Prof. Peter Shandy of Balaclava Agricultural College (Rest You Merry) is soon on the scene when there's a murder over at the Horsefall farm: hired-hand Spurge Lumpkin is horribly dead from burning quicklime--substituted for regular lime in the spreader. And Peter finds an implausible cornucopia of possible motives. Is Spurge's death just another in a series of pranks meant to force the ancient Horse-falls into selling their land? Is it connected to Spurge's chatter about buried Viking treasure beneath a runestone on the Horsefall property? What about Spurge's cousin, who wants the Lumpkin inheritance? Or the younger Horsefall generation, eager to make the old folks more dependent? And after more violence--including an exploding compost pile--yet another motive surfaces, unsatisfyingly, at the last minute. As in other recent MacLeod mysteries, in fact, the mystery here is seemingly far less important than the cutesy humor--this time with randy oldsters, Swedish accents, and funny names providing some of the wheezy comedy. So real mystery-buffs should look elsewhere, while those partial to MacLeod's strained but lively silliness will not be disappointed.