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Beating About the Bush

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New York Times bestseller M. C. Beaton's cranky, crafty Agatha Raisin--now the star of a hit T.V. show--is back on the case again. One of Private Detective Agatha Raisin's many quirks was her tendency to exclaim, every time she drove along a motorway bordered by dense woodland, "What a good place to dump a body!" Yet she's clearly not the only one to think so, the police r New York Times bestseller M. C. Beaton's cranky, crafty Agatha Raisin--now the star of a hit T.V. show--is back on the case again. One of Private Detective Agatha Raisin's many quirks was her tendency to exclaim, every time she drove along a motorway bordered by dense woodland, "What a good place to dump a body!" Yet she's clearly not the only one to think so, the police realize, after poor elderly Mrs. Dunwiddy is found dead in the scrub by the road leading out of Mircester. Agatha digs into the case, facing off with everyone from secretive factory bosses to Russian officials as she wades deeper into the mystery surrounding the killing. And as if things weren't complicated enough, Agatha finds herself grappling with intensifying feelings for her friend and occasional lover, Sir Charles Fraith. Will Agatha get her man at last? Or will the killer get her first? This book is 6 hours 38 minutes long.


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New York Times bestseller M. C. Beaton's cranky, crafty Agatha Raisin--now the star of a hit T.V. show--is back on the case again. One of Private Detective Agatha Raisin's many quirks was her tendency to exclaim, every time she drove along a motorway bordered by dense woodland, "What a good place to dump a body!" Yet she's clearly not the only one to think so, the police r New York Times bestseller M. C. Beaton's cranky, crafty Agatha Raisin--now the star of a hit T.V. show--is back on the case again. One of Private Detective Agatha Raisin's many quirks was her tendency to exclaim, every time she drove along a motorway bordered by dense woodland, "What a good place to dump a body!" Yet she's clearly not the only one to think so, the police realize, after poor elderly Mrs. Dunwiddy is found dead in the scrub by the road leading out of Mircester. Agatha digs into the case, facing off with everyone from secretive factory bosses to Russian officials as she wades deeper into the mystery surrounding the killing. And as if things weren't complicated enough, Agatha finds herself grappling with intensifying feelings for her friend and occasional lover, Sir Charles Fraith. Will Agatha get her man at last? Or will the killer get her first? This book is 6 hours 38 minutes long.

30 review for Beating About the Bush

  1. 5 out of 5

    Beata

    I started reading this series years ago, and have followed Agatha Raisin ever since. This 30th instalment is as good as the first books with Aggie: she is bossy, pushy, and she can draw correct conclusions from her observations. I enjoyed this easy weekend read and I am glad good old Aggie is back. *A big thank-you to St. Martin's Press, MC Beaton and NetGalley for arc in exchange for my honest review.* I started reading this series years ago, and have followed Agatha Raisin ever since. This 30th instalment is as good as the first books with Aggie: she is bossy, pushy, and she can draw correct conclusions from her observations. I enjoyed this easy weekend read and I am glad good old Aggie is back. *A big thank-you to St. Martin's Press, MC Beaton and NetGalley for arc in exchange for my honest review.*

  2. 4 out of 5

    Sandy *The world could end while I was reading and I would never notice*

    EXCERPT: They were through the outer edge of the thicket, and only a few feet to their right they could see the brogue, the ankle, the lower leg, and...that was it. There was no body, just a sawn off leg lying amid the litter of dead leaves and twigs. ABOUT THIS BOOK: When private detective Agatha Raisin comes across a severed leg in a roadside hedge, it looks like she is about to become involved in a particularly gruesome murder. Looks, however, can be deceiving, as Agatha discovers when she is EXCERPT: They were through the outer edge of the thicket, and only a few feet to their right they could see the brogue, the ankle, the lower leg, and...that was it. There was no body, just a sawn off leg lying amid the litter of dead leaves and twigs. ABOUT THIS BOOK: When private detective Agatha Raisin comes across a severed leg in a roadside hedge, it looks like she is about to become involved in a particularly gruesome murder. Looks, however, can be deceiving, as Agatha discovers when she is employed to investigate a case of industrial espionage at a factory where nothing is quite what it seems. The factory mystery soon turns to murder and a bad-tempered donkey turns Agatha into a national celebrity, before bringing her ridicule and shame. To add to her woes, Agatha finds herself grappling with growing feelings for her friend and occasional lover, Sir Charles Fraith. Then, as a possible solution to the factory murder unfolds, her own life is thrown into deadly peril. Will Agatha get her man at last? Or will the killer get her first? MY THOUGHTS: I enjoyed this romp with Agatha (she hates being called Aggie). I enjoyed her acerbic wit, and even her temper tantrums. She is a fault-finder supreme who can be equally charming when she wants or needs to be, and has a smile that lights up the room and melts hearts. But she does call a spade a spade, and abhors stupidity and/or anyone who doesn't see things from her perspective. Her personal life is something of a shambles, and I felt very sorry for her assistant Toni at times. I love Beaton's descriptions of people...'Charles was a crease-free zone......If he were ever - perish the thought - to grow wrinkly with age, Gustav, his loyal retainer, would find a way to iron him.' And the way she gently pokes fun at the British aristocracy and their social climbing hangers on. 'They sell sanitary towels?' 'Well someone has to.' 'Of course someone has to, Charles, but you don't marry them.' Agatha Raisin comes across much better on paper than she is portrayed in the TV series...I must admit to not having been able to sit through one entire episode. I enjoyed this amusing interlude with Agatha. She was just the antidote I needed for all my recent dark reads. She brought a smile to my face, and I can see myself calling on her again when I am in need of some light relief. 🤗🤣😂🙂 #BeatingAboutTheBushMcBeaton #NetGalley THE AUTHOR: Marion Chesney Gibbons aka: Ann Fairfax, Jennie Tremaine, Helen Crampton, Marion Chesney, Charlotte Ward, Sarah Chester. Marion Chesney was born on 1936 in Glasgow, Scotland, UK, and started her first job as a bookseller in charge of the fiction department in John Smith & Sons Ltd. While bookselling, by chance, she got an offer from the Scottish Daily Mail to review variety shows and quickly rose to be their theatre critic. She left Smith’s to join Scottish Field magazine as a secretary in the advertising department, without any shorthand or typing, but quickly got the job of fashion editor instead. She then moved to the Scottish Daily Express where she reported mostly on crime. This was followed by a move to Fleet Street to the Daily Express where she became chief woman reporter. After marrying Harry Scott Gibbons and having a son, Charles, Marion went to the United States where Harry had been offered the job of editor of the Oyster Bay Guardian. When that didn’t work out, they went to Virginia and Marion worked as a waitress in a greasy spoon on the Jefferson Davies in Alexandria while Harry washed the dishes. Both then got jobs on Rupert Murdoch’s new tabloid, The Star, and moved to New York. Anxious to spend more time at home with her small son, Marion, urged by her husband, started to write historical romances in 1977. After she had written over 100 of them under her maiden name, Marion Chesney, and under the pseudonyms: Ann Fairfax, Jennie Tremaine, Helen Crampton, Charlotte Ward, and Sarah Chester, she getting fed up with 1714 to 1910, she began to write detectives stories in 1985 under the pseudonym of M. C. Beaton. On a trip from the States to Sutherland on holiday, a course at a fishing school inspired the first Constable Hamish Macbeth story. They returned to Britain and bought a croft house and croft in Sutherland where Harry reared a flock of black sheep. But Charles was at school, in London so when he finished and both tired of the long commute to the north of Scotland, they moved to the Cotswolds where Agatha Raisin was created DISCLOSURE: Thank you to St Martin's Press, Minotaur Books via Netgalley for providing a digital ARC of Beating About the Bush by M.C. Beaton for review. All opinions expressed in this review are entirely my own personal opinions. For an explanation of my rating system please refer to my Goodreads.com profile page or the about page on sandysbookaday.wordpress.com This review, and others, is also published on Twitter, Amazon and my webpage https://sandysbookaday.wordpress.com/...

  3. 4 out of 5

    Susan

    Agatha is up to her old tricks. She's as unpleasant and direct as always as she is called in to investigate a manufacturer company's concern about security. She is really ambivalent until she learns the company has a donkey and then she is in love. Who knew what would melt her heart? The donkey is framed for murder and Agatha does her best to clear the donkey's name. The investigation takes her into an international conspiracy and the discovery has a scary consequence for her. She also meets a n Agatha is up to her old tricks. She's as unpleasant and direct as always as she is called in to investigate a manufacturer company's concern about security. She is really ambivalent until she learns the company has a donkey and then she is in love. Who knew what would melt her heart? The donkey is framed for murder and Agatha does her best to clear the donkey's name. The investigation takes her into an international conspiracy and the discovery has a scary consequence for her. She also meets a new man and gets involved into a money making scheme. This is a nice addition to the series and Agatha's fans won't be disappointed. Thanks to NetGalley for a copy of this book in exchange for a fair review.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Paul E. McPaulface

    The thirtieth book in the Agatha Raisin series is definitely something of a return to form for Agatha. It's like the author thought 'Hmm, it's the big THREE-OH; I'd better make it a good one'. The plot wasn’t as hackneyed, it was genuinely funny and the general quality of the prose was just superior. Also, donkeys FTW. As this was the last Aggie book released in M.C. Beaton’s lifetime, this is farewell to Mrs. Raisin for me until the final book in the series is released posthumously later this ye The thirtieth book in the Agatha Raisin series is definitely something of a return to form for Agatha. It's like the author thought 'Hmm, it's the big THREE-OH; I'd better make it a good one'. The plot wasn’t as hackneyed, it was genuinely funny and the general quality of the prose was just superior. Also, donkeys FTW. As this was the last Aggie book released in M.C. Beaton’s lifetime, this is farewell to Mrs. Raisin for me until the final book in the series is released posthumously later this year. Here’s hoping the stroppy old cow goes out on a high note. :-) P.S. Re: ‘stroppy old cow’ – I mean the character, not the author!

  5. 5 out of 5

    Roman Clodia

    Haha, well *of course* it's ridiculous that Agatha and friends should be employed to uncover a case of industrial espionage but from the moment Aggie discovers a severed leg in the bushes, it's a comic revelry! With death by donkey... It's nice to see Beaton creating an actual plot again, however transparent and ludicrous, but the real joy is the irascible Aggie alternating between insensitive bossiness and romantic vulnerability all over again. With Charles Fraith back on the scene, a charming n Haha, well *of course* it's ridiculous that Agatha and friends should be employed to uncover a case of industrial espionage but from the moment Aggie discovers a severed leg in the bushes, it's a comic revelry! With death by donkey... It's nice to see Beaton creating an actual plot again, however transparent and ludicrous, but the real joy is the irascible Aggie alternating between insensitive bossiness and romantic vulnerability all over again. With Charles Fraith back on the scene, a charming new man for Agatha to pursue, and her continued rivalry with Toni (which also brings out Aggie's rather terrifying maternal side...) this is cosy comfort reading just made for bath or sofa with wine and chocolate!

  6. 4 out of 5

    Linden

    Agatha is hired by a company suspecting industrial espionage, but after a death, which Agatha suspects is murder, everything becomes more complicated. The local police chief wants to close the case, but Agatha refuses to believe a donkey called Wizz-Wazz caused the woman's death. How many authors (at 80+) can say that the 30th in their series is the best yet? MC Beaton certainly can. Her newest Agatha Raisin mystery is so much fun to read. Thanks to the publisher for this ARC. Agatha is hired by a company suspecting industrial espionage, but after a death, which Agatha suspects is murder, everything becomes more complicated. The local police chief wants to close the case, but Agatha refuses to believe a donkey called Wizz-Wazz caused the woman's death. How many authors (at 80+) can say that the 30th in their series is the best yet? MC Beaton certainly can. Her newest Agatha Raisin mystery is so much fun to read. Thanks to the publisher for this ARC.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Celine Godfrey

    As much as I love Agatha Raisin, I think the only reason I read the books now is because I want to keep up with the series. I'm afraid I've felt the last few books have gone downhill and this one is no exception. Really thin, transparent plot, reduced number of old, favourite characters ... James is mentioned once; Charles only appears three or four times, Roy once, Mrs Bloxby once .. Bill Wong a little more often as he always seems to be picking up the pieces of Agatha's aftermath, especially t As much as I love Agatha Raisin, I think the only reason I read the books now is because I want to keep up with the series. I'm afraid I've felt the last few books have gone downhill and this one is no exception. Really thin, transparent plot, reduced number of old, favourite characters ... James is mentioned once; Charles only appears three or four times, Roy once, Mrs Bloxby once .. Bill Wong a little more often as he always seems to be picking up the pieces of Agatha's aftermath, especially trying to sit on the fence between her and his Inspector. The donkey got a LOT more page time than all of the other characters! This seemed to be the Agatha and Toni show as it is them together all the way through. Agatha her usual irascible self, the will they/won't they romance with Charles is the same as usual, which is getting very frustrating now. I also find Agatha's insulting or angry retorts to anyone who annoys her, more annoying too. If you're going to insult, at least make it funny and/or clever. And I still don't understand why Agatha STILL goes off on her own in pursuit of murderers, knowing she's putting herself in danger ... and always someone jumping in at the last second to save her. There is a new love interest (of course) whom I actually feel is too good for Agatha!! She's just too shallow and grumpy now! In the book, even Toni tells her she's become more quick tempered! Agatha has just become too predictable for me. I did actually stop half way through a psycho thriller (my fave genre) to read this one as soon as I got it and I was pretty disappointed. The series has become such a predictable format now. That said, I'll still get the next one but in the hope that the old characters are given more page time, the plot has a few more twists and turns and Agatha and Charles address what their relationship is going to be. To me, this was disappointing and rates just an ok.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Joan Happel

