Agatha Raisin and the Witches' Tree (Agatha Raisin #28)
The Witches’ Tree continues the tradition in M. C. Beaton's beloved Agatha Raisin mystery series―now a hit T.V. show.Cotswolds inhabitants are used to inclement weather, but the night sky is especially foggy as Rory and Molly Devere, the new vicar and his wife, drive slowly home from a dinner party in their village of Sumpton Harcourt. They strain to see the road ahead―and then suddenly brake, screeching to a halt. Right in front of them, aglow in the headlights, a body hangs from a gnarled tree at the edge of town. Margaret Darby, an elderly spinster, has been murdered―and the villagers are bewildered as to who would commit such a crime.Agatha Raisin rises to the occasion (a little glad for the excitement, to tell the truth, after a long run of lost cats and divorces on the books). But Sumpton Harcourt is a small and private village, she finds―a place that poses more questions than answers. And when two more murders follow the first, Agatha begins to fear for her reputation―and even her life. That the village has its own coven of witches certainly doesn't make her feel any better...

Agatha Raisin and the Witches' Tree (Agatha Raisin #28) Details

TitleAgatha Raisin and the Witches' Tree (Agatha Raisin #28)
Author
LanguageEnglish
ReleaseOct 5th, 2017
PublisherConstable
ISBN-139781472117229
Rating
GenreMystery, Fiction, Cozy Mystery

