Honesty may not be the best policy if it makes your acquaintances want to kill you.
Sgt. Hamish Macbeth is enjoying the beauty of the Scottish Highlands along with his constable, Charlie Carter, when a trip to see a newcomer to the area ruins their day and many more. Although banker Paul English has only recently retired to the village of Cnothan, he’s already made an impressive number of enemies. Hamish soon sees why when English accuses him of dyeing his hair red. A youngster from Cnothan claims to have seen English in a compromising position with minister Maisie Walters, but she denies the story. All the while, the list of people English has insulted or defamed grows every day. DCI Blair, whose hatred for Hamish knows no bounds, is delighted to visit English when he calls to complain that the local police have been harassing him, only to be insulted and threatened himself for drinking on duty. The discovery of English’s body in a bog flushes out a legion of suspects. When Charlie, who’s giving up policing to move with his love to a croft in South Uist, departs, Hamish’s new constable is a reluctant spy for Blair. Hamish, who’s never gotten over having to release Sonsie, his wild cat, into a sanctuary, has found the company of Lugs and Sally, his two dogs, an incomplete substitute. So when a wild cat is shot, he rescues it, certain that it’s Sonsie even though everyone from his former girlfriends to the veterinarian says it’s not. The rescue fills Hamish with joy and makes him doubly determined to solve the murder of the man everyone loved to hate.
One of the most convoluted and striking in this venerable series (Death of a Ghost, 2017, etc.), whose fans will relish the newest complications in the hero’s chaotic life.