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The Witches' Tree

(Agatha Raisin #28)

3.47  ·  Rating details ·  4,969 ratings  ·  629 reviews
The Witches’ Tree continues the tradition in M. C. Beaton's beloved Agatha Raisin mystery series―now a hit T.V. show.

Cotswolds inhabitants are used to inclement weather, but the night sky is especially foggy as Rory and Molly Devere, the new vicar and his wife, drive slowly home from a dinner party in their village of Sumpton Harcourt. They strain to see the road ahead―and
Hardcover, 277 pages
Published October 3rd 2017 by Minotaur Books
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Karen I'm hopeful with each new book that the old Agatha Raisin will re-
appear, but, as I am currently reading The Witches Tree, I'm thinking that it's not …more
I'm hopeful with each new book that the old Agatha Raisin will re-
appear, but, as I am currently reading The Witches Tree, I'm thinking that it's not Beaton's work, that it's that of a ghost writer. I could be wrong, but, IMO, the Agatha Raisin books have changed drastically over the last two or three years. I am plodding through The Witches Tree and can relate to your question. It's very frustrating and disappointing.
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Average rating 3.47  · 
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Rachel Hall
Nov 18, 2017 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Now very definitely in the autumn of her career, Cotswold based private detective Agatha Raisin whose years seems to decrease with each consecutive appearance, returns at the age of fifty-three in a monumentally disappointing twenty-eighth outing. Given that the cosy crime capers of Agatha and her supporting cast in the village of Carsley have been keeping me gently amused for well over a decade, it is with a heavy heart that I bid farewell to a series which has not so much tailed off, but falle ...more
The Flooze
I remember a time when I eagerly devoured every Agatha Raisin story. I delighted in Aggie's abrasiveness, in the villagers' eccentricities, and in the ludicrously daft situations the characters found themselves in. It added up to intriguing, uncomplicated entertainment.

Sadly, that's not the case any more. Riddled with inconsistencies, this installment cries out for a good line edit. Characters who have just packed themselves into a car are suddenly and magically storming out the vicarage door. N
Jul 26, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Okay, here’s my confession…

I want Agatha and Charles to get married and have a Happily Ever After.

I loved this latest entry in the Agatha Raisin series. The Witches Tree has a great mystery, some truly devious crimes, and it’s just pure fun.

Agatha is maturing. She’s still Agatha (no worries), but in this book she’s becoming more the person her readers know she can be. And her relationship with Charles is getting interesting…in a swoon-worthy way.

No worries – your favorite characters are there a
Bam cooks the books ;-)
*3.5 stars rounded up.

I read the last two Agatha Raisin books (#27 and 28) back-to-back and they did not suffer from doing that, although I kept looking for characters introduced in the previous book to reappear.

This story does take place immediately after #27--it is now late fall and the story begins in the village of Sumpton Harcourt in the Cotswolds on a dark and foggy night where a body is found hanging in the witches' tree on the square. Very spooky!

Sir Edward Chumble, a new arrival in t
Paul E. Morph
A largely aimless plot littered with irrelevant side-stories, factual errors, continuity mistakes and ignorant right wing soapbox moaning left me with a largely nonsensical mess of a book I couldn’t wait to finish... and not in a good way. The wild undulations in quality in this series is nothing short of staggering.

On the upside, Penelope Keith gives her best performance so far, audiobook-wise. She sounded more laid back than usual, which worked well, tonally.
Nov 14, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery-suspense
Another little caper with my old friend Agatha. I do wish there were a little progress in the characters' personal lives after 28 books, but all in all, I enjoyed it.

Find more reviews and bookish fun at
Claire Stoyle
Well, what can I say - not up to the expected standard. The sentences were short, the story jumped from one thing to another - one minute someone was dead, and then he wasn't. Names of people had changed, and the continuity was all out of sync. I felt the story needed bulking out and I was reading the annotated version. There was also too much focus on the love life of poor Agatha instead of focusing on the juicy bits of the story. I felt this was a book written for the fans far too quickly, and ...more
Jul 30, 2017 rated it liked it
My thanks to Netgalley and the Publisher for an opportunity to read an advanced copy of this book.

After the last book, ‘Pushing up Daisies’, I had hoped that MC Beaton has turned a corner and her Agatha Raisin series would get back to what they had previous been with multiple story lines that bounced back and forth effortlessly. Unfortunately, this book returned to the usual drivel that has become her norm.

