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Death of a Poison Pen (Hamish Macbeth, #20)
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Death of a Poison Pen (Hamish Macbeth #20)

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3.83 of 5 stars 3.83  ·  rating details  ·  2,007 ratings  ·  106 reviews
Poison pen letters lead to murder in this new Hamish Macbeth mystery from M.C.Beaton. When the townspeople of Lochdubh begin receiving poison pen letters, no one takes them very seriously, even if they are full of wild accusations. But Hamish fears that they might lead to something deadly. His instincts prove correct when the town's postmistress is found hanging from a rop ...more
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Published July 31st 2007 by Grand Central Publishing (first published 2004)
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(showing 1-30 of 2,849)
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Bobby Underwood
The Highlands are habitually rife with humor and delicious mystery between the covers of a Hamish Macbeth book by author M.C. Beaton. Constable for a patch of Scotland where gossip and superstition often exasperate our favorite bobby, Hamish nonetheless loves his fair Lochdubh and its quirky residents, and so do readers. The mysteries are certainly fun, but it is the atmosphere which keeps readers coming back time and again. Finishing a Hamish book always seems to lighten our load and remind us ...more
Yolanda
I am loving this series of mysteries set in Scotland and the bumbling redheaded Detective Hamis MacBeth. I love the setting of this book and the interesting characters that populate village life here in the North of Scotland and the sexual tension that abounds between Elspeth and him.
In this Mystery someone is sending poison pen letters causing people to die and Hamish must find out who and why along the way fighting off the advances of Jenny.
In Beatons description of the North of Scotland you l
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Marilyn
I like the character Hamish Macbeth and this series HOWEVER I have a problem with this particular book. Hamish remembers that a dentist had been killed in Braikie (Death of a Dentist) and that an elderly man, Fred Sutherland, lived above the dentist's office. He wondered whether Fred still lived in that same place. SERIOUSLY??? Certainly Hamish has found lots of dead bodies in various places, but HOW WOULD HE HAVE FORGOTTEN that Fred was killed not long after the dentist??? WHERE ARE THE COPY ED ...more
C.J. Prince
I was disappointed in #19 and was going to set Hamish Macbeth aside for a bit. However, driven by curiosity, I grabbed this one and found Hamish to be his own charming self.

M.C. Beaton is increasingly clever in plot lines and murder and the entangled complexity of who-dun-it.

Someone knows something about the locals, details that will humiliate, anger or set one off for revenge. Poison pen letters, details that can injure in a small town. All the ingredients for a murder.

Now, will Hamish ever g
...more
Kate
"Often underestimated and frequently unappreciated, Constable Macbeth loves his quiet life in the Highlands with his dog, cottage, and an unhurried cup of tea. Yet no copper in Scotland is faster when it comes to spotting a clue or a criminal. In this new adventure, Macbeth uncovers a vicious letter writer who uses the local post to spread seeds of gossip, fear ... and murder.

"Vacationeer Jenny Ogilvie comes to Lochdubh with plans to seduce perennial bachelor Hamish Macbeth. Terribly jealous of
...more
Will Bellais
Oct 29, 2007 Will Bellais rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: fans of Hamish MacBeth
Shelves: mystery
Just finished this one. Great fun story of prudish, religious types who let their fear of "bastard-hood" create a terrible chain of murders. The touch of Scotland in this one is strong. I always enjoy Hamish MacBeth -- and I've been M.C. Beaton long before she started the successful mystery series. (There are two continuing series).
Lexi
This is a general review of the Hamish Macbeth books. I've read more than 10 in a row now as I catch up on the series. The books vary from dull to interesting, frustrating to fun.

