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Death of a Dentist
Hamish Macbeth - Book XIII

by M. C. Beaton


Hamish awakes one cold autumn morning with a terrible toothache and dashes out to see a dentist.   But his usual one is some way off in Inverness, so instead, he decides to visit Dr Gilchrist in nearer Braikie.  When Hamish gets there he certainly finds the dentist, but he is dead in his own chair, with holes drilled in all his teeth.  Hamish soon discovers that Dr Gilchrist has a reputation for being a bad dentist and something of a ladies man—but who hated him enough to want to kill him?

In some ways this is the most satirical of the series to date, and certainly the most scathing of the seedier side of Highland life.  How much of it is true is beyond my own limited experience of the place, but Ms Beaton paints a lifelike picture containing a mixture of the worst of modern life married with the least appealing aspects of "the good old days."  This makes a rather impressive backdrop to this tangled tale of a philandering dentist, a safe with a wooden back, and an illegal still, amongst other things.  Chilly Priscilla is miles away in London so there is a new love interest, and in Braikie, a new setting for this story.  I continue to be impressed by the way this author keeps this long-running series fresh and interesting.

Reviews of other titles in this series

Death of a Gossip #1
Death of a Cad #2
Death of an Outsider #3
Death of a Macho Man #12
Death of a Dentist #13
Death of a Scriptwriter #14
Death of an Addict #15
A Highland Christmas #15.5
Death of a Dustman #16  [review 1] [review 2]
Death of a Celebrity #17  [review 1] [review 2]
Death of a Village #18
Death of a Poison Pen #19
Death of a Bore #20  [review 1] [review 2]
Death of a Dreamer #21 [audio] [book 1 ] [book 2]
Death of a Maid #22  [review 1] [uk review 2]
Death of a Gentle Lady #23  [review 1] [review 2]
Death of a Witch #24  [review 1] [review 2]
Death of a Valentine #25  [review 1] [review 2]
Death of a Chimney Sweep #26  [review 1] [review 2]
Death of a Kingfisher #27  [review 1] [review 2]
Death of Yesterday #28  [audio] [ book]
Death of a Policeman #29  [audio] [book]
Death of a Liar #30  [audio] [book]
Death of a Nurse #31  [audio] [book]
Death of a Ghost #32 [audio] [book]

Death of an Honest Man #33 [audio] [book]

The Book

Robinson (Constable and Robinson)
May 2009
1845299086 / 9781845299088
NOTE: US edition (published in 1998) is different

The Reviewer

Rachel A Hyde
Reviewed 2009
© 2009