Title: Love, Lies and Liquor: An Agatha Raisin Mystery Author: M. C. Beaton Publisher: Books on Tape (2006) Format: Audio Genre: Cozy Mystery Source: Library Series:Agatha Raisin #17
It appears that Agatha has put on her big girl panties and she is no longer going to be ex-husband James Lacey’s doormat. He cannot suddenly appear in her life and on a moment’s notice assume that she is going to drop everything and follow him on a whim.
OK, well maybe after this one trip.
After seventeen books, we all know Agatha pretty well, she puts on a strong face, but deep down she is desperate for a man’s attention, even if the said man of the moment does not treat her very well. This time it is going to be different, James has unexpectedly arrived on her doorstep and wanting a traveling companion for his next assignment, as a travel book writer, he has invited Agatha on holiday.
Unfortunately, the idyllic resort that James remembered from his youth has seen better days. As James is remembering a perfect vacation from his childhood, Agatha is seeing an old hotel crumbling into the sea. She wants to go home; she wants to be back in her garden with her cats.
Agatha is devastated at the turn of events and showing her disappointment, takes her anger out on a fellow guest. The next day when said guest turns up strangled with Agatha’s scarf the police quickly jump to their inept conclusions and arrest Agatha. This cannot be happening. Unless she can get to the bottom of this fiasco, she will be spending the rest of her days in a cell in a pathetic little town.
Luckily, for Agatha, there is no shortage of suspects and the reader has to pay attention as to who is related to whom. What motivation each of them has and will a most fortuitous glimpse into a draw blow the case wide open.
For me, once again, Mrs. Bloxby is the perfect character in this book. You can see her growing and having more fun than the typical lot of a vicar’s wife. In a way, I think she lives vicariously through Agatha and at the same time, has the astute insight that keeps all of the townspeople of Carsely in line.