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Death of a Liar

(Hamish Macbeth #30)

3.76  ·  Rating details ·  4,033 ratings  ·  488 reviews
From the author of the Agatha Raisin television series...

Death of a Liar: A Hamish Macbeth Mystery

Sergeant Hamish Macbeth is alarmed to receive a report from a woman in the small village of Cronish in the Scottish Highlands. She has been brutally attacked and the criminal is on the loose. But upon further investigation, Hamish discovers that she was lying about the crime.
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Published February 3rd 2015 by Grand Central Publishing
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Laura Steinert He already found the right woman to marry. Highland pride just keeps him from marrying her.
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Average rating 3.76  · 
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 ·  4,033 ratings  ·  488 reviews

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Aug 23, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It's always a pleasure to read the newest Hamish Macbeth book and this is the thirtieth in the series. The plot is not the point. The storyline wanders around until Hamish manages to solve the crime, often through luck or coincidence. The point is to spend time with Hamish, the crazy group of villagers, and Hamish's current infatuation and current live-in coworker. Over the years I've developed an affection for Beaton's Highlands and the characters that populate it. ...more

In this 30th book in the 'Hamish Macbeth' series, the Scottish detective investigates a woman's murder and a couple's disappearance while navigating his complicated personal life. The book can be read as a standalone.


When a woman in the Scottish village of Cronish falsely reports that she was raped Sergeant Hamish Macbeth thinks of her as the 'woman who cried wolf' and ignores her next call for help. Unfortunately her body is soon found in her house and her death seems to be connected with
Magdalena aka A Bookaholic Swede
This reading experience was a bit...odd. I was expecting a cozy British mystery, but what a got was a British mystery book that was apparently trying very hard to be funny, but failed. At least for me it failed. There were so many weird things happening all the time, two spinster sisters accusing the main character, Hamish Macbeth of being a Casanova every time he was seen with a woman, a woman getting bit by a fox, a woman finding a dead body and then she stumbles and hits her head and dies, et ...more
Una Tiers
Feb 05, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Beaton's plot is better in this book than it has been for a while. The plot wanders but twists too. The joy in the story in probably the visit with the regular characters. ...more
Jan 20, 2015 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
A "must read" only for die-hard followers of the series. Alas, I no longer find Hamish as congenial as I did early in the series. I don't know which of us has changed, but I doubt we'll be meeting again. Hamish seems to me to have become somewhat bitter and set in his ways, the male version of the archetypal old maid. The best part of the book was the story about the fox, near the end. ...more
Jan 12, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Author M.C. Beaton is hilarious to follow on Facebook. Give it a try. The same humor is utilized in her Hamish MacBeth and Agatha Raisin books. I love Agatha to pieces and Hamish is also quite a character!

The Hamish MacBeth books are always fast paced and Death of a Liar is no exception. Hamish is still the head policeman at the Lochdubh Station in the Sutherland region of Northern Scotland. Beaton describes this region so beautifully as well as realistically with its harsh cold and wind. In win
Dec 03, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: fans of the cozy mystery & the Highlands
Hamish MacBeth is back on the case when he rushes to some small vilage-ish where a woman called for his help claiming to have been raped. It turns out that the woman has too large a fantasy and has done so numerous times in the past, she is well known for fibbing. So when the woman calls again and claims that there are intruders in her house Hamish kinda does not believe her. The next morning he feels a bit guilty and does go out there to have a peek and the lady who cried wolf once too often is ...more
May 23, 2017 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I do so enjoy MC Beaton titles as a rule but this one was not in the same class as the others. The plot was wandering all over the place, so much so I wondered what the main thrust of it was, and Hamish Macbeth was more interested in his love life and the various women that he thought he fancied and his own domestic arrangements at the police house than he was in policing the district. So all in all it was a somewhat disappointing read.

The death of the liar is an isolated incident in the early s
Jun 23, 2015 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: beaton-m-c
A pleasant read. Everything seems to move along at a leisurely pace in the Highlands with the occasional flurry of crime. Poor Hamish, he can't catch a break where the women in his life are concerned. At least he is beginning to realize that it could be his own fault. ...more
Kristi | Hidden Staircase |
M.C. Beaton's Hamish Macbeth series is one of my favorites, and her latest book does not disappoint. The charm of these books is not the mystery itself, but Hamish and his relationships; particularly with the people of Lochdubh. Death of a Liar focuses on Hamish and the police force for the most part, with a little Lochdubh sprinkled here and there throughout. As always, Detective Chief Inspector Blair is out to steal the spotlight from Hamish, while Hamish just wants to be left alone to his sma ...more
Nov 17, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Sep 11, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mysteries
Goodness knows I love Hamish, and all the murders and craziness that he seems to attract. But for the love of all that's holy, we need to find him a woman! This book frankly addresses the bad luck he's had with the ladies, as Hamish tries his luck one last time with Priscilla, Elspeth, and even a couple of new ladies that meets. Poor Hamish! His ill-fated dates overshadow the string of murders and the drug ring that is causing problems throughout his beat, but honestly, I'm not reading these for ...more
Oct 01, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
You would think that this series would get old, but Beaton's Hamish Macbeth doesn't disappoint. A policeman in the Scottish Highlands, Hamish gets mixed up in all kinds of murders and mayhem. A quick read. ...more
Jammin Jenny
I enjoyed this story set in the highlands of Scotland with police officer Hamish Macbeth. A woman who cried wolf once to often is found murdered and Hamish has to sort through the lies to figure out what happened. I love Hamish's wit and ability to sort through the clues to find who did it each time. ...more
Mar 23, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: reviews
An entertaining romp in the Scottish Highlands, Hamish Macbeth is back for his 30th adventure in Death of a Liar and he doesn’t appear to have aged at all, the writing and ideas are as fresh today as they were when they began with Death of a Gossip in 1985. Funny, charismatic and a real cad, Macbeth is one of those literary characters you simply devour and can't wait to read his next adventure.

