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Death of a Cad (Hamish Macbeth, #2)
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Death of a Cad

(Hamish Macbeth #2)

3.82  ·  Rating details ·  7,087 ratings  ·  443 reviews
From the author of the Agatha Raisin television series...DEATH OF A CAD: A Hamish Macbeth MysteryWhen Priscilla Halburton-Smythe brings her London playwright fiancé home to Lochdubh, everybody in town is delighted . . . except for love-smitten Constable Hamish Macbeth. Yet his affairs of the heart will have to wait. Vile, boorish Captain Bartlett, one of the guests at Pris ...more
Paperback, 214 pages
Published July 1st 2004 by Warner Books (first published 1987)
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Best Cozy Mystery Series
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98 books — 15 voters

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3.82  · 
Rating details
 ·  7,087 ratings  ·  443 reviews

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Jason Koivu
Jul 24, 2017 rated it liked it
Okay, so that was a little better than the first book. Good enough for me to continue on with the series? Perhaps.

Small town constable, Hamish Macbeth solves another murder before the big boys at the bureau can suss it out. That seems to be an ongoing theme: seemingly slow-witted and ambition-free local bobby outdoes the top brass. A little bit unbelievable...except that I've worked under some really thick fuckers in my day, so yeah, I can suspend disbelief on this one for a bit longer.

The char
Murder Most Fowl When Priscilla Halburton-Smythe brings her London playwright fiance home to Lochdubh, everybody in town is delighted...except for love-smitten Constable Hamish Macbeth. Yet his affairs of the heart will have to wait. Vile, boorish Captain Bartlett, one of the guests at Priscilla's engagement party, has just been found murdered-shot while on a grouse hunt. Now with many titled party guests as the prime suspects, each with a reason for snuffing out the despicable captain, Ham
Oct 14, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
A pleasant cozy mystery that made for an ideal lazy Sunday reading. I didn’t quite enjoy this Mcbeth mystery as much as the first, but it’s short page count helps to keep the reader engrossed and can easily be read in a day.

The mystery itself is fun, as the vile Captain Bartlett is killed on a goose hunt, Mcbeath is convinced that fail play is in order.
I found quite a lot of the secondary characters to be annoying, so this story didn’t click aswell for me.
I found the solution to very satisfying.
These books are really quick, good, easy reads that are perfect for a lazy afternoon.

I loved the setting, first of all. i find some books set on the British Isles hard to follow, but this was quite easy to read. The characters experienced some growth in this book, though I really wish people would stop thinking of Hamish as simply a lazy person looking for freebies, he's actually a really good policeman.

Overall a great book that I finished in little time. Onto the next one!
Jan 01, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Death of a Cad is the second book in the Hamish Macbeth mystery series. Macbeth is the village constable in Lochdubh, Scotland. He's got a bit of a thing for the daughter of a local wealthy resident, Priscilla Halburton-Smythe. Imagine his disappointment when she brings home a fiance, a playwright from London with all the personality of a dead fish. Upper Class Twit basically. Priscilla's parents are glad to see their daughter not making goo-goo eyes at the local constable and settling down to a ...more
Julie  Durnell
Mar 01, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: england-uk, mystery
Three stars for the whodunit (which I did not come to right conclusion as to who dunnit!) and 1 whole star for wonderful Hamish Macbeth-swoon! I love the setting of Lochdubh too!
Jun 01, 2012 rated it it was amazing
I'm not sure what book is the first of this series, but this is the first one I read. Look, I am addicted. I have taken to calling people "ye auld pillock" rather than the usual names I call them. Hamish is kind of a mess, but I love him. I think I"ve read about 20 in the past month.
Lady Delacour
Found the second book
more enjoyable than the first.
Hamish Macbeth uses his charm
to interview the suspects
and solve the crime.
Narrator Davina Porter
is one of my favorites.
Clean except for some
mild Foul Language.
Oct 23, 2016 rated it liked it
Poor Hamish. His wee heart takes a bit of a beating when when Priscilla brings home a fiancé. Of course, people die and Hamish is the only one who can identify the killer.
In Death of a Cad, Hamish Macbeth's life takes a turn for the unpleasant. Hamish has long been smitten with Priscilla Halburton-Smythe but due to the disapproval of her parents, has never been able to express or act on that. It's part of what created some of the romantic tension for Hamish in Death of a Gossip. Unfortunately for Hamish, Priscilla comes back to town with a fiance in tow. Some of the local notables are invited up to the Halburton-Smythe estate for the engagement party but when one ...more
Jan 27, 2016 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 3-5
More a 3.5

