Monday, June 6, 2016

Death of a Liar by M.C. Beaton

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. So when the same woman calls him back about an intruder, he simply marvels at her compulsion to lie. This time, though, she is telling the truth. Her body is found in her home and Hamish must sort through all of her lies to solve the crime.

Series: Hamish Macbeth Mystery #30 | Publisher: Grand Central | Release Date: February 2016 | Genre: Contemporary Cozy Mystery | Source: Publisher | Rating: 3.5 Cups

Challenges Read For: Pick Your Own Genre: Contemporary

It’s always a pleasure to rejoin Hamish Macbeth as he solves crime in the Scottish Highlands.
So, there’s quite a bit happening in this one. Hamish is sent to the neighboring village to investigate after a woman claims she’s been attacked. It turns out the woman’s crying wolf for attention. When she calls the next time, Hamish ignores her only to discover she’s been tortured and murdered. As Hamish investigates the crime, it seems to be connected to the murder of the Leighs. As more clues are uncovered, it seemed there’s more going on than meets the eye.
So, I’ve skipped around in this series and it’s doable, but I’m not sure that this one would be the place for a Hamish Macbeth newbie to start because of the stream of Lochdubh residents that pop in and out of the book. There’s really no explanation to go along with the eccentric residents and I think readers, not having met them in the previous books, will probably be annoyed by these crazy characters.  
I’ve always been a massive fan of Hamish Macbeth. He’s a bit quirky yet he’s such a fun character to get to know. Although you don’t really get a full sense of who Hamish is in Death of a Liar. Instead, he seems a bit girl-crazy. I mean, he’s always had a healthy love of the lassies but it’s almost as though he’s a teenage boy lusting for this one then that one and avoiding the one that’s actually interested in him. And, of course, his two main love interests—Priscilla and Elspeth—are still in and out of his life.
The mystery wasn’t one of my favorites in the series but it was okay. A few things I figured out early on and a few things kept me guessing. At times, it felt as though the body count was rising just to fill in the word count, so I could have done without some of the stuff that sort of felt like filler.
If you’ve read Hamish Macbeth before you’ll be able to recognize some of the characters and their traits, like Chief Inspector Blair who is always searching for a way to get Hamish fired. Although there’s a few new one’s thrown in as well.
I was slightly disappointed that so little of this novel took place in Lochdubh, the village where Hamish lives.
Overall, this was one enjoyable with a bit of humor thrown in. Not a top ten favorite Hamish Macbeth read, but still decent. Like always it provides readers with a look at the remote Scottish Highlands and the crazy residents as well as providing a nice little mystery.

Death of a Gossip
Death of a Cad
Death of an Outsider
Death of a Perfect Wife
Death of a Hussy
Death of a Snob
Death of a Prankster
Death of a Glutton
Death of a Travelling Man
Death of a Charming Man
Death of a Nag
Death of a Macho Man
Death of a Dentist
Death of a Scriptwriter
Death of an Addict
A Highland Christmas
Death of a Dustman
Death of a Celebrity
Death of a Village
Death of a Poison Pen
Death of a Bore
Death of a Dreamer
Death of a Maid
Death of a Gentle Lady
Death of a Witch
Death of a Valentine
Death of a Chimney Sweep  
Death of a Kingfisher
Death of Yesterday
Death of a Policeman
Death of a Liar
Knock, Knock, You're Dead (novella)

No comments: