Agatha Raisin & The Wizard of Evesham – M.C. Beaton

I mentioned that of late I have been having a bit of readers block. One book that helped me through was the latest wonderful book group choice. I always find that when you have a reading slump there will be some titles, characters or authors that will get you through it. One series that will always get me through is Agatha Raisin by M.C.Beaton, I simply adore them, though shockingly haven’t read any for ages. I like to leave a break between them but this is ridiculous. They may not be the most literary or trendy reads but they are a true gem of a series. If you like mardy middle aged women who nosey at their neighbours, gossip about them, find them dead and then solve the murder with a nice cup of tea or a G&T then this series is for you.

The Wizard of Evesham is the eighth in the Agatha Raisin series and sees her back in her cottage in the Cotswold village of Carsley bored with the sweltering summer and life in general. She decides that maybe a new image is called for an in doing so she hears of a Mr John who all the ladies say cuts hair like a wizard. In doing so she meets this legendary Mr John and finds herself falling for more than his charming cuts, though this gets scuppered when someone decides to poison Mr John. Throw in neighbours who blanche at the victims name, a bruised heart and Sir Charles Fraith a one nightstand looking to start where they left off and help her solve the riddle Agatha has a lot on her plate. Will Agatha be able to find out who killed Mr John and why? She will need to get out of the murder victims burning inferno of a house first!

This was the perfect read to break my reading slump. It is also the perfect read if you like spending an autumn or winter evening giggling at gossip and trying to solve a murder with a nice cup of tea, or some sort of tipple, very like our heroine. I love all the characters and you can get through one of these in an hour or two. I adore Agatha as a character and always find as soon as I have finished one I am almost instantly finding the next and wanting to open its pages. This paragraph might tempt you more, it had me giggling…

She trudged home afterwards. There did not seem to be a breath of air. She opened all the windows. She looked at the silent phone. Could anyone have rung while she was out? She dialled 1571 for the Call Minder. ‘You have one message’ said the carefully elocuted voice of the computer. ‘Would you like to hear it?’

‘Of course I would, you silly bitch’ growled Agatha. There was a silence and then the voice said primly ‘I did not hear that. Would you like to hear your message?’

With quirky characters, murder and maybe I had finished this in the space of an hour or so and guess what. My reading block had completely vanished and I have been reading as normal ever since. Sometimes you need this complete reading pleasures, that might not be everyone’s cup of tea but are certainly yours, to get you back into the reading world don’t you? What books do you turn to?


Filed under Agatha Raisin, M.C. Beaton, Review, Robinson Publishing

15 responses to “Agatha Raisin & The Wizard of Evesham – M.C. Beaton

  1. Dot

    I love Agatha Raisin books, I haven’t read one for a while either but I agree that they are complete reading pleasures!

  2. I’ve not come across these at all, but it sounds as if they fulfil a similar purpose to the Miss Read books that I enjoy – i.e. a book by an author who has written a lot in a similar style so when you’ve read one or two you know you will enjoy the rest.

    Should you read them in order do you think?

  3. Oh these books are such fun and just what you need when you have reader’s block. Have just read the latest and loved it. Agatha is great and I am very fond of her.

    • Oh am glad that they continue to be fabulous, I was worried with so many they might loose their edge, clearly not! I might go against my own rules and read one out of order which is the Christmas one. Perfect Christmas Day reading am sure.

  4. This sounds like lots of fun! I’ll definitely look out for it and for that competition!

  5. They’re extremely quick, light and fun – and Penelope Keith who’s done them on R4 IS Agatha Raisin…

    This week I’ve hit my bit of reader’s block so I’ve turned to trashy crime fiction and am reading the 4th by Mother and daughter team P J Tracy, to get me in the mood for more literary fare afterwards.

  6. I turn to books I’ve already read many times before and know I love. I’m a serial re-reader – I’ve probably read some of my favourite books 10-15 times. (This is also good for insomnia.)

  7. I had a reader’s block a while back even though I had this HUGE pile to read and did what I always do, revert back to childhood favourites – Anne of Green Gables and lots of others by L M Montgomery and then I had a Frances Hodgson Burnett binge and it worked. Now back reading again.

    I sometimes think the brain goes into overload and just cannot assimilate anything new so a nice familiar or light read is just what is needed.

  8. Pingback: Good Day Sunshine |

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