Friday, September 19, 2008

Murder She Wrote: The Highland Fling Murders

Murder, She Wrote: The Highland Fling Murders is the eighth volume in author Donald Bain's long-running series of official MURDER, SHE WROTE tie-ins -- a series with more than 30 original novels to date, and counting. When mystery novelist (and amateur sleuth) Jessica Fletcher and group of friends from Cabot Cove, Maine, take a vacation for the British Isles, they stay at a Scottish castle which is rumored to be haunted. Soon (of course) the gang is embroiled in murder and conspiracy.

Bain once again does a capable job of reuniting readers with these beloved characters, including several familiar faces from Cabot Cove. The story is engaging, and the mystery, while not as "fair-play" as some fans of the TV show might expect, is nonetheless rewarding.

Unfortunately, the experience is somewhat marred by occasions of sloppy logic and even sloppy language -- especially disconcerting when the narrator is supposed to be a professional wordsmith. A minor quibble, perhaps, when the Murder She Wrote books are clearly intended to be comfort food for fans of the groundbreaking TV series -- and, as such, worth the read.

Description:

A SLAYING IN SCOTLAND

Jessica Fletcher and a group of her friends from Cabot Cove, Maine, take off for the British Isles and end up at a castle in Scotland. It would be a great vacation – except for the ghost. And the murders.

Scotland’s most celebrated witch, executed long ago with a pitchfork through her heart, is said to haunt Inspector George Sutherland’s family castle in the village of Wick. It’s an intriguing tale and after a British book tour, Jessica accepts Sutherland’s invitation to bring her Cabot Cove friends to the heather-covered Highlands. Indeed, after “roamin’ in the gloamin’” with the handsome inspector, she spots a spectral woman in white in the gloomy castle. But Jessica’s blood runs cold when she later finds a local lass executed in the same way as the legendary witch. Something is very vile in Wick. It’s a castle of evil, greed, and murder that pits Jessica Fletcher against a killer from this world – or maybe the next.

Official site at Berkley Prime Crime
Official Murder, She Wrote on Facebook

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