    The irascible Agatha Raisin is back in this 30th installment to the popular series. This time around Agatha and her assistant Toni Gilmour are hired by Albert Morrison, the head of a company that manufactures batteries, to investigate possible corporate sabotage. When Morrison’s secretary Mrs. Dinwiddy is found murdered, police lay the blame at the “hoofs” of Mrs. Morrison’s pet donkey Wizz-Wazz. Agatha soon sets out to prove Wizz-Wazz’s innocence and bring the real murderer to justice! As in the The irascible Agatha Raisin is back in this 30th installment to the popular series. This time around Agatha and her assistant Toni Gilmour are hired by Albert Morrison, the head of a company that manufactures batteries, to investigate possible corporate sabotage. When Morrison’s secretary Mrs. Dinwiddy is found murdered, police lay the blame at the “hoofs” of Mrs. Morrison’s pet donkey Wizz-Wazz. Agatha soon sets out to prove Wizz-Wazz’s innocence and bring the real murderer to justice! As in the previous books, Agatha’s brashness and lack of tact makes enemies of those who encounter her, but those close to her know that beneath that tough exterior is a heart of gold. Loyalty to her friends as well as her luckless love life keep readers sympathetic and always coming back. This is an enjoyable cozy series with offbeat characters and intriguing mysteries. So, settle in with a plate of fish and chips, a glass of gin and tonic and enjoy the ride! Thanks to St. Martins Press and NetGalley for the e-ARC.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Bam cooks the books ;-)

    Thirty books in this series now and they just keep getting better! Light-hearted fun, amusing characters, a dash of romance, all mixed in with an interesting mystery. This plot seemed a bit more coherent than some previous ones and kept on track. A quick, fun read!

  10. 4 out of 5

    Clare

    Was ok but I'm finding the newer books aren't as good as the older ones. Was ok but I'm finding the newer books aren't as good as the older ones.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Fiona MacDonald

    Agatha and her life is just such a safe place for me to escape to. I know for a fact I am going to feel content and happy after finishing one of her (or Hamish Macbeth's) stories. Every single thing about her - her house, her cats, her job, her friends, her local pub all scream 'COSY' at me. I know some people don't enjoy these books as much because they always follow the same structure, but that is precisely what I DO like about them; I know what I'm getting into and it reassures me. Agatha's la Agatha and her life is just such a safe place for me to escape to. I know for a fact I am going to feel content and happy after finishing one of her (or Hamish Macbeth's) stories. Every single thing about her - her house, her cats, her job, her friends, her local pub all scream 'COSY' at me. I know some people don't enjoy these books as much because they always follow the same structure, but that is precisely what I DO like about them; I know what I'm getting into and it reassures me. Agatha's latest (30st) adventure follows Agatha getting into muddy business with a temperamental donkey named 'Wizz Wazz' (which is just the best name EVER for a donkey) as she tries to take down an illegal smuggling business whilst also juggling the newest revelations from her on again off again lover, Charles Fraith that he is getting married. All the gang are in this one (apart from James Lacey who is off travelling the world) and it's a world I adore. I wish Carsely was a real place, or at the most I wish I knew which village it was based on so I could go and bask in its warmth.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Julie

    I don't remember when I last heard Penelope Keith's voice. It was a lovely treat and made listening to this book all the more enjoyable. As for Agatha Raisin, her mood seemed permanently set on cantankerous and she managed to rub most everyone she met up the wrong way. When she frets that she's messed up her chance for publicity for her detective agency with her latest outburst, the patient Mrs. Bloxby gives her some sage advice: "We must live our lives forward, but we can only truly know oursel I don't remember when I last heard Penelope Keith's voice. It was a lovely treat and made listening to this book all the more enjoyable. As for Agatha Raisin, her mood seemed permanently set on cantankerous and she managed to rub most everyone she met up the wrong way. When she frets that she's messed up her chance for publicity for her detective agency with her latest outburst, the patient Mrs. Bloxby gives her some sage advice: "We must live our lives forward, but we can only truly know ourselves by looking back. We are defined by everything we have done in the past, but our only hope of change lies in the future."

