cover image Devil’s Delight: An Agatha Raisin Mystery

Devil’s Delight: An Agatha Raisin Mystery

M.C. Beaton, with R.W. Green. Minotaur, $26.99 (256p) ISBN 978-1-250-81616-0

The rambling 33rd outing for private detective Agatha Raisin (after 2021’s Down the Hatch), Green’s second collaboration with Beaton (1936–2019), finds Agatha and Toni Gilmour, her colleague at Raisin Investigations, driving through their beloved Cotswolds on their way to a policeman friend’s wedding. Then they spot a naked young man, Edward Carstairs, running down the middle of the road, and they soon learn that Edward, a member of a nudist club, has just found a dead body in the woods. Agatha and Toni follow him to the spot, but the body has vanished. Agatha decides to get to the bottom of things. To that end, Toni, who’s smitten with Edward, suggests that she go undercover—so to speak—at the Mircester Naturist Society. In addition, the pair look into a potential drug ring at a girls’ boarding school and a spot of pilfering from a brewery. Agatha at times comes across as a sad figure, not her usual confident, funny, strong-willed self, and the thin mystery plots offer little suspense. This one’s for established fans, who may appreciate catching up with the current status of Agatha’s ever-expanding team of once, current, and possibly future beaus. Agent: Barbara Lowenstein, Lowenstein Assoc. (Dec.)