Fifty-three year old Agatha is in her usual depressed mood when there is no man in her lif
Stephanie Luce
I thought Pushing Up Daisies was a bit disjointed but this latest Agatha Raisin adventure was even worse. Actually, it read as if two different people had penned it. Disjointed sentences and other grammatical errors that should have been corrected by the editors aside, this novel didn't even make sense at times. Very disappointing. ...more
Alayne Emmett
Jan 25, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Not having read any Agatha Raisin books before, I grabbed this one off the library shelf and was interested to see what it was like.
It was an ok read, not exceptional. It was a cozy mystery and read just like you’d expect. I found it entertaining and slightly silly but it also reminded me of the tv series Father Brown which I like to watch from time to time.
I actually guessed who did the murdering before I got to the end which made me realise that it didn’t rock my boat very much.
I noticed that
Susan Johnson
Sep 29, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: net-galley
A character in this book moved to the Cotswolds solely because he wanted the Agatha Christie experience. It's really the Jane Marple experience of village life and he was trying to experience that. I realized that is one of the reasons I like this series so much. I too want to live in a little village with other little towns all 5-10 minutes apart and gorgeous scenery. And never a shortage of handsome men, just ask Agatha Raisin.

I always am surprised she makes a living running a detective agenc
Aug 27, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Although I have enjoyed this series for all of the previous books, I felt this story line lacked something. In addition, the back and forth between Agatha and Charles seemed a bit pathetic instead of fun. The mystery involved murders occurring in a small, gloomy Cotswold town with a witches' coven. Not my favorite. ...more
Nov 08, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is one of my few remaining light-reading series. I haven’t found it objectionably disappointing and deserted it deep into the series, like I have a bunch of others. And it’s one of the exceptions to 3-stars reflecting that I would have been happier reading something else, or at least that my positive expectations were significantly squashed.

The vinegary, un-charming, age-anxious, man-obsessive, ferociously independent, lonely 50-something ex-PR-exec-turned PI-in-the-Cotswolds is a unique f
Oct 23, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, mysteries
In the Goodreads questions section for this title, there's an absolutely brutal commentary on this series. So, anonymous person who doesn't see the point in the series continuing, I have a solution for you. Call it quits with #28 in the series. Is there a reason you're still reading at this point?

No one ever mistook a Big Mac for fine dining, and yet sometimes only a fast food burger will do. That's how I feel about this series. It's literary comfort food, and no matter how ridiculous the plots
Nov 17, 2017 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I guess I am just done with this series. This is the second book in a row of this series that I finished thinking, what a bunch of nasty people and why did I think this was funny?
Feb 06, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Agatha Raisin is on the case! Recently she has become a bit bored. Her cases are all the same and her love life is in a slump. When she learns of some murders in a nearby parish she takes on the case for free. Of course, she is a business woman so as the bodies stack up she finds someone to foot the bill. The story moves around a lot and Agatha comes off as a bit flighty here and there, but it is still loads of fun with interesting characters.
Marilyn Fontane
Oct 12, 2017 rated it it was ok
Shelves: humor, mystery, mc-beaton
Okay, I admit I like Hamish better than Agatha, but The Witches' Tree was not even up to Agatha standards. Oh yes, I read it in one day. It was not awful; it had funny spots; it had a clever idea and plot, but it wasn't put together well. Too jerky, back and forth. I had trouble keeping the various characters together and separate--and I know all the regulars. Driving home from a dinner, the new vicar and his wife, Rory and Molly Devere, see a dead body of an elderly woman hanging from "the witc ...more
Una Tiers
What a disappointment, even after starting the book three times. With series, I often return to visit with the recurring characters. This book let me down. Agatha was vulgar and lost her appeal.
The plot was all over the place and I gave up trying to follow it. Some have suggested someone else is writing the books.
These have always been simple books but this one is very superficial and lacks detail. It rehashes old ideas and cliches from past books. I simply couldn't get into it. ...more
The Witches' Tree, the 28th Agatha Raisin mystery by acclaimed author M.C. Beaton, is so well written that it doesn't matter if one hasn't read all the previous books in the series prior to this one. Personally, I'd only read the first (The Quiche of Death) but did see all the episodes of the television series. Other than the location and some of the characters, new readers to the series should not expect the same warm/fuzzy feeling from the television shows to be evident in the books. The story ...more
Dec 08, 2017 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-this-year
I won this book through a Goodreads giveaway in exchange for a review. I've read several novels by this author so I thought I might like this one. It features Agatha Raisin, a private detective who is a man crazy yet self proclaimed feminist. The story is set in the Cotswolds and follows the traditional cozy mystery style complete with eccentric characters and a couple of murders to solve. What I did like about this book was the fast pace but the writing style was choppy and the revelation of th ...more
Charlotte Miller
Sep 06, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: arcs-2-read
It is entirely M. C. Beaton’s fault that I am sleep-deprived today, for I was up half the night reading The Witches’ Tree, the 28th volume in the magnificent Agatha Raisin series. Full of twists and turns, and the charming and ever-irascible Agatha, The Witches’ Tree is a must read for mystery fans. If you haven’t met the unforgettable Agatha yet, you really should. This is a fantastic series, and The Witches’ Tree is one of M. C. Beaton’s best.