  13. 5 out of 5

    Librarian

    I finished this book and couldn’t remember a thing about it a few hours later. Not sure if Beaton is losing her magic, if she’s employed a ghost writer, or if she’s always followed a formula and I’m just now noticing, but this was much less charming than previous books. And I’m sick to death of the Charles/Agatha love interest.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Kathy

    Another great Agatha Raisin mystery from M.C. Beaton. Agatha is true to form in this 30th book in the series, being in the wrong place at the right time, beating the police to a solution, irritating both friends and others (but still managing to remain a friend), seeking love in all the wrong places, and comparing herself to others instead of realizing what an accomplished and attractive woman she is. Our Agatha is quite the force, and it's always an adventure seeing her push her way through obs Another great Agatha Raisin mystery from M.C. Beaton. Agatha is true to form in this 30th book in the series, being in the wrong place at the right time, beating the police to a solution, irritating both friends and others (but still managing to remain a friend), seeking love in all the wrong places, and comparing herself to others instead of realizing what an accomplished and attractive woman she is. Our Agatha is quite the force, and it's always an adventure seeing her push her way through obstacles that would hinder her in solving a murder. All the sidekicks we've come to love are there--Toni and Patrick at work, Mrs. Bloxby, Roy Silver, Bill Wong, and the on-again, off-again lover Charles Fraith. The ensemble is in perfect form for proving an accident is a murder and a donkey is innocent. Agatha Raisin's detecting firm is hired by a battery-making factory to investigate possible industrial espionage. Indeed there are secrets running rampant at the company, but it has little to do with espionage. Agatha and Toni Gilmour are working the case, as all other personnel at the detecting agency are busy with other cases. They are immediately confronted with a strange atmosphere at the company with odd employees and a shady HR director. When a death occurs on the grounds of the factory, a donkey named Wizz-Wazz is blamed, but Agatha becomes a champion for the donkey, as she is sure that the death was murder and not an accident. Agatha has fallen for some different sorts over the years, but her affection and support for Wizz-Wazz is a delightful dedication to behold, and it has connections to her childhood wish for a donkey. Just when readers think Agatha is becoming rather crotchety in her middle-age, she shows a soft side that endears her to us all over again. The ongoing search for a man who will fulfill her dreams and complete her life is still going strong in book 30. Agatha is an accomplished businesswoman and astute detective, but she is terrible at choosing men. She and Sir Charles Fraith have been involved on and off, and they seem to be great together at their best, but something always breaks them apart. And, now Charles is engaged, again. Agatha isn't too worried because Charles' engagements never seem to make it to the alter, but this fiancée might prove a bit more determined. Of course, Sir Charles' butler doesn't want him to get married to anyone, so he might find a way out for his long-time employer. This series is a great mixture of murder mystery and Agatha's personal mishaps. Readers cheer for her to find her happy ending, but we also have to laugh at how she bungles it. M.C. Beaton has managed to keep readers entertained and thrilled through thirty books now. Beating About the Bush is as much fun as all the other Agatha adventures. I hope that there are many more to come.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Cyndi

    And she's back!! The last few books in the series were missing the Agatha Raisin feel but this one hits it on the head. There are twists and turns with Agatha riding the waves. Our girl is hired to investigate espionage but soon finds murder. Of course. What is a cozy mystery without a dead body or two? Meanwhile there is a bad tempered donkey who takes a shine on Agatha and more interesting characters are introduced. This book was worth the wait. And she's back!! The last few books in the series were missing the Agatha Raisin feel but this one hits it on the head. There are twists and turns with Agatha riding the waves. Our girl is hired to investigate espionage but soon finds murder. Of course. What is a cozy mystery without a dead body or two? Meanwhile there is a bad tempered donkey who takes a shine on Agatha and more interesting characters are introduced. This book was worth the wait.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Sarah

    I have been reading Agatha Raisin novels for many years, and had been disappointed to observe that the last 10 or so books in the series had been constantly going downhill: bad writing (only short sentences, repetitive vocabulary, inconsistencies), sub-standard plots and terrible editing. So I picked up #30 with very little expectation. Well, it seems that Marion Chesney (1936-2019), aka Ms Beaton, went out with a bang! That, or her editors finally decided to give her very last book the VIP trea I have been reading Agatha Raisin novels for many years, and had been disappointed to observe that the last 10 or so books in the series had been constantly going downhill: bad writing (only short sentences, repetitive vocabulary, inconsistencies), sub-standard plots and terrible editing. So I picked up #30 with very little expectation. Well, it seems that Marion Chesney (1936-2019), aka Ms Beaton, went out with a bang! That, or her editors finally decided to give her very last book the VIP treatment. I actually enjoyed "Beating about the Bush", appreciating its plot and the humour, and I wasn't annoyed by the writing / editing. Ouf! Ms Chesney can rest in peace.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Alan Teder

