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Agatha Raisin & The Terrible Tourist
Agatha Raisin series #6

by M C Beaton

      Agatha Raisin just cannot bear to let her neighbor James Lacey get away, so she pursues him to Northern Cyprus for the holiday that was to have been their honeymoon. Before she tracks him down, she falls in with an ill-assorted group of English tourists and witnesses the murder of one of them at a disco. Keen as ever to play sleuth despite the misgivings of the local police, she and James try to find out whodunit, together and separately.

There is too much satire in here to warrant a genuinely "cozy" rating, and more power to Ms Beaton's elbow because of it. She is at her witty best here, describing the holiday from hell and Agatha's doomed-to-failure pursuit of James, surely a cold fish who does not deserve our sympathy even if a terrifying PR supremo is chasing him. The case is not in the forefront here, even if it is on every page, as surely it is Agatha's tangled love life (or rather sex life) that is the star attraction.

It is a spot-on and, in some ways, rather bleak look at a middle-aged woman who appears to have a lot going for her, but is making a fool of herself chasing after more than one man; but it is very funny as well. I didn't guess whodunit, and for a slim volume, Ms Beaton manages to pack in more than in many similar books (I mean whodunits, for surely Agatha is inimitable) more than twice as long. I can't wait to read the next installment.

The Book

Constable (Constable & Robinson)
30 March 2006
ISBN-10: 1845291840
ISBN-13: 9781845291846
Contemporary Crime [Northern Cyprus]
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The Reviewer

Rachel A Hyde
Reviewed 2006
© 2006