As reviously mentioned (above) a woman calls Hamish to report a crime, she’s been raped, but when Hamis
Jan 31, 2015 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: e, cosy-mystery
M C Beaton enjoys international acclaim with her Agatha Raisin and Hamish MacBeth novels. I have read all of them but, sadly, think she should now wind these series up once and for all.

There are several reasons why I have come to this conclusion... Firstly, and most importantly, they try too hard to be funny but no longer make me laugh: Hamish has become an extremely selfish and disagreable cynic with a one track mind, who treats women as mindless, disposable entities. Then it is hardly an exag
Jan 13, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Here’s your chance to head for the Scottish Highlands and meet an old friend, Hamish Macbeth, and if you don’t know him yet, join him at the pub for a wee sip.

Hamish Macbeth, police sergeant at his Highland outpost, investigates a woman claiming she had been brutally raped, only to find she is a well known liar in her village.

Then a new couple moves to town, yet unlike other new comers, they are rude and nasty to Hamish and the other townspeople – when they disappear, and when one is found partl
An enjoyable read with an interesting story plot. I always look forward to a new Hamish Macbeth story each year. The character is fun to read, between his constant falling in and just as fast, falling out of love with either Elspeth or Priscilla. It makes you wonder, if or when, Hamish will make up his mind between which one he loves. I'm glad to see, Sonsie and Lugs, Hamish’s pets, playing a bigger role in this story than they have in the last few books. Hamish, and the rest of the cast, is in ...more
Dec 31, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
One of the most fun of the Hamish Macbeth series, this one features both of Hamish's ex-fiancées and some other girlfriends besides, none of whom makes much progress but it is cheering to see the coffees and dinners and a bit of yearning. This one also has a couple of slapstick scenes that are delightful, if, like slapstick must, overdone. Wonderful rollicking read! What happiness to hang out with Hamish for a while--this is one of the best of them! ...more
Dawn Michelle
Oh how I love these books - this one kept you guessing and had Hamish all over the place. The narrator is also very good and I enjoyed this one very much!!
Jan 09, 2015 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: light, netgalley, mystery
A light mystery built around local characters (in both senses of the word) and set in the Scottish highlands - about as far north as you can go on the mainland. It's well into an established series, none of which I've previously read, so I expected to flounder a little with characters and subplots, but that wasn't the case: there wasn't enough depth for floundering. Gentle paddling, maybe.

I felt a lack of subtlety all through it, and couldn't subdue my internal critic enough to find any enjoymen
Feb 10, 2015 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Kai Charles(Fiction State Of Mind)
Coyer Birthday Bash

I'm continuing my deep dive into the Hamish myseries. I can't believe I'm at the 30th!

In this volume Hamish is dealing with a woman who is a known liar. It starts when he gets a call from a woman saying she has been raped. When Macbeth gets to the victims house it turns out she has lied. So when she calls the next night saying someone is breaking in her house Hamish hangs up on her.

The next day the woman is found dead and Hamish begins to unravel a large mystery as the bodies
Aug 24, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
In Death of a Liar, Hamish finds himself dealing with a fantasist, a con man, death by fairies, and international criminals.  As he investigates, he also deals with the never-ending saga of his love life.  Old loves Priscilla and Elspeth make appearances along with new romantic interests, Anka and Christine.  Dick, Hamish's constable, has his own significant story line and it was nice to see him get a good story.  In addition, Blair is up to his old tricks, trying to discredit Hamish and get him ...more
Jul 12, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery-suspense
While it may seem that not much new territory can be covered in the 30th book of the Hamish Macbeth series, I still find the twists and turns and clues of the story to be enjoyable and there are still surprisingly many new scenarios. I've had it with Detective Inspector Blair, though, and I was so frustrated that when Hamish came in to some money, it wasn't used toward him potentially buying a place in his beloved Lochdubh or nearby. ...more
Dec 02, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Another enjoyable read about the amusing and endearing Macbeth, the Highlands copper who solves more crimes and maneuvers to avoid a career promotion so he can remain in his beloved village.
This was one of my mom's favorite series and so I thought I'd give it a try. Set against the picturesque Scottish Highlands, murder abounds. And while this sentence alone may evoke thoughts of beauty and lush greenery, that alone is about all I liked in this mystery.The main character, Hamish Macbeth was a foil of himself, at both points both generous to neighbors and mean and inept with closer friends. He spent too much time pondering the likelihood of pursuing romantic relationships with three ...more
Regina Spiker
My very last Hamish Macbeth book read, out of order, lol...I will miss this lanky red-headed police constable and the cast of quirky characters set in the small Scottish highland town of Lochdubh.
Feb 06, 2015 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition

Aargh. I have read so many of Beaton's books that I automatically select the next one. After reading this one, however, I think Beaton has run this series about as far as it can go without a redirection. I suggest she marry off her protagonist and all his fine ladies and the either redirect the series or end it. This book read like Keystone Cops in the Highlands, plied well with alcohol.

Beaton adds some new characters in this book, of which at least two or perhaps three appear to be there for m
Cindy Rollins
Jun 14, 2015 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2015, mysteries
Ok, I read this because I had read the other 30 books in the series and just like the one before it this one felt like it was just a hack filling in the formula. There is really no reason on Earth for anyone to read these unless they are already reading the series and they happen to walk into the library and the book is displayed in their face making them feel somehow incomplete if they do not read it because they have read the others.

I still like Hamish himself and getting a few insights into
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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 Scottish Da

Other books in the series

Hamish Macbeth (1 - 10 of 34 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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