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Death of a Prankster


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About the Author

M.C. Beaton lives in the Cotswolds with her husband. She writes the Agatha Raisin mystery series as well as the Hamish Macbeth mystery series.


Scottish constable Hamish Macbeth, following Death of a Gossip in his seventh case, once again nails a murderer despite the crude bullying and dim detecting of his nemesis and superior, Chief Detective Inspector Blair. Wealthy local Andrew Trent, notorious for practical jokes that have far exceeded short-sheeted beds and whoopee cushions, has summoned his would-be heirs to his northern mansion with the false announcement that he has only a short time left to live. Braving the Highlands winter are his adopted son and his TV-star fiancee, two spinster daughters, his brother (with his brittle wife) and his scientist stepson (with his punk, pink-haired girlfriend and colleague). After Andrew is murdered in a prank that backfires, Macbeth wends his way through a tangle of family squabbles and secrets. Another murder and an attempt on a third victim follow in this readable tale that doesn't, however, bear close scrutiny. Illogic abounds and the final confession is precipitated by a wild coincidence. (June)

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