Sunday, 10 August 2014

Agatha Raisin and the Quiche of Death

I bought this book from an Oxfam bookshop, mostly because the cover appealed to me (I much prefer illustrated covers to photographs, and the line-drawing and quaint style caught my eye). I'd heard a bit about the books, so decided to give this one a try!

Agatha Raisin and the Quiche of Death

Image sourced from goodreads


M.C. Beaton


Cosy mystery

One-sentence summary:

Agatha Raisin quits her job as a high-flyer in a London PR agency to move to an idyllic little village in the English Cotswolds, but the quiche she enters into a local competition ends up poisoning one of the judges.


I expected this to be a light-hearted and fun read (as you would expect from a good cosy mystery), but was disappointed at the lack of humour. I did spot a few feeble attempts at it, but a very far cry from the 'laugh out loud romp' I was promised by other reviewers.

The main character, Agatha Raisin, was clearly not supposed to be likeable at first, and likeable she certainly wasn't! I know that was the point, and that she was meant to grow on the reader gradually as her character developed, but I found that it just didn't happen for me. In fact, none of the characters really appealed to me at all, which I found a little disappointing. I was left wondering why I was supposed to care at all about what happened to them. The only (very minor) exception was Bill Wong, the detective, who did have one or two good lines. The majority of them were completely two-dimensional, and seemed more like caricatures than actual human beings.

I found the writing style to be really clunky, and the language was nothing special at all. I know it was never intended as great literature, but the writing style didn't even read smoothly. I was always aware that I was reading a book, rather than ever being able to get lost in the pages, which is something I particularly look for in novels.

In fact, everything about it felt rather basic, especially the plot. It was completely obvious who the killer was going to be, and Agatha did so many infuriating and predictable things (predictable for a bad novel, not for a real person!) that it was a struggle to get to the end!>

I sourced the image above from GoodReads, because I actually got rid of my copy. It was that bad.

Final thoughts:

Overall, the book wasn't terrible, but I certainly didn't find myself enjoying it as much as everyone else seems to be! Everything was just too predictable and flat, and it was a struggle to wade through the below-average writing. I don't think I'll read any more of them unfortunately, which is a shame because I also have a couple on kindle that I bought on sale... Oh well!

What did you think of Agatha Raisin and the Quiche of Death? Did you agree with my review? Can someone please tell me what the appeal of these books is??? Let me know in the comments.


  1. Aw bummer! My mom has been reading her books but I think she said she preferred her other series to this one and had a harder time on these. Hopefully the next read will be a better one :)

    1. I know! I so wanted to like this one :( My mum said the same actually, she enjoys the Hamish McBeth series but couldn't get into this one. I guess it's all a matter of taste, but I can't understand how these are so popular! Oh well :P Thanks for your comment :)

    2. It's crazy how that can be sometimes. I know I have authors where I just adore one series of theirs and really struggle with another one. Interesting how that can happen.


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