A fun and quirky whodunit set in the Scottish Isles tests police officer Hamish MacBeth in this Christmastime murder mystery from New York Times bestselling and Agatha Raisin television series author M.C. Beaton.
Believing that someone is trying to murder her, gorgeous Jane Wetherby asks Hamish Macbeth to spend Christmas with her and an exclusive group of friends at her Scottish island health farm. With a cold in his head and no place to go for the holidays, Hamish accepts her invitation. He thinks the lady is a bit daft, but, arriving on the lonely isle of Eileencraig, he feels a prickle of foreboding. The locals are openly threatening; the other guests, especially a terrible snob named Heather Todd, are barely civil. So when Heather meets an untimely end, Hamish knows he doesn't have far to look for the culprit. The only snag in his investigation is that all the guests were in the house when Heather vanished. Now, as mysterious events abound on Eileencraig, Hamish must work through the holiday sniffles to find the killer-or else it will be a very miserable Christmas indeed . . .
Like the pleasures of ``a wee dram,'' reading about the adventures of Scottish policeman Hamish Macbeth is an experience delicious, stimulating and cozy. Previously seen in Death of a Cad , Hamish here departs from the sleepy precincts of his native Lochdub for a health farm on the gale-swept isle of Eileencraig to spend Christmas as guest of owner Jane Weatherby, who is upset by recent accidents that have befallen her since a local soothsayer saw death in Jane's tea leaves. Beset by assorted emotions, including his attraction to a fellow guest, widowed cookbook author Harriet Shaw, and occasionally nasty interactions among the others of the group, the normally lugubrious Hamish is at first inclined to blame the owner's troubles on coincidence. But when another guest, a snobbish, pontificating Glaswegian, turns up dead on a shoreline crag, Hamish, accompanied by Harriet, leaves no stone unturned to find the solution to the crime. As Christmas puddings--and yuletide mysteries--go, this one is a plum--a perfectly paced tale, told with just the right light touch.