reads as if she has dictated it hurriedly and with no enthusiasm. The same characters appear as always which is nice but a change or two would be good and a bit more believable.

Credibility is the biggest issue here along with the rushed plot that conveniently skips forward all the time to ensure there's less writing to be done. the clever but unlikely plots of earlier books is replaced with lazy and totally unbelievable brutality. The plot isn't credible and the ending is dissatisfying and unresolved. It's a sad thing to say but Beaton's writing now seems tired and if US reviewers really do think she's up to date with life in Scotland then a trip to the UK is in order.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Marion Chesney's first novel was published around 33 years ago, and a further hundred or so novels have appeared since then. Just over half of these were written under the nom-de-plume 'M C Beaton', all but one featuring either the Cotswold investigations of the unlikely-named Agatha Raisin or the adventures of PC (now Sergeant) Hamish Macbeth in the small fictional town of Lochdubh, located somewhere in the north-western wilderness of the former County of Sutherland.

If you are new to the Hamish Macbeth books, you may be influenced by memories of the TV series broadcast in the mid 1990s, which did much to launch the career of actor Robert Carlyle. Although the 20 episodes were both successful and enjoyable, it's as well to put them out of your mind, as apart from the name of a handful of lead characters and the principal location (Lochdubh) there was little to connect the plotlines and character development of the TV series with any of the ten or eleven HM books published at the time it was filmed. The Lochdubh of the books is a small town, clearly somewhat bigger than the village of Plockton where the series was filmed, and Hamish himself is tall, thin and red-haired - a sort of emaciated Rob Roy McGregor - and cannot be readily reconciled with the dashing, dark-haired hero of the small screen.

'Death of a Kingfisher' is the 28th book in the series; the first appeared in 1985, so the average ia almost exactly one novel a year. This time, the recession is biting in rural Sutherland just as much as in the rest of Europe. Tourism is a very important part of the local economy, and the small nearby town of Braikie is determined to make the most of its limited assets.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I have been reading the MacBeth and Raisin books for about 8 years. I have managed to gather them all and have read all of them.
They have always meant a pleasant afternoon's easy reading of the latest adventures.
However this latest Hamish Macbeth hasn't exactly lost the plot - it simply has too many unlikely plots and far too many unlikely characters - to the point I had to re-read pages to make sure I was following the thread. It was as if there wasn't really a plot to start with - and the story meanders to a ridiculous conclusion.
It's a huge disappointment.

This happened in the last Agatha Raisin too - and like the last Agatha book - there was a long meandering and unlikely epilogue about characters that are nothing to do with the main character, Hamish.
I found myself losing patience with Hamish with and his snappy attitude to his constable - and with the previous love interests.
He seems to blame them for his failure - and it's always been HIS failure in the relationships.
For the first time Hamish seemed weak, snappy and churlish. Please give us back out old Hamish - or have his station closed and he move in with the Currie twins.

Hamish is better when he's like Lochdubh - simple and straightforward.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
... that it was me, who is getting bored with Mrs. Beatons books. But then my husband read this one, too, and he wasnt too much taken in by it either. Somehow she seems to get bored with her own creations. Is she putting a "knitting pattern" in front of her when she is starting to write a new book? One cant help thinking of the old Little Britain sketch where Dame Markham is dictating to her secretary " Yes, I will marry you, I will, I will, I will. Howe many pages? 12. Do you know the bible...." My Husband and I have been reading her books for many years, but have found the last couple of new ones rather mediocre and a far cry from interesting. Will we keep on reading them... we dont quite know yet. I am sure she will make enough money without us as fans.
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