The central character, Hamish Macbeth is likeable. He is the main reason I keep reading the stories. The interaction of Hamish with the residents of Lochdubh sounds real, from what people who live in small towns have told me. As with other books in the cozy genre the criminal is always introduced by the first 1/3 of the
...more
Patricia Mack
I m endlessly delighted with this series and the main character, Hamish MacBeth. Clever casting, ingeneous story lines and gentle humor. .. what could be better
Maureen
An easy read, although not compelling. Overall, I prefer the Hamish Macbeth series to the Agatha Raisin ones, but not sure I will read any more of these.
Jerry
We have herein yet another (#20 of 29 so far) in Beaton’s light-hearted “Death of…” mysteries about Scottish village Lochdubh and its constable Hamish Macbeth. Predictability is part of the charm – and as usual we find Hamish outwitting his superiors but keeping a low profile, while his bachelorhood continues unabated despite many a fling after the females in his life. Most of the village regulars put in appearances as well.

In “Pen”, someone in nearby village Braike is writing hateful letters to
...more
Christine Keleny
I was on a trip south recently - yes, it's really hot at home so I took a vacation further south! - and on the trip the family was willing to listen to a book I blindly picked up at the library. Luckily it was a good book.

Genre: Mystery

Synopsis: When the residents of Lochdubh begin receiving poison pen letters, no one takes them seriously. But Constable Hamish Macbeth fears them, and his instincts prove correct when the postmistress is found hanging from a rope with a vicious poison pen letter
...more
Dale Safford
I listened to this book once, then had an unexpected trip come up and it was what I had available, so I heard it again, all within two weeks. It was just as good the second time! I love these characters. The dry humor is very entertaining, especially when mentioning lesbians, and an innocent schoolgirl responds "they didn't look Greek to me." :-) And the old biddies finding "thong" underwear, and telling the owner of them to "get a respectable pair of knickers that are tight at the knee." LOL Th ...more
Nathalie S
I love the Hamish Macbeth mysteries by M.C. Beaton! This is my second time through this particular title. I really like reader Graeme Malcolm who just personifies Hamish to me. Hamish is the village bobby in Lochdubh (pronounced Lor-Doo) in Scotland. He is brilliant but is not ambitious, preferring to stay in his little police cottage with his few sheep and hens and his dog. He was once promoted to sergeant and had to move to the drug infested Strathbane which he hated. In this book, poison pen ...more
Helene Harrison
ISBN? - 9781472105387

Publishing? - 2013 by Constable and Robinson (first published 2004)

Genre? - Crime / Mystery

Characters? - Hamish Macbeth / Jenny Oglivie / Miss McAndrew / Penny Roberts / Mrs Harris / Elspeth Grant / Priscilla Halburton-Smythe / Jimmy Anderson / Detective Inspector Blair

Setting? - Lochdubh (Scotland)

Series? - Hamish Macbeth #20

Title? - The writer of poison pen letters is found dead.

Character Analysis? - I wish we had seen more of Priscilla in this one. I miss her. As much as
...more
Lynne
Much better than 'Death of a Snob' but still nowhere near as engaging as the TV version. This Hamish is 'flame-haired'; Wee Jock is really called Lugs (major shock, that one); Alex is Priscilla; Isabel is Elspeth, and... there's no TV John, Barnie, The Major, Lachlan or Lachy Jnr, if fact there are none of the characters so familiar from the Rober Carlyle vehicle recently repeated on Watch.
Another cheapie from The Works, and fine for a soggy afternoon.
Beth
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Pat
It's always good to visit Hamish Macbeth and the community of Lochdubh again. As always, Hamish is looking for a mate - but not really! Murders abound and it is quite a twisted tale determining the perpetrator. Those tiny villages harbor some desperate individuals who will do anything to keep their secrets hidden!
Dharia Scarab

Since I don't normally write reviews unless I have something specific to say, here's the break down of how I rate my books...

1 star... This book was bad, so bad I may have given up and skipped to the end. I will avoid this author like the plague in the future.

2 stars... This book was not very good, and I won't be reading any more from the author.

3 stars... This book was ok, but I won't go out of my way to read more, But if I find another book by the author for under a dollar I'd pick it up.

4 sta
...more
Meredith
I usually listen to this series on CD; now I know I can read one of the physical books in the time it takes to fly from Providence to Philadelphia. As per usual, the solution to the mystery was rather odd, but I still enjoyed getting there.
Gerry
Hamish Macbeth is hard at work again, despite the attempts by one of his superiors to limit his potential.

