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Death of a Policeman (Hamish Macbeth, #29)
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Death of a Policeman (Hamish Macbeth #29)

3.66  ·  Rating Details ·  2,564 Ratings  ·  381 Reviews
Local police stations all over the Scottish Highlands are being threatened with closure. This presents the perfect opportunity for Detective Chief Inspector Blair, who would love nothing more than to get rid of Sergeant Hamish Macbeth. Blair suggests that Cyril Sessions, a keen young police officer, visit the town of Lochdubh to monitor exactly what Macbeth does every day. ...more
Hardcover, 272 pages
Published February 25th 2014 by Grand Central Publishing (first published 2014)
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(showing 1-30)
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Donna Radcliff
Mar 12, 2014 Donna Radcliff rated it liked it
This latest outing with the red-headed Scottish copper Hamish MacBeth makes me wonder if the author even likes her character. MacBeth commits crimes of his own (vandalism, B&E, blackmail) to solve his case and to keep his beloved police station from being closed. He wasn't very likable this go around. And as in the last few books, the plot has moved away from Lochdubh and it's quirky townsfolk. Oh, they (for the most part) make brief obligatory appearances as do his former loves Elspeth and ...more
Oct 23, 2013 Mark rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: fans of the Highland cozy
Welcome back to Lochdubh, the place that is loved so much by one Hamish Macbeth of the local constabulary and he never wants to leave. The man has solved so many crimes if it became common knowledge they promote the heck out of him. And that would mean Macbeth resigning rather than leaving his beloved village.

Once again all goes haywire when a copper called Blair, rather envious of one Hamish Macbeth, sends in a policeman he blackmails to spy on Hamish in order to get some dirt on this much loat
Feb 27, 2014 Eva rated it liked it
I’ve read all 29 previous entries in M. C. Beaton’s Hamish Mcbeth series, and I’m sad to say that this will probably be the last. I loved the humor of the early books, and while the series has always had some serious undertones, every book used to have at least a few places that would make me laugh. After reading this book though, I was feeling rather depressed. For me, the series has lost its charm.

It’s not just all the seemingly gratuitous violence (by the end of the book the body count is up
My loyalty to this series is that sometimes I just need a cozy bit of reading with a favorite character and setting containing all the old familiar places and people. Hamish MacBeth, the tall red-headed Scotsman is quite content with his life as the police constable in Lochdubh, and fans of this series are equally content to have Hamish remain in his current position, avoiding promotion and relocation to Strathbane, home of police headquarters for the area. While it might be comforting to Hamish ...more
Apr 26, 2015 Barbara rated it liked it
Detective Chief Inspector Blair is jealous of the success of Sergeant Hamish Macbeth of Scotland's Lochdubh police and is constantly trying to get the Lochdubh police station closed. Thus Blair dispatches handsome Officer Cyril Sessions to 'go undercover' and get evidence that Hamish and his partner Dick Fraser lollygag around and waste time. Cyril gets photos of Dick sleeping on duty and romances librarian Hetty Dunstable - who's happy to badmouth Hamish because he rebuffed her advances. Hamish ...more
Shirley Schwartz
Mar 02, 2014 Shirley Schwartz rated it liked it
It's still Hamish, but ..... I found that this book was a bit of a disappointment. I have loved Hamish Macbeth for a long time, and enjoyed all the books. I love Hamish and his idyllic life in Lochdubh. I love the recurring characters like Willie Loman and Archie MacDonald. It's like visiting old friends when I read a Hamish Macbeth mystery. But this book, I found, did a lot of jumping around and violent episodes kept on occurring with no lead-up or explanation. It felt like I was on a runaway t ...more
Sep 29, 2016 Fiona rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: library-books
Not a bad story, but I can't help but love Agatha far more than I do Hamish. Although Hamish is amusing in his own way Agatha really delivers something else when you are reading her. In this story, Hamish is trying to find out how and why a young police officer who was tasked to monitor Hamish's movements in the Highlands has been murdered. Suspicion automatically falls on Hamish. Can he clear his name?
I think I will focus more on Agatha Raisin in future.
Nov 10, 2014 Dagny rated it liked it
Shelves: beaton-m-c, read-2015
Death of a Policeman and the previous book in the series were not as much fun for me as most of the earlier entries. Threats of closing down his beloved station have been going on so long that I think they have caused Hamish to become too hardened and cynical for my taste. I'm not giving up on the series, but I hope the next book heralds the return of a more laid-back Hamish.
DEATH OF A POLICEMAN has convinced me that M.C. Beaton might just have finally lost her groove with the Hamish Macbeth series. Gone are the quirky almost mystic cosy qualities of Scottish life with a cheeky Hamish, and in its place is something much darker, almost heading into noir territory. Hamish himself may have taken a step away from cheeky and got nearer to nasty and unpleasant. I am really not totally happy with this change. When I read a Hamish Macbeth mystery, I like to chuckle at the a ...more
Jun 09, 2014 Fanficfan44 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I just finished this, the 30th (I can hardly believe I’ve known Hamish that long) outing in the Hamish MacBeth series by M.C. Beaton. I do feel as though these books are like visiting an an old friend. I’ve followed Hamish through his ups and downs in his romantic and professional life and through various threats to his beloved station in Lochdubh.

