Author: M. C. Beaton
Published: Robinson Publishing, 2010 (first published 1992)
Series: Book 1, Agatha Raisin
Summary: Agatha Raisin has finally achieved her picture-book life in the beautiful Cotswolds. How better to make new friends than to enter a quiche-making contest? To ensure first prize, Agatha buys her entry at London's Quicherie. But when the judge, Mr. Cummings-Browne, succumbs after trying Agatha's quiche, her chances of winning the competition, or new friends are way beyond hope unless she can nab the murderer! (Taken from Goodreads)
Thoughts: Having never read a cosy mystery before, I wasn’t entirely sure what to expect from this book. I have to say that as I was reading the first chapter my mind started to wander and all I could think was what the f**** is this book. It’s just weird. This lady, Agatha Raisin, is such a snob. I thought it was a little weird, but I carried on. There is actually a lot of character development and it was really good to see Agatha change over time.
I think once I got over the beginning of the book, which I just wasn’t really expecting, I started to get into the book a bit more. Although, I did find myself wondering if this was actually a murder mystery at one point just because it took, what felt like a while to get into the story.
One really cool thing about this book was that there were quite a lot of references to Agatha Christie. They were just scattered throughout the book in a subtle way and it was really fun to spot them.
I feel like this book was quite odd but also quite enjoyable once I got past the first couple of chapters. In terms of a mystery it had everything it needed. There were red herrings and clues to things scattered throughout which I really enjoyed. One thing that I really love about reading mysteries is guessing who the culprit is. I always get excited if I guess it right and equally so if I don’t guess it.
At the end when there was the big reveal I wasn’t at all surprised. It made sense to me and I had kind of guessed it. I do have to say that I was surprised at how silly Agatha was when it came to the big reveal though.
So will I read the next book in the series? Yes, I think so. Once I got into the story I found it to be really enjoyable. It was a very good first step into the cosy mystery genre.