My first outing with both Highland bobby Hamish Macbeth and Glaswegian author Marion Chesney under the pseudonym M.C Beaton, Death of a Cad, is a wonderfully readable, intelligent and enjoyable murder mystery - Hamish Macbeth is an endearing character if there ever was one! He is amative, captivating and the perfect guy to get behind.
Oct 07, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A charming murder mystery set in Scotland. My first read in the Hamish Macbeth series, but it is actually the second in the series.

It was short - I could have read/listened to this on a lazy Sunday.

Audio narration was very good, voices all done well. And having it read with an authentic Scottish accent was definitely a plus.

This was so much more risqué than the Agatha Raisin stories. Not all of it, just the bits that mentioned naughty business, mentioned it well! :) It was laugh out loud at som
Jan 10, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery
Always a delight to either read or listen too. A great writer of mysteries, Beaton understands her characters and settings so well. Thoroughly research and just pure fun.
Feb 09, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: audiobook, mystery
Character List
(view spoiler)
Oct 04, 2018 rated it really liked it
Another fun Hamish Macbeth mystery. In this tale, Hamish is heartbroken as his former love, Priscilla Halburton-Smythe returns to Lochdubh with a fiance in tow. Her snobbish parents arrange a house party to show off the prospective son-in-law, Henry Withering, a noted playwright. The guests are all part of the landed gentry in Northern Scotland, a small group that knows and despises one another. When the most disliked guest is murdered, Hamish goes on the trail of a clever murderer. Ms. Beaton a ...more
Oct 04, 2010 rated it really liked it
Beaton’s hero, Hamish Macbeth, is the town police constable, a rather lazy, unambitious, but happy man who often, because of his intimate knowledge of the community, manages to solve murders that have the more traditional CID inspectors baffled. It’s quite humorously written and makes fun of the English upper crust. The “Cad” is Peter Bartlett, who suffers a nasty accident while climbing over a fence with a loaded shot-
gun. Everyone assumes it’s an accident except for our hero, Hamish, the local
Sep 06, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Death of a Cad by M.C. Beaton is the second book in her Hamish Macbeth mystery series. I've read more of Beaton's Agatha Raisin books, but actually I think I might prefer the Macbeth series (don't get me wrong, both are entertaining reads.)
In Death of a Cad, the Halburton-Smythes invite a group of 'friends' to their estate in Scotland to celebrate the engagement of their daughter, Priscilla, to playwright Henry Withering. At the party, boorish cad, Captain Bartlett insults most of the people the
Death of a Cad was a definite improvement on the preceding Hamis Macbeth mystery. M.C. Beaton seems to have found her stride in the genre and the characters are far more developed. We learn more about Hamish and his object of affection, Priscilla Halburton-Smythe. We also receive further proof that both the Scottish Highlands and country houses are dangerous. Also dangerous are (view spoiler) and pushy fiances. (Naturally, as someone who has read many of the Regency novel ...more
Jan 25, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The village of Lochdubh, Scotland is one of my current favorite places. Between the uppity landed gentry, the local game poachers, and the seemingly hopeless romance between the intrepid Hamish and the lovely Priscilla, I'm eager to read every one of these diverting installments in this series.

This particular story has some of my favorite elements - snarky humor, an older femme fatale, and the poor, dead, cad who is mentioned in the title. When you combine these into a weekend estate party, it
Jun 20, 2017 rated it liked it
First sentence: Henry Withering, playwright, slumped down in the passenger seat of the station wago after another bleak look out at the forbidding landscape.

