A rather bedraggled fourth excursion for retired p.r. woman/amateur sleuth Agatha Raisin. She's happy to return to her thatched cottage in Carsely after a stint in London, still hoping for some serious affection from bachelor neighbor James Lacey, her partner in previous investigations (Agatha Raisin and the Potted Gardener, 1994, etc.). Meanwhile, in nearby Dembley, a group of walkers headed by pugnacious Jessica Tartinck is busily engaged in fighting landowners over rights-of-way for their country rambles. Challenged about one of his fields, Sir Charles Fraith of Barfield House sends a polite invitation for tea to the group, accepted only by mousy schoolteacher Deborah Camden, who proves attractive to Sir Charles but anathema to his houseman, Gustav. When Jessica is found dead in the contested field, Deborah asks Agatha's help, and Agatha's policeman friend Bill Wong encourages her and Lacey to join the Dembley Walkers -- a motley group that includes Jessica's ex-lover Jeffrey -- to find out what they can. Sir Charles and Deborah become an item of sorts, and a second walker is found dead, before Raisin and Lacey, hot on the wrong track, manage to effect a last-minute rescue that uncovers the culprit. With its near-perfunctory narrative style, aimless detours and endless cups of tea, this isn't one of Beaton's better efforts, but Agatha's romantic dreams may soon be fulfilled.