M.C. Beaton, Death of a Perfect Wife (1989)

The other night I picked a more serious crime story from my shelf after a long exam day, but when I had tried to read the first paragraph five times, I put it down and settled for this one.

This Scottish cosy mystery is the fourth Hamish Macbeth mystery.

Hamish Macbeth is frustrated because his great love, Priscilla Halburton-Smythe, has brought a couple of friends with her home, including the ´hairy ape´ who turns out to be her successful, new fiancé.

Other newcomers are Mr and Mrs Thomas, the enthusiastic and energetic English couple, who buy a derelict, Victorian villa and try to make it into a Bed & Breakfirst. Unfortunately, Trixie Thomas is far from content with reforming the house and her overweight husband, she does her best to change the whole village. The bored housewives embrace her newfangled ideas about health and food, but their husbands are aghast at the idea of giving up their guilty pleasures.

So several clouds threaten Hamish´ perfect Lochdubh idyll, but a couple of chapters go by before disaster strikes, chapters where the writer creates an atmosphere of apprehension while we get to know the quirky characters.

This story was absolutely perfect for my needs this week, but I promise I will revert to a more varied reading diet soon. I bought the book myself.

About Dorte Hummelshøj Jakobsen

I am a Danish teacher. In my spare time I read, write and review crime fiction.
This entry was posted in cozy mystery, M.C. Beaton, review, review 2011, Scottish. Bookmark the permalink.

15 Responses to M.C. Beaton, Death of a Perfect Wife (1989)

  1. Margot Kinberg says:

    Dorte – The Hamish Macbeth series is a terrific cosy series in my opinion. I’m glad you chose to read one of them. And I’ve always like the variety of quirky characters that appear in them. Thanks for sharing this one :-).

  2. I have read a Macbeth novel before. They are quite nice reads. I can’t say I can read the novels all the time but when I want something not so serious, Beaton is a great pick.

  3. Betteskov says:

    Dorte, you are a true heroine! Thanks for the best travelling tip ever! i can´t wait to tell you about all the stuff I saw in Edinburg 🙂 A really interesting city, and I totally understand how it must inspire a crime fiction writer 🙂

  4. Barbara says:

    Dorte, Sometimes only a light cozy will do. When I’m done in, that’s exactly what I look for. It’s refreshing, isn’t it?

  5. Patti Abbott says:

    Loved the TV series but never read the books.

  6. I have been put off these by having seen a couple of episodes of the TV series first – which I didn’t like much. But I agree there are times when only a nice light cosy read will do

  7. I hereby forbid you to ever apologize for reading a Hamish book again!

  8. Bill Selnes says:

    Dorte: I have enjoyed the series. Living in rural Saskatchewan the characters feel real to me. I found the T.V. series alright but could never reconcile the T.V. Hamish with the image I had of him from reading the books.

  9. Margot: I think this is a series I can learn a lot from.

    Clarissa: it was the perfect choice for this weekend, I can assure you.

    Jane: oh, I thought YOU would see that Edinburgh was a wonderful place, and I am glad I was right 🙂

  10. Barbara: yes, I really enjoyed getting away from it all.

    Patti: I think Midsomer Murders is the only series where I prefer the TV version, but we have not been able to watch Hamish Macbeth regularly so I don´t really know that one.

    Bernadette: funny so differently people react to it, but as I just said, I have never really watched him on TV.

  11. Karen: I am sorry if it sounded as if I apologized for my taste in cosies. I only meant to apologize that I had not varied my reviews for those readers wo don´t like them as much as we do 🙂 This series is terrific.

    Bill: that is often a problem about series, isn´t it? So when I say I also enjoyed the characters very much, I mean those in the book as I don´t know the others.

  12. Beth F says:

    I love the Hamish mysteries — light and fast reading can be the perfect foil for a stressful day.

    BTW: I’ve been subscribed here since the day you moved and I’m reading your blog almost every day. I have become a very bad blogger when it comes to commenting. I need to get back into the rhythm of letting my friends know that I’m still reading their reviews and posts.

  13. Beth, I am sorry if I sounded as if I were fishing for comments. I just noticed the other day that many of my blog friends did not seem to have noticed 😉

  14. Kelly says:

    This sounds like a series I need to get involved in. 🙂

  15. Kelly: it is a fine and well-written cosy.

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