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25 January 2016

Rambling About.. M. C. Beaton's The Quiche of Death

Title: The Quiche of Death
Author: M.C. Beaton
Publication: December 1992 - St. Martin's Press
Format: epub -- Book Bazaar Reader -- 137 pages 
First Lines: Mrs Agatha Raisin sat behind her newly cleared desk in her office in South Molton Street in London's Mayfair. From the outer office came the hum of voices and the clink of glasses as the staff prepared to say farewell to her.

Favorites on 4s: (page 24, 54, 74, 94, 114
24 - She ate some breakfast and picked up an Agatha Christie mystery and tried to read, but could not focus on the words. What did fictional mysteries matter when there was a real-live one in the village?

54 - Old houses crack and sigh as they settle down for the night. For a long time Agatha lay awake, starting at every sound, until she suddenly fell asleep, one hand resting on the knob of the poker.
74 - "Like another world," said Roy. "I thought you'd made a ghastly mistake coming here, Aggie, but now I think you're lucky."
94 - "You know, you haven't given it much time. It takes about two years to settle in anywhere. Besides, you're a different person. Less prickly, less insensitive."
114 - Agatha Raisin, with her skirts hitched up, was running down Lilac Lane as if all the fiends of hell were after her.

Ramble: I've been meaning to read the Agatha Raisin books for at least a decade ... or two ... and finally got around to starting!

Agatha is 53 and has take an early retirement from her public relations firm in London in order to buy a cozy little cottage in a cozy little village. Everyone seems friendly at first. Her new neighbors always say hello and talk about the weather but she soon realizes that it's all they talk to her about so she decides to enter the upcoming quiche competition so people will notice her when she wins. Of course, Agatha doesn't know how to do more than microwave frozen dinners from the market so she goes to the best quiche shop in London and buys a quiche to enter in the contest. She loses, the contest judge ends up dead, her quiche is declared to be the weapon. Things in Agatha's world aren't quite so cozy.

I have some big issues with Agatha Raisin. She's brash and ballsy and selfish and reminds me a little too much of people I have known. Since other characters tended to call her out on her less desirable personality traits I'm assuming that I wasn't necessarily supposed to like her much. Luckily, I absolutely adored some of her neighbors and her former assistant, Roy. They're why I have The Vicious Vet lined up and ready to go already. If next month's TBR goes by as quickly as this month's has it will be the first thing I turn to to fill in the empty bit of time. I'm hoping that Agatha herself will grow on me some more, but as long as everyone else is written as they were in The Quiche of Death I think I'll be okay.


  1. I forgot that Roy is in the very first one. Makes sense really. I was reading your Favorites on the 4s - can you imagine - Roy tells Agatha she is "Less prickly, less insensitive." Really cringing to think what she was like before, lol.

    There are lots of other great characters in later books too (and Roy returns from time to time). Aside from Agatha herself and the murderer, just about everyone in all the books is quite likable. Sometimes the murderer is too! Agatha will probably grow on you. I think it took me around four books before I really liked her a lot. And she can still totally exasperate me - I think that will never change.

    1. I do quite adore the unadorable at times ... at least in media. I actually found myself thinking the other day "now if only I was more like Agatha Raisin" over something stupid at work.