In this book, there is another threat to Hamish’s posting in Lochdubh. Small stations are closing all over and Hamish obviously doesn’t want that to h
Mar 21, 2014 Sharon rated it liked it
This was an odd installment of the Hamish Macbeth series. Everything added up in the end when the murderer of policeman Cyril Sessions was revealed but something was missing. Hamish was definitely more ruthless in this one with blatant law breaking and blackmail. Then there are the women, Elspeth and Priscilla, who are both becoming tiresome as Hamish will never end up with either one of them. I've pretty much given up on reading these for the mystery plot because they seem to be all over the pl ...more
Aug 23, 2015 Caroline rated it liked it
Shelves: cozy-mysteries
I gave up keeping track of murders when the body count hit ten. That's rather a dizzying amount of dead people for a cozy mystery, and several were completely unconnected to the plot. I'm all for sacrificing a character when it moves the story forward, but not merely for the sake of incorporating random violence. I've enjoyed every book in the Hamish McBeth series thus far, but I really felt like Death of a Policeman was written because there was a contractual obligation to turn in a book. While ...more
Una Tiers
Apr 06, 2014 Una Tiers rated it liked it
A strong start carried through half the book. The standard characters had only cameo appearances. Hamish is losing his affable charm when his motivation and remarks are inconsistent. More violence than usual.
An Odd1
Mar 06, 2017 An Odd1 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery
Amazing Highland scenery changes, from sudden wild storm to clear sun, while characters are reliably consistent. Intuition and epiphanies keep quiet country-loving hero Hamish ahead of nasty alcoholic superior Blair. Blair's informant, policeman Cyril, has jealous women and suspicious criminals on the list of his possible killers.
Jennifer Dombrowski
Oct 14, 2016 Jennifer Dombrowski rated it really liked it
I have read M.C. Beaton Agatha Raisin books and thought i loved them the best. I was hesitant to try Hamish MacBeth but am glad that i tried one as it was an excellent book!

I love the raise they use the Scottish dialect i guess one would call it. Very entertaining and i would have never guessed the killer! Very clever way of disguising the murderer!
Judy Lesley
It’s no spoiler to say that Constable Cyril Sessions is the dead policeman the title of this novel refers to. Even the book description tells you that much. Detective Chief Inspector Blair thinks he has come up with a foolproof plan to get rid of Sergeant Hamish Macbeth in the Lochdubh police station. There is a new initiative to reduce the size of the police forces throughout all of Scotland. If Blair can send Sessions to spy on Macbeth and get evidence of Macbeth and his policing partner, Dick ...more
Mar 10, 2014 Larraine rated it liked it
I've always enjoyed the Hamish Macbeth series although it has been uneven. With both Hamish and Agatha Raisin, the author seems, at times, to almost delight in humiliating them in print. Sometimes I wonder why an author would want his/her creation to be viewed as clueless. The last Hamish book before this one was in that vein. It seemed as if Hamish was being reduced to a cliche. However, this book resurrects the old Hamish. Yes, he's still looking for love, but it's not an obsession. He also do ...more
Randee Baty
I love to visit old friends. In his 30th outing, Hamish Macbeth is definitely that. An old friend. An old friend that I’m thrilled to be able to catch up with. And while I’ve never been to Scotland, I feel like I could move to Lochdubh and never miss a beat.