Premise/plot: Death of a Cad is the second mystery in the Hamish Macbeth series by M.C. Beaton. Priscilla Halburton-Smythe has brought her fiance home with her. They'll be a country house party to celebrate their engagement, or, else it's to celebrate his success as a playwright. Most of the invited guests are a pain. Henry included. No wond
Julie Davis
Jan 13, 2018 rated it liked it
I'd recommend skipping Death of a Gossip, the first book of the series, and beginning with this one. It has all the pertinent information and focuses much more sharply upon Hamish Macbeth, both as a policeman and as the hopeless wooer of Lady Priscilla. It is a light mystery of the "cozy" variety but the Scottish setting holds my interest as does Hamish himself, with his calm common sense and sharp eye for details that don't seem to fit together.
Jun 19, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Noch ein wenig flotter und unterhaltsamer ist der zweite Fall des Highland-Dorfpolizisten Hamish Macbeth, wenngleich der Plot einer "geschlossen Gesellschaft" aus Band 1 hier erneut zum Tragen kommt. Genau die richtige Lektüre für arbeitsreiche Tage; freue mich auf den dritten Band, der im November erscheint. (Juni 2017)
Nov 13, 2018 rated it really liked it
It's possible that I hate everyone at that house party. Except two. Maybe three. The rest, I hate. That's why I really didn't care who died, they were all horrible. Then I just keep going to find out who is responsible.
Apr 18, 2019 rated it liked it
Solid 3 stars. Significantly better than book one in the series, in plot, characters, and credibility. Still, for my taste, not up to the level of other Beaton series. I won’t mind reading another in this series though if it falls in my lap.
Jan 23, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2019-reads
We're getting to know Hamish better. I like him.
Aug 26, 2017 rated it really liked it
This is #2 in the series - much better than #1. Really enjoyed seeing the earlier stage of Hamish and Priscilla's relationship, even if I did figure out who the murderer was early on.
Kathy Jackson
May 09, 2015 rated it really liked it
Ah, another Hamish Macbeth story - and even better than the last! This one isn't written from one person's point of view which I liked better than the last. Hamish is quite captivating as he works to find the murderer, make some extra money and save the love of his life from a ghastly prig who she is marrying strictly out of loyalty to her parents.

It wasn't hard to pick out who the killer must be but I must admit the motive never entered my mind. Once I read it, I was like "duh" but while I had
Jun 07, 2012 rated it really liked it
Really fun mystery! I just wanted something light to read quick in the midst of reading some serious books, and doing some other work. This book was just what I wanted! I love British mysteries like these that are very well-written, clean, and humorous. I enjoy writing by Charles Todd, but those books which are written by two Americans are a bit darker. In this story, Hamish MacBeth gets involved in a murder that takes place in the home of the girl he is in love with, Priscilla...who has actuall ...more
Aug 20, 2013 rated it liked it
In the midst of moving to a different country and all the stuff that goes along with major life events, I haven't had a lot of time to read longer books, but I've been able to squeeze in some Hamish Macbeth. These are light mysteries, fairly predictable but still enjoyable if you have happen to have a soft spot for Lochdubh and its quirky characters. This is the second book in the series, and Hamish is better developed and generally more likeable than in the first book. Plus, we get to meet Pris ...more
Feb 18, 2016 rated it liked it
Priscilla comes home with a fiancé, there's a murder at the castle, Hamish ignores protocol, etc.

Grudging three stars because of the point where Hamish slut-shames Priscilla after he has shown up at her door in the middle of the night, invited himself into her room and lain down on her bed, then when caught by the fiancé, blames her for being skimpily attired and implies this is all her fault and sympathizes with the fiancé. Since Hamish is, in most respects, a traditional hero, these sort of th
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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 Smith & Sons Ltd. While bookselling, by chance, she got an offer from the Scottis

Other books in the series

Hamish Macbeth (1 - 10 of 33 books)
  • Death of a Gossip (Hamish Macbeth, #1)
  • 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)
  • Death of a Nag (Hamish Macbeth, #11)
“Mrs. Wellington was wearing a voluminous flannel nightgown when she answered the door. Hamish was glad Mr. Wellington had found God, because it certainly looked as if he would need to wait until he got to heaven to get his reward.” 1 likes
“like most thin-skinned people who have been snubbed, he could not leave the snubbers alone.” 1 likes
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