    Agatha and the Donkey Wizz Wazz Review of the St. Martin's Press Minotaur hardcover (December 2019) Beating About the Bush still has some of the nastiness and verbal abuse between characters which I especially disliked in the previous entry of the series The Dead Ringer. Agatha and Toni start off feuding right away in chapter 1, but it does drop off afterwards. Whether the late series bitterness was a tic of author M.C. Beaton or a ghostwriter is unknown. Another uncharacteristic slip was Sir Char Agatha and the Donkey Wizz Wazz Review of the St. Martin's Press Minotaur hardcover (December 2019) Beating About the Bush still has some of the nastiness and verbal abuse between characters which I especially disliked in the previous entry of the series The Dead Ringer. Agatha and Toni start off feuding right away in chapter 1, but it does drop off afterwards. Whether the late series bitterness was a tic of author M.C. Beaton or a ghostwriter is unknown. Another uncharacteristic slip was Sir Charles Fraith referring to Agatha as "sweetie" at one point, definitely a Roy Silver-like term. The continuation series books Hot to Trot and Down the Hatch by R.W. Green start to ease off on the nastiness at least. Beating... does add a new comic element with the introduction of the donkey Wizz Wazz, the pet of the wife of one of the chief suspects. Cranky Agatha makes a new animal friend who proceeds to embarrass her at times in front of the media, but who later becomes accused of one of the murders and ignites a "Save Wizz Wazz" campaign. That allows series regular Roy Silver a return to help with the promotions. Otherwise, the villains are pretty clear from early on in the plot. These cozies are always somewhat different from the TV-series which I saw first. Agatha is definitely more cranky in the books, but her human faults and foibles make us accept and love her nevertheless. The formula is set in stone now for the series. Agatha finds a new man, is jealous of ex-husband James Lacey and occasional lover/friend Charles Fraith, is jealous and meddling with Toni Gilmour's love life, helps Roy Silver out despite his publicity transgressions, gets sympathy from Mrs. Bloxby, is helped by first village friend Detective Sergeant Bill Wong, etc. I read the hardcover from the library this time, but if you listen to the audiobook edition then the narration of this book #30 marks the return of series regular Penelope Keith for books #30 to #32. Keith has a great manner of adding character to the different voices. Most (28 of 32) of the Agatha Raisin audiobooks are free on Audible Plus. A continuation series Book 32 Down the Hatch was published on October 26, 2021. Down the Hatch is entirely written by continuation writer R.W. Green whereas #31 Hot to Trot was a collaboration with M.C. Beaton. Trivia and No Link Beating About the Bush has not yet been adapted for the currently ongoing Agatha Raisin TV series (2016-).

  18. 4 out of 5

    Emma's Things to Read

    This is the 30th Agatha Raisin mystery in the highly successful series and I have read them all! Agatha Raisin books are like your favourite cosy jumper on a rainy day - while some are better than others and you know what you are getting, they are always satisfying. I really enjoyed this installment. Some of the predicaments that Agatha finds herself in are really quite funny and the donkey does steal the show much to Agatha's disgust and the reader's amusement. Her relationships with assistant This is the 30th Agatha Raisin mystery in the highly successful series and I have read them all! Agatha Raisin books are like your favourite cosy jumper on a rainy day - while some are better than others and you know what you are getting, they are always satisfying. I really enjoyed this installment. Some of the predicaments that Agatha finds herself in are really quite funny and the donkey does steal the show much to Agatha's disgust and the reader's amusement. Her relationships with assistant Toni and sometimes lover/good friend Sir Charles are really developing and make Agatha more sympathetic than she was in a few of the books. I think this is a series that is back on track and the author has sent up the potential feud with Sir Charles' new fiancee for the future. This is a great, quick read, cosy Cotsworld mystery perfect for winter nights. Thank you Netgalley for the advanced digital copy in return for an honest review.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Una Tiers

    This book had a strong start, although the characters are fighting. Throughout the book the author sets Agatha up and then changes direction. But the second half resorts to a tired pattern that does not appear to be written by Beaton. The saving grace was to be able to visit with the regular characters. The book was stronger than the last several in this series but not as strong as the first ten in the series.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Lauren

    These books are a very fun read for me who wants to live in an eccentric english village with overflowing gardens ,a pub, local scandals, and the character Agatha Raisin a new comer from London who throws herself into life in her village, in her awkward way and her determination to solve crimes any way she can possibly do it-

  21. 5 out of 5

    Laura

    I love these books I’ve read all of them but this one seemed a bit bit disjointed and it just felt like I was reading about stuff that didn’t make sense !!! I am sad to hear the author recently passed away maybe she wasn’t feeling well and I will miss Agatha greatly ❤️💔

  22. 5 out of 5

    Helen

    Having read the book and heard the audiobook, the audio version is much superior! That said, the author's writing style is still enjoyable, and I like the portrayal of village England and a middle-aged woman in love. The donkey Wizz-Wozz is unforgettable! Having read the book and heard the audiobook, the audio version is much superior! That said, the author's writing style is still enjoyable, and I like the portrayal of village England and a middle-aged woman in love. The donkey Wizz-Wozz is unforgettable!