The Lochdubh police station is in danger of being shut down in the new cost cutting measures that the Scotland National Police Force is implementing. That would suit Detective Chief Inspector Blair just fine since his hate for Hamish knows no
Mar 31, 2014 Amanda rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
I've read all the Hamish Macbeth books that have been written and it seems, the last few years, the books have been lacking something.

While reading the story, there doesn't feel like there is a story, just story plotting ideas for the book. There's no real flow while you are reading. Most parts of the book was ok, I didn't really care that much for some of the characters during the story, and there was parts that didn't really need to be included since, there was no follow up at the end of the
Feb 18, 2014 Lora rated it liked it
Policeman Hamish Macbeth's archnemesis, DCI Blair, wants nothing more than to close Hamish's police station and put him out of a job. Blair sends cop Cyril Sessions up to Lochdubh to spy on Hamish, hoping that Cyril will get some dirt on Macbeth that he can report to Superintendent Daviot. However, Cyril ends up murdered, found on the beach. When vengeful librarian Hetty Dunstable reports to the police that she heard Macbeth say he would shoot Cyril, Hamish finds himself suspended from work. Ham ...more
Jenifer Mohammed
Feb 25, 2014 Jenifer Mohammed rated it it was amazing
Wonderfully fun and exciting story!

I loved this story. It definitely ranks as one of Beaton's best Macbeth mysteries. There are several mysteries that need to be solved, some senseless and shocking deaths, lots of blackmail, and thankfully, humour. Hamish and Dick still are living at the police station and are mistaken for a gay couple by a love interest of Dick's. Hamish still is caught between Priscilla and Elspeth. He comes to the rescue of Angela once again and of course, flirts and is pursu
Kelsey Hanson
Jan 10, 2017 Kelsey Hanson rated it it was ok
Shelves: mystery, fiction
I think this series is having an identity crisis. The stories in this series have always been light-hearted with plenty of focus on the quirky town people of Lochdubh. Now it has had several dark Law and Order-esque themes and they don't really work for me. If I wanted to read something gritty, there are a ton of other crime writers that are better at writing in that genre. Also, I'm getting really sick of Daviot and how he seems to constantly impede investigations for reasons that are not great ...more
Mar 12, 2014 Kay rated it it was ok
There have been 30 of these books and I've read them all. Why? They are all the same. I swear the author has one story in the computer and does a seek and replace with names! When a character might be called upon to explain some totally off the wall happening the explanation is "I forgot". Suspend logic and read these stories if you dare.
Feb 01, 2014 Kyrie rated it liked it
It's a good Hamish tale - with lots of odd twists. If you like the series already, then this one will make you happy.

It's a wonder anyone in Scotland gets married - given the misunderstandings that all the police there seem to have with assorted women.

It's also a wonder that Blair and Daviot manage to keep their jobs.
Mar 03, 2014 Steve rated it liked it
Not sure if I have been away from the series for too long, but the book jumps around too much. Still like the characters and setting and finished it quickly, but not something I would recommend unless you have already been reading the series. If so, no reason to stop now
May 03, 2016 Geri rated it really liked it
Love all the Death of books.
Feb 12, 2014 Carol rated it liked it
Shelves: cozies
OK, although it seemed to come off the rails in the epilogue. As Hamish would say, "Whit?!"
Mar 02, 2014 Joan rated it it was amazing
More than 5 stars! Best book of hers ever.
Dec 03, 2016 Linda rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: borrowed, fiction
Another great read in the Hamish Macbeth series, not many more to go now.
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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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Other Books in the Series

Hamish Macbeth (1 - 10 of 32 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)

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