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by M.C. Beaton

Pub Date: Feb. 22nd, 2012
ISBN: 978-0-446-54736-9
Publisher: Grand Central Publishing

An innovative plan to increase tourism in the Highland town of Braikie goes terribly wrong.

Mary Leinster, a newcomer to Lochdubh, has turned the beautiful town property of Buchan’s Wood into a tourist attraction she’s dubbed “The Fairy Glen.” At first all goes well. Busloads of tourists swarm over the glen without bothering the nearest neighbor, wealthy, crotchety Mrs. Colchester. But things take a turn for the worse when a young boy almost drowns in the pool and the glorious and popular Kingfisher is found hanged. Lochdubh Constable Hamish Macbeth, called to investigate, is shunted to a minor role when first the bridge in the glen collapses and then Mrs. Colchester, propelled like a rocket through the glass dome of her house, falls to her death. Hamish, the victim of a long string of failed romances, naturally falls for the stunning Mary, who claims to be on the verge of divorce. Still, he must keep her on the suspect list when he learns that Mrs. Colchester left her money for upkeep on the glen at the expense of her hard-pressed daughter and son-in-law, though they do get the house and its valuable contents and appear to have a sound alibi. Not so their two strange children, who have been busy making mischief while staying with their grandmother.

Beaton combines an influx of quirky characters with her old favorites (Death of a Chimney Sweep, 2011, etc.), even though the plot this time is a wee bit far-fetched.