Not surprisingly in Lochdubh there are murders taking place and these follow a spate of poison pen letters. One of the murdered ladies was suspected of being the writer of the letters so Hamish has his work cut out in trying to resolve the crime.

He has the assistance of Jenny Ogilvie from London, who is there to throw her cap at him to spite her London-based friend Priscilla Halburton-Smythe
...more
Jim B
Read with Scots Highlander accents by Graeme Malcolm.

The fun of Agatha Christie, but with interesting characters. Highland weather and other local color plays a role in this mystery. The single policeman has love interests.
Dolly
This is another entertaining mystery in the Hamish Macbeth series by M.C. Beaton. My mother-in-law and I have been reading this series fairly steadily now for the last couple of years and we have really enjoyed it. We only have a half dozen more books to go until we are all caught up. We like the characters and the stories are interesting and quick reads. This one was a bit violent and included some rather mad characters, but I was engrossed by the tale. Overall, a good cozy read.

new words: chei
...more
Marilyn
This series is very entertaining. I have been listening to the audible versions in my car and they are great for making commuting time pass pleasantly. (Eliminates road rage!)
Joseph J Vandermark
A good read.

very enjoyable. a good story and a good plot. a must read. it's amazing how Hamash gets into so many romantic situations.
Thalia
A little more than halfway through, I am...not sure. So far this is a fast-paced mystery, and I certainly want to find out whodunnit, but the writing is not totally up my alley. I'll certainly stick with it though, and may find others as quick mystery reads. I think I like more descriptive writing, even if it slightly slows down the pace. Ah well.

After finishing, and reading the first in the series, I am even more disappointed in the choppiness of the writing. I will be trying the series again,
...more
Karen
Set in the Highlands of Scotland, the continuing story of Constable Hamish Macbeth continues with multiple mysterious deaths in the quiet village of Braikie. Some of these deaths appear to be suicides but Macbeth finds clues of a homicidal nature in letters each victim received in the days before their demise. It's up to Hamish to determine the murderer out of almost a dozen possible suspects. The description of the countryside is outstanding and one can visualize the cold, windy sea breeze blow ...more
Nancy Wiltgen
Another fun mystery, with good twists and turns and secrets lurking just under the surface. Love Hamish!
Kathy England
Hamish McBeth murder mystery set in the Scottish Highlands.
Margaret
More light reading, same old framework but fun and easy to read.
Francine
It is more than a 3 but not quite a 4. I have followed Hamish MacBeth through all the previous books he is one of my favourite fictional character. Death of a Poison Pen is an easy read, simple story not the best but thoroughly enjoyable nevertheless. Hamish will find the murderer and outwit his nemesis Chief Inspector Blair once more. There is tension in his relationships with women either Jenny, Elspeth or Priscilla. As Elspeth said so well "Good hunting, but you'll find the prey is difficult ...more
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Watch a video of Marion discussing the casting of the AGATHA RAISIN Christmas special

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
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More about M.C. Beaton...

Other Books in the Series

Hamish Macbeth (1 - 10 of 31 books)
  • Death Of A Gossip (Hamish Macbeth, #1)
  • Death of a Cad (Hamish Macbeth, #2)
  • Death of an Outsider (Hamish Macbeth, #3)
  • Death of a Perfect Wife (Hamish Macbeth, #4)
  • Death of a Hussy (Hamish Macbeth, #5)
  • Death of a Snob (Hamish Macbeth, #6)
  • Death of a Prankster (Hamish Macbeth, #7)
  • Death of a Glutton (Hamish Macbeth, #8)
  • Death of a Travelling Man (Hamish Macbeth, #9)
  • Death of a Charming Man (Hamish Macbeth, #10)
The Quiche of Death (Agatha Raisin, #1) Death Of A Gossip (Hamish Macbeth, #1) The Vicious Vet (Agatha Raisin, #2) Agatha Raisin and the Potted Gardener (Agatha Raisin, #3) Death of a Cad (Hamish Macbeth, #2)

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