  23. 5 out of 5

    Lisa

    This book is an example of the law of diminishing returns. Not the best in the series. If you are new to Agatha Raisin, read the first five only. They were the best of the series.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Jammin Jenny

    I really enjoyed this book in the Agatha Raisin series. There's a mad goat named Whiz Waz (not sure about the spelling as I listened to the audiobook). Agatha is her usual self, feeling a bit jealous of Tony for her youth, angry at Charles for his (view spoiler)[special engagement (hide spoiler)] , and determined to find the real murderer - not the goat. I really enjoyed this book in the Agatha Raisin series. There's a mad goat named Whiz Waz (not sure about the spelling as I listened to the audiobook). Agatha is her usual self, feeling a bit jealous of Tony for her youth, angry at Charles for his (view spoiler)[special engagement (hide spoiler)] , and determined to find the real murderer - not the goat.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Mandy

    Fabulous quick read. Laugh out loud moments - just what I needed. So sad the author passed away late 2019 will miss this series. Now to finish the Hamish Macbeth series.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Amanda

    Either the editor is drunk or is purposefully doing an awful job because the inconsistencies are AWFUL. I've never read a series with so many errors. -One book says Mrs. Bloxby's first name is Sarah, another says her name is Margaret. - Simon moves to the Cotswold's because his parents died and it's a pretty central part of the story . Literally the next book they are alive and well. - Agatha tells Tony about her past. A few books later that therapist lady finds out and tells the whole village ab Either the editor is drunk or is purposefully doing an awful job because the inconsistencies are AWFUL. I've never read a series with so many errors. -One book says Mrs. Bloxby's first name is Sarah, another says her name is Margaret. - Simon moves to the Cotswold's because his parents died and it's a pretty central part of the story . Literally the next book they are alive and well. - Agatha tells Tony about her past. A few books later that therapist lady finds out and tells the whole village about Agatha's poor roots. Then a few books after that Tony starts to "suspect" Agatha had a poor upbringing like her. ....????? - In one book a set of twins that are one male and one female are called identical twins (which is biologically impossible. They're fraternal). - In "Blood of an Englishman" she asks an English teacher out to lunch. For a Wednesday. And he asks what time. Like he's not a high school teacher who has a scheduled lunch hour. THEN pages later Agatha's worried it's going to snow too hard for her to go to lunch with him on...Saturday. - One book says Agatha is 55. A few books later and it says she's 53. Either way, she has been in her 50's for 30 books now. There have been multiple Christmas books to show the passage of time. It is physically impossible for Agatha to still be in her 50's. - Out of nowhere it is mentioned that the Lady's society has disbanded. A few books later Agatha says she recognizes someone from the Lady's Society meetings that she still goes to... - This book was released in 2019. Roy and Agatha obsessively scour the newspapers to see how their press event went. I'm sorry, no supposed "PR experts" are going to be that obsessed with newspapers in 2019. They'd be looking at online articles, videos etc. Roy is supposed to be young so he should know how PR works in today's digital era. - This is more of a personal annoyance, but why does Agatha think if Tony gets married she's going to quit her job and start pushing out babies??? Again this is 2019. Married women and even (gasp) mothers work. - Agatha supposedly almost commits bigamy when her ex-husband turns out to still be alive. Like being legally separated isn't a thing. If you haven't seen your spouse in decades you're legally separated and can file for divorce all on your own. Her ex being alive is a non-issue, but an entire book's plot centers around it. - In this book she says getting caught by the drug men was the "scariest thing that's ever happened to her." Even though she has been buried alive twice (once was literally in a casket with a dead body), had to get brain surgery from being attacked with a hammer and almost froze to death in a freezer next to a dead body. - James sells his cottage. The next few books reference the new neighbors as the new "owners". Then randomly James moves back in and still owns it somehow?? He also tells Agatha he'll let her pick who he sells it to and the next book she has no idea who her new neighbor is. I've been listening to the audiobooks back to back and even though it's so bad I just can't stop listening haha.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Bridget

    Agatha Raisin is back in this thirtieth instalment of the popular series by M.C. Beaton. In Beating About the Bush Agatha and her assistant, Toni Gilmour, are hired by Albert Morrison, the head of an engineering company that develops and manufactures batteries for the motor industry, to investigate possible industrial espionage. Returning home with Toni, they spot a brogue in the undergrowth thought to be the severed leg of Morrison’s secretary, Mrs Dinwiddy. When a donkey called Wizz-Wazz is ac Agatha Raisin is back in this thirtieth instalment of the popular series by M.C. Beaton. In Beating About the Bush Agatha and her assistant, Toni Gilmour, are hired by Albert Morrison, the head of an engineering company that develops and manufactures batteries for the motor industry, to investigate possible industrial espionage. Returning home with Toni, they spot a brogue in the undergrowth thought to be the severed leg of Morrison’s secretary, Mrs Dinwiddy. When a donkey called Wizz-Wazz is accused of accidentally killing an employee, Agatha and her acolytes take up the cause to prove its innocence and bring the real murderer to justice. Moving constantly between humour and hazard, Beating About the Bush kept me on my toes throughout as I devoured each chapter. Agatha might come across as a bumbling, hard to please fusspot at times, but she is a smart cookie and, with the resources she has at her disposal provided by her other staff, she makes short work of what needs to be done. With a smattering of romance for Agatha which added another ingredient to the mix, the mystery itself was sound and there was always something going on to keep my attention focused. The clues were cleverly placed and even though I was not perplexed by the killer's motives, the culprit was not whom I had suspected, the ending leaving me wanting to read another instalment in the Agatha Raisin series. I received a complimentary copy of this novel at my request from Little, Brown Book Group/ Constable via NetGalley. This review is my own unbiased opinion.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Gina

    Agatha....and thankfully, narrator Penelope Keith....are BACK!! After two less than stellar books clearly not written by Beaton, it seems she's either perked up or fired her ghostwriter because this book was very much her old and much beloved style. Whew!! I was a tad disappointed in the storyline between her and Charles this time, which I can't really discuss without spoilers, but our Aggie is back to her old antics, getting into trouble, telling people off and annoying her beleaguered but doti Agatha....and thankfully, narrator Penelope Keith....are BACK!! After two less than stellar books clearly not written by Beaton, it seems she's either perked up or fired her ghostwriter because this book was very much her old and much beloved style. Whew!! I was a tad disappointed in the storyline between her and Charles this time, which I can't really discuss without spoilers, but our Aggie is back to her old antics, getting into trouble, telling people off and annoying her beleaguered but doting assistant, Toni. I was happy to see Roy and Mrs. Bloxby make appearances, although much less frequently than in previous books. This one really focused on Agatha (and a captivatingly cantankerous donkey named Wizz Wazz). So glad to see her back in top form again, and since Penelope Keith is the only narrator who truly brings Agatha to life, I'm thrilled to hear her back again too. No offense to Allison Larkin, I'm sure she does a fine job with other books but she is NOT Agatha Raisin. Looking forward to the next book!

  29. 4 out of 5

    Sylvia

    Wonderful Agatha Raisin is back along with all the reasons her fans love her. She stumbles upon another murder, is insecure about her appearance and abilities, is jealous of Toni, once again makes a fool of CI Wilkes, and is after another love interest. The other regular cast of characters make appearances, too - Mrs. Bloxby, Roy Silver, Bill Wong and Sir Charles Fraith. Yes, this book is a little predictable and formulaic, but isn't that what we are looking for in an Agatha Raisin story? If you Wonderful Agatha Raisin is back along with all the reasons her fans love her. She stumbles upon another murder, is insecure about her appearance and abilities, is jealous of Toni, once again makes a fool of CI Wilkes, and is after another love interest. The other regular cast of characters make appearances, too - Mrs. Bloxby, Roy Silver, Bill Wong and Sir Charles Fraith. Yes, this book is a little predictable and formulaic, but isn't that what we are looking for in an Agatha Raisin story? If you're an Agatha Raisin fan, you will enjoy this book. "In compliance with FTC guidelines, I received this book for free through Goodreads First Reads."

  30. 5 out of 5

    Annarella

    This is the best Agatha Raisin's instalment I read in some time. Agatha is at her best, quirky and funny. It was great to meet again the cast of characters Charles, Tony, Bill Wong and all the others. I had a lot of fun in reading this novel, it's engrossing and entertaining. I appreciated the humour, the well crafted cast of characters and their development, and a lovely donkey. The mystery is solid, full of twists and turns, and it kept me guessing till the end. It was a very pleasant and fun read, This is the best Agatha Raisin's instalment I read in some time. Agatha is at her best, quirky and funny. It was great to meet again the cast of characters Charles, Tony, Bill Wong and all the others. I had a lot of fun in reading this novel, it's engrossing and entertaining. I appreciated the humour, the well crafted cast of characters and their development, and a lovely donkey. The mystery is solid, full of twists and turns, and it kept me guessing till the end. It was a very pleasant and fun read, I strongly recommend it. Many thanks to the publisher for this ARC, all opinions are mine.

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