cover image Beating About the Bush: An Agatha Raisin Mystery

Beating About the Bush: An Agatha Raisin Mystery

M.C. Beaton. Minotaur, $26.99 (288p) ISBN 978-1-250-15772-0

At the start of bestseller Beaton’s winning 30th Agatha Raisin mystery (after 2018’s The Dead Ringer), Albert Morrison, the chairman of an English company that manufactures batteries, hires PI Agatha to find the saboteur responsible for burning down the company’s R&D department and with it the prototype of a highly anticipated new product. In the course of her investigation, Agatha comes across the body of Mrs. Dinwiddy, Morrison’s longtime assistant. The blunt-force trauma to the head in the shape of a hoof points to the company’s pet donkey, Wizz-Wazz. Agatha concludes Wizz-Wazz is innocent after discovering an ashtray made from a donkey’s hoof. Disapproving of the subsequent save-the-donkey PR campaign Agatha initiates, Morrison fires her, but this only strengthens her determination to solve Mrs. Dinwiddy’s murder. The obnoxious, rude, and outspoken Agatha may not appeal to every reader, but cozy fans with a taste for the silly and the offbeat will be gratified. This long-running series shows no sign of losing steam. Agent: Barbara Lowenstein, Lowenstein Assoc. (Dec.)

Correction: An earlier version of this review incorrectly stated this was the 29th book in the series.