I don’t know what took me so long, but while visiting blogs a couple of weeks ago I discovered the world of Agatha Raisin. It’s actually a great world to spend time in. Agatha’s world is, at times, laugh-out-loud funny, thought provoking and generally good entertainment. Her world is found is fairly short novels, so I didn’t have time to get bored. I was able to read the first two books in the series in a very short time.
But first, let me answer this question: Who is Agatha Raisin? Many of you will already know the answer, but Agatha Raisin is a middle-aged, self-made English woman who owned her own public relations firm in London. Actually, she owned her own world there in London and could very easily make things happen. Agatha is, you see, someone who speaks her mind which tends to offend people and made them think she is arrogant and pushy. She’s very strong-minded so she usually gets whatever she wants.
From the time she was a girl Agatha always dreamed of owning a cottage in the Cotswolds. The dream stayed in the back of her mind and then, suddenly, one day, she decided it was time to do just that. She sold her business, her condo in London, and bought her cozy little cottage. Quiche of Death tells us the whole story. This first novel introduces readers to Agatha and covers her move to the small village of Carsley.
Agatha really should have done a better job of thinking through her move to the country. Country life was so different for her. She didn’t know how to fit in. But, in Agatha’s attempt to meet her fellow villagers, she decided to enter the local quiche baking competition. Of course Agatha knew nothing about baking quiches, but she did know a great quiche-maker in London. She bought the quiche, entered it in the contest, but didn’t win. One of the judges brought the quiche home, ate it, and died.
At first, Agatha was blamed, but the police soon learned of the origin of the quiche and she was cleared. Agatha now thought it would be fun to find the real killer. She needed something to do — something to keep her busy. Following her attempts at investigation was great fun.
The second book in the series picks up where Quiche left off. Agatha is still trying to make friends in the village. She’s also trying to impress the hot-looking man next door. James Lacey is an ex-military man who has retired to write military history. All the local women have been chasing him and, when he sees Agatha on his trail, he avoids her too.
When the local veterinarian dies in an accident while tending a horse, Agatha doesn’t believe it was an accident. Everyone, including her friend Bill Wong, a police detective, thinks Agatha is just saying its a murder so she can step back into the local limelight. Surprisingly, James believes Agatha. Together they check out a few things and gradually get some results although it takes a while and isn’t exactly what they thought.
Neither plot in the two books is complicated. There are the usual red herrings and tricky twists. Both books were very lighthearted and there’s quite a bit of humor in them. The second book has a scene with Agatha going to extraordinary lengths to eliminate a blemish on her nose. The visual description made me laugh so hard I had tears in my eyes. A thoroughly enjoyable experience. Highly recommended.