(Advance Reading Copy obtained by request from Net
Josephine (Jo)
I was very grateful to goodreads giveaways and to M.C. Beaton for the chance to read this latest in the Agathat Raisin series!
As usual I thoroughly enjoyed Agatha Raisin’s latest case! M.C. Beaton brings Agatha to life so well and I feel so many different emotions when I read about her. I sometimes want to shake her and tell her to grow up and stop throwing herself at her latest crush; I feel sorry for her because she is lonely and feels left on the shelf. Sometimes she is annoying and sometimes
N Reads
Feb 02, 2018 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Where do I start on this atrocious book? Please, someone tell me that this was a draft and was published by mistake! Or perhaps, someone else wrote it.

I don't know how else to describe Agatha in this book other than she was just plain nasty. Above and beyond her usual nastiness! She's short-tempered and crabby. She looks at every man as potential husband material and lives dreamy-eyed for several weeks. When the romance either fails to take place or ends, she retreats into herself. She spends mo
Elisha Condie
Jan 22, 2018 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This was terrible! Terrible. I had no idea it was #28 in a series - my copy from the library looked like a stand alone. Agatha Raisin is a 50ish stylish lady in the Cotswolds who solves mysteries. And in this pretty little town an old lady is found hanging from a tree. Who dunnit!?
It's got the usual suspects of an English small town mystery that we've seen a million times before, which was all fine and good, but the reason I hated it was that all the female characters - literally every single
Oct 20, 2018 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: cozy, mystery
This story is all over the place, out of control and out of focus. Still, it’s Agatha Raisin, just not at her best. The story is not very compelling, despite all the dead bodies. Agatha is not herself; she is barely likable and her normal witty if sarcastic dialogue is missing. She dashes from one clue to next, with little thought or preparation. Even the threads of the story are so loosely woven, it feels like the whole thing will come apart before you finish reading it. What has happened to Ag ...more
Oh, dear. What happened? This is such a lackluster entry in one of my favorite series. The plot limps along, with most of it being taken up with Charles and Agatha wondering why they are always so mean to each other. Utterly charmless, with an odd emphasis on sex popping up throughout.
Julie Vellacott Massey
Not the Agatha Raisin I used to love - very disappointed with this book. Think it will be goodbye, Agatha, from me. Used to be the cosy cottage mystery I enjoyed, now it's crude and boring. ...more
Mar 23, 2018 rated it did not like it
I shouldn’t have wasted precious reading time, but I ever live in hope... .
Andrew “The Weirdling” Glos
This was my first attempt at an Agatha Raisin mystery. For the sake of my own frustrated sanity, it will probably be my last.

I cannot for the life of me figure out what’s supposed to make Ms Raisin a competent sleuth. She’s not especially observant. She doesn’t make connections others can’t. She holds no expertise in criminology or forensics. She doesn’t have special personal contacts which she alone can use and combine their work into a cohesive whole.

From the writing it would seem her main c
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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

Agatha Raisin (1 - 10 of 31 books)
  • The Quiche of Death (Agatha Raisin, #1)
  • The Vicious Vet (Agatha Raisin, #2)
  • Agatha Raisin and the Potted Gardener (Agatha Raisin, #3)
  • Agatha Raisin and the Walkers of Dembley (Agatha Raisin, #4)
  • Agatha Raisin and the Murderous Marriage (Agatha Raisin, #5)
  • Agatha Raisin and the Terrible Tourist (Agatha Raisin, #6)
  • Agatha Raisin and the Wellspring of Death (Agatha Raisin, #7)
  • Agatha Raisin and the Wizard of Evesham (Agatha Raisin, #8)
  • Agatha Raisin and the Witch of Wyckhadden (Agatha Raisin, #9)
  • Agatha Raisin and the Fairies of Fryfam (Agatha Raisin, #10)

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  Kerine Wint is a software engineering graduate with more love for books than for computers. As an avid reader, writer, and fan of all things...
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“Always works a treat. All these old stoves are raging alcoholics.” 0 likes
“Agatha doubled her rates and then said, “Of course, I halve them for a friend.” 0 likes
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