Review: The Hamish MacBeth Series by MC Beaton

As I love the Agatha Raisin series, I thought I’d check out Beaton’s Hamish MacBeth books, too. I was pleasantly surprised to find that these are cozy mysteries as well – albeit with a male protagonist. Hamish is the police constable in the small Scottish town of Lochdubh (which I believe is pronounced “lock-doove”). He’s unlucky in love, a bit churlish, devoted to his pets, and always trying to fly under the radar of his stodgy superior. Hamish seeks to stay in Lochdubh and avoid promotion to a bigger town – he loves his little hamlet. The characters of the townspeople are reminiscent of the characters of the PBS series “Ballykissangel” – each unique and some a bit eccentric. Murder seems to find Hamish, and he outwits and solves the killers time and again.

These books are a fun read, and cleverly plotted. I was prepared to not love them as much as Agatha Raisin, but I do! I was excited to see that many have been made into a BBC series, which I rented from Netflix. The television series does not follow the books closely, but was a fun watch, nonetheless.

I highly recommend this series to those who like cozy mysteries! I get all mine from the library.

Review: Nefertiti by Michelle Moran

For my online historical fiction bookclub we read “Nefertiti” this month. What a wonderful read! This novel was a fascinating trip to Ancient Egypt. Nefertiti’s story is told through the eyes of her younger sister, Mutny (who in later real life becomes a Queen of Egypt as well). While the novel is lengthy (over 400 pp) it reads quickly and is intriguing. I didn’t want it to end!

I highly recommend this book to those who love historical fiction. I got my copy from the library, but later won one online – yeah!

I gave it 5 Stars!

Review: Tea Time for the Traditionally Built by Alexander McCall Smith

Tea Time for the Traditionally Builtย  is the tenth book in the No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency Novel series. I love, love, love this series, which centers on Precious Ramotswe, a woman in Botswana, as she opens her own detective agency and takes care of problems large and small. The language of these stories have the cadence of Africa, and the reader can feel the sun, the warmth, and the nature of the people through the language of these books.

In this installment, Precious’ “tiny white van” which has served her so faithfully is on its way out, much to her dismay. She is also hired to discover why a top football team (soccer in the US) is losing all its games. Parallel to these stories is the continued development of her assistant’s storyline: Grace Makutsi who is engaged to a furniture salesman and has formerly earned the coveted 97 percent on her secretarial exam. Other familiar faces: the two apprentices who never seem to graduate to become full-fledged mechanics, the foster children, and Precious’ husband, all are present as well.

Throughout these books, the sun shines, the people go on with their daily lives, and the characters develop. Each book is another chapter in their lives, often with the addition of new characters as well. I highly recommend these novels to those who love a light mystery and a story of human nature, told in an enchanting African style.

I give this series 5 Stars! I own all these books and my husband enjoys them, too. We usually pre-order them from Amazon.