Mysterious, Feb 2004, 23.95, 256 pp.
Someone in the small Highland town of Braikie has instituted a poison pen letter writing campaign going so far as to accuse Police Constable Hamish Macbeth of having an affair with the minister's wife. Although nobody is taking it seriously, Hamish knows it is just a matter of time before someone gets very angry and violence could be the result. When the post mistress Miss Beatie dies with a poison pen letter near her body, the police rule it a suicide.
Hamish doesn't think it is suicide and an autopsy proves him right. The thirty something year old women was poisoned and he doesn't have a clue who the culprit could be. When the retired school mistress is killed, the victim of several knife wounds Hamish knows instinctively the two killings are linked but he needs some help. His ex-girlfriend's girlfriend and the local reporter are more than willing to help the constable out.
This is the twentieth Hamish Macbeth Mystery and the series is as fresh, witty and upbeat as the day the first book in the series was published. Hamish takes his job very seriously but in his personal life when it comes to romance, he is, to put it bluntly, a doofus. This makes him adorable and endearing to readers who hope that just once he winds up with the woman he truly loves. This mystery has a fast paced plot and a descriptive look into the culture of a small Highlander village which makes DEATH OF A POISON PEN a treat not to be missed.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner