Death of a Poison Pen Book Summary and Study Guide

Detailed plot synopsis reviews of Death of a Poison Pen

Mysterious, Feb 2004, 23.95, 256 pp.
ISBN 0892967889

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.
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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.

Harriet Klausner

The review of this Book prepared by Harriet Klausner

Chapter Analysis of Death of a Poison Pen

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Plot & Themes

Composition of Book descript. of violence and chases 10%Planning/preparing, gather info, debate puzzles/motives 40%Feelings, relationships, character bio/development 30%How society works & physical descript. (people, objects, places) 20% Tone of story    -   very upbeat How difficult to spot villain?    -   Very difficult--no foreshadowing/clues Time/era of story:    -   2000+ (Present) What % of story relates directly to the mystery, not the subplot?    -   70% Kind of investigator    -   police procedural, British Kid or adult book?    -   Adult or Young Adult Book Any non-mystery subplot?    -   life in small town Crime Thriller    -   Yes Murder Mystery (killer unknown)    -   Yes

Main Character

Gender    -   Male Profession/status:    -   police/lawman Age:    -   20's-30's Ethnicity/Race    -   British


Europe    -   Yes European country:    -   England/UK

Writing Style

Accounts of torture and death?    -   generic/vague references to death/punishment Amount of dialog    -   significantly more dialog than descript

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M.C. Beaton Books Note: the views expressed here are only those of the reviewer(s).
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