The morning of Agatha's marriage to James Lacey dawns bright and clear. But her luck runs out in the church when Jimmy, the husband she had believed long dead, turns up large as life and twice as ugly. Agatha has a go at strangling him. James breaks off the engagement. So when Jimmy is found murdered next day, Agatha and James are both the prime suspects. And they'll have to work together in order to clear their names . . .
Praise for the Agatha Raisin series:
'M. C. Beaton's imperfect heroine is an absolute gem.' Publishers Weekly
'The detective novels of M. C. Beaton, a master of outrageous black comedy, have reached cult status.' The Times
'Being a cranky, middle-aged female myself, I found Agatha charming!' Amazon customer review
'I dream of being able to speak out like Aggie . . . she's a heroine!' A. Lucas, Essex, reader review
The blunt Agatha Raisin, with her stocky figure and "bearlike eyes," makes for an unusual sleuth, and her fifth outing (after Agatha Raisin and the Walkers of Dembley, 1995) certainly makes for an unusual adventure. The former public relations powerhouse who left London and a career for a simpler life in a Cotswold country village is about to marry her handsome next-door neighbor. But the wedding ceremony is halted mid-vow by the arrival of Jimmy Raisin, the husband Agatha fervently hoped was dead and has neglected to mention to James Lacey, the fastidious, upstanding citizen currently waiting to tie the knot. Even less convenient than a living husband who interrupts your wedding is one who, shortly thereafter, turns up dead in a ditch in the immediate neighborhood. Naturally, Agatha and James top the suspect list. But the dead Jimmy was a down-and-out alcoholic who had been known to practice a bit of blackmail. Agatha and James track down some of his victims, who have a distressing tendency to die shortly after being questioned by the two. With bodies stacking up and James refusing to marry Agatha (even though she has already sold her cottage), the atmosphere becomes nicely tense. Beaton, who also pens the Hamish MacBeth series, gleefully creates one excruciating situation after another for her indomitable heroine to endure.