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As the Pig Turns by M.C. Beaton

As the Pig Turns” is the 23rd Agatha Raisin Mystery set in the Cotswold town of Mircester, UK.  Agatha Raisin is implicated initially in the gruesome murder of a local policeman because of a grudge she held against the cop.  Once she is cleared she resolves to have her detective agency solve the murder, despite repeated warnings by the local police chief that Raisin’s agency is to stay out of the investigation.  Raisin ignores the police because she knows, and they know, that she has a fabulous track record in solving crimes ahead of the police.

As usual, Beaton effectively winds a number of subplots into the story.  Raisin has been particularly hard on her young crackerjack detective, Toni.  Raisin had the audacity to order another of her agents to stop seeing Toni socially because Toni was, in Raisin’s opinion, too young to get married.  The other agent responded by quitting the company and joining the Army.  Raisin is also very fickle about her love interests and her feelings about her neighbor and ex-spouse, James, her friend, Charles, and other men who come into her life, varies depending on whether they are around or not and how attentive they are when they are in town.

As I’ve said in previous reviews, Agatha is a hard character to like, but you have to admire her hutzpah and her success.  She reminds me very much of a boss I once had.  She was someone you loved and hated at the same time, but you always had to admire her ability. I can relate to Agatha even though I don’t really like her.

As the Pig Turns” will appeal to many British cozy mystery readers and to those who have been long-time fans of this series.

Liz Nichols

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