Agatha Raisin and the Witches' Tree (Agatha Raisin #28) Review

  • OutlawPoet
    January 1, 1970
    Okay, here’s my confession…I want Agatha and Charles to get married and have a Happily Ever After. I loved this latest entry in the Agatha Raisin series. The Witches Tree has a great mystery, some truly devious crimes, and it’s just pure fun.Agatha is maturing. She’s still Agatha (no worries), but in this book she’s becoming more the person her readers know she can be. And her relationship with Charles is getting interesting…in a swoon-worthy way.No worries – your favorite characters are there a Okay, here’s my confession…I want Agatha and Charles to get married and have a Happily Ever After. I loved this latest entry in the Agatha Raisin series. The Witches Tree has a great mystery, some truly devious crimes, and it’s just pure fun.Agatha is maturing. She’s still Agatha (no worries), but in this book she’s becoming more the person her readers know she can be. And her relationship with Charles is getting interesting…in a swoon-worthy way.No worries – your favorite characters are there and there’s still a lot of nasty under the ‘peaceful’ country exterior.A fast and fabulously fun read. And as a reminder, if you’re new to Agatha Raisin, you really can start anywhere. No need to go back to book 1.*ARC Provided via Net Galley
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  • Nicole
    January 1, 1970
    The Witches' Tree, the 28th Agatha Raisin mystery by acclaimed author M.C. Beaton, is so well written that it doesn't matter if one hasn't read all the previous books in the series prior to this one. Personally, I'd only read the first (The Quiche of Death) but did see all the episodes of the television series. Other than the location and some of the characters, new readers to the series should not expect the same warm/fuzzy feeling from the television shows to be evident in the books. The story The Witches' Tree, the 28th Agatha Raisin mystery by acclaimed author M.C. Beaton, is so well written that it doesn't matter if one hasn't read all the previous books in the series prior to this one. Personally, I'd only read the first (The Quiche of Death) but did see all the episodes of the television series. Other than the location and some of the characters, new readers to the series should not expect the same warm/fuzzy feeling from the television shows to be evident in the books. The story is very enjoyable - it's a lovely combination of charming, spooky, amusing and it's also a little bit dark. Not one, but two bodies are found hanging from The Witches Tree in the small Cotswolds village of Sumpton Harcourt (near Carsely), and it's up to Agatha and her team to investigate and discover the culprit. There are lots of little behind the scenes antics as well (relationships between Agatha and James, and also between Agatha and Charles), and it does quite well as a standalone. The banter is quick and clever, and there is a little surprise in the epilogue as well. Highly, highly recommended!
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  • Susan Johnson
    January 1, 1970
    A character in this book moved to the Cotswolds solely because he wanted the Agatha Christie experience. It's really the Jane Marple experience of village life and he was trying to experience that. I realized that is one of the reasons I like this series so much. I too want to live in a little village with other little towns all 5-10 minutes apart and gorgeous scenery. And never a shortage of handsome men, just ask Agatha Raisin. I always am surprised she makes a living running a detective agenc A character in this book moved to the Cotswolds solely because he wanted the Agatha Christie experience. It's really the Jane Marple experience of village life and he was trying to experience that. I realized that is one of the reasons I like this series so much. I too want to live in a little village with other little towns all 5-10 minutes apart and gorgeous scenery. And never a shortage of handsome men, just ask Agatha Raisin. I always am surprised she makes a living running a detective agency with employees no less in the Cotswolds but she does. Apparently there are more things that need investigating than I envisioned and when people start dying right and left, Agatha investigates. There is one scene where she gets ties up with her assistant, Toni, that is laugh out loud hysterical. There is a witch's coven thrown in and a restaurant owner who dares to spit into Agatha's food. There is never a dull moment. Agatha even gets Charles out of a big mess in a very fun way. Who isn't rooting for Agatha and Charles to get together? I think they are better suited than James. It's another fun romp with Agatha that I enjoyed. Thanks to Net Galley for a copy of this enjoyable read.
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  • Nancy
    January 1, 1970
    My thanks to Netgalley and the Publisher for an opportunity to read an advanced copy of this book.After the last book, ‘Pushing up Daisies’, I had hoped that MC Beaton has turned a corner and her Agatha Raisin series would get back to what they had previous been with multiple story lines that bounced back and forth effortlessly. Unfortunately, this book returned to the usual drivel that has become her norm.Fifty-three year old Agatha is in her usual depressed mood when there is no man in her lif My thanks to Netgalley and the Publisher for an opportunity to read an advanced copy of this book.After the last book, ‘Pushing up Daisies’, I had hoped that MC Beaton has turned a corner and her Agatha Raisin series would get back to what they had previous been with multiple story lines that bounced back and forth effortlessly. Unfortunately, this book returned to the usual drivel that has become her norm.Fifty-three year old Agatha is in her usual depressed mood when there is no man in her life and work is the usual boring assortment of missing pets, marital affairs and wayward teens. Agatha is still the “pet hate” for Wilkes since she tends to solve more crime by “bumbling about” then he does. Thus begins the tale of the Witches’ Tree when the body of Margaret Darby is found hanging from a tree that has a curious past. The story gets a bit twisted with several dead bodies, a coven, and a will that has gone through several revisions, but when it comes down to it, the village of Sumpton Harcourt has some very odd people not to mention too much affinity for Agatha Christy and romance novels. Things were touched on in the book, involving the wife of the new vicar, that I did not think belonged in a cozy mystery and I was rather surprised to see it brought up here. There were parts that did not seem to be fully addressed by the end of the book and characters that took up more room than they should have. Overall, if you have read the full series to this point, you would not be able to pass by a new Agatha, but if you are just staring out, I suggest that you start at the beginning and develop you own love for the people of Carsley.
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  • Barbara Rogers
    January 1, 1970
    Series: Agatha Raisin #28Publication Date: 10/3/17Wow! I’ve found a new best friend and it is Agatha Raisin. I know I have come to this series late in its life, but I had no problem reading and thoroughly enjoying this latest addition to the series. I love M. C. Beaton’s books and particularly the Hamish Macbeth series and now this one. I do have to wonder though – does this author not want Hamish and Agatha to have HEA’s. I say that because Hamish seems to go from lady to lady without finding l Series: Agatha Raisin #28Publication Date: 10/3/17Wow! I’ve found a new best friend and it is Agatha Raisin. I know I have come to this series late in its life, but I had no problem reading and thoroughly enjoying this latest addition to the series. I love M. C. Beaton’s books and particularly the Hamish Macbeth series and now this one. I do have to wonder though – does this author not want Hamish and Agatha to have HEA’s. I say that because Hamish seems to go from lady to lady without finding love and the same is apparently true for Agatha. Agatha is fifty-three years old and has been married twice. To me, she is very depressed, lonely and insecure without a man in her life. I can only assume that is thoroughly explained in earlier books. She’s insecure about her looks and her lovability. She’s also strong, grumpy, sensible, quirky, funny, acerbic, and well – just likable. She is still friends with her last ex-husband – he even lives next door. Agatha also has an interesting relationship with her friend Sir Charles. It would appear that they actually may love each other, but neither of them realizes it or would admit it. I would like to see this relationship grow and come to an HEA for Agatha and Charles because I like both of them. Given the author’s other series though, I wonder if Agatha is destined to remain a lonely old cat lady for the rest of her days.On a very dark, foggy night the new vicar and his wife are returning home from a very boring dinner party in the next town over. In a quick parting of the fog, their headlights illuminate something hanging from the Witches Tree – it is a body. The police soon determine she was murdered – and there are more bodies to come. What a gruesome welcome to the Cotswolds!Agatha, who has her own private investigation firm, is retained to solve the crime. She’s so happy to do so because she has become very bored and tired of investigating divorce cases, lost cats, etc. This will be a welcome diversion for her.The book is filled with quirky, interesting characters as most of Beaton’s books are. Everyone has a hidden ‘secret’ and before Agatha is finished, she knows them all. There is a host of suspects and Agatha eliminates them one-by-one and is still baffled – until she finds that one very important question she had forgotten to ask.Can you believe a coven of witches in a small, beautiful English village in the Cotswolds? Well, there is one and they are a pretty nasty bunch. Agatha is sure they have something to do with the murders, but she isn’t sure what. Are they the murderers or are they just the enablers? You’ll just have to read the book to find out.I almost didn’t request this book because the description of Agatha Raisin as 'Agatha Christi like' just didn’t appeal to me. I decided to request it anyway because I usually like Beaton’s work – and I’m so glad I did. I read the book straight through into the wee hours of the morning because I couldn’t wait to see what Agatha was up to next. I do hope Beaton decides to give Agatha the love she so longs for. Great read!"I requested and received this e-book at no cost to me and volunteered to read it; my review is my honest opinion and given without any influence by the author or publisher."
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  • Charlotte Miller
    January 1, 1970
    It is entirely M. C. Beaton’s fault that I am sleep-deprived today, for I was up half the night reading The Witches’ Tree, the 28th volume in the magnificent Agatha Raisin series. Full of twists and turns, and the charming and ever-irascible Agatha, The Witches’ Tree is a must read for mystery fans. If you haven’t met the unforgettable Agatha yet, you really should. This is a fantastic series, and The Witches’ Tree is one of M. C. Beaton’s best. (Advance Reading Copy obtained by request from Net It is entirely M. C. Beaton’s fault that I am sleep-deprived today, for I was up half the night reading The Witches’ Tree, the 28th volume in the magnificent Agatha Raisin series. Full of twists and turns, and the charming and ever-irascible Agatha, The Witches’ Tree is a must read for mystery fans. If you haven’t met the unforgettable Agatha yet, you really should. This is a fantastic series, and The Witches’ Tree is one of M. C. Beaton’s best. (Advance Reading Copy obtained by request from NetGalley.)
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  • Bebe (Sarah) Brechner
    January 1, 1970
    Absolutely Agatha - Beaton continues to charm with the irascable, predictable, entertaining Agatha Raisin. Beaton's style is brisk, with most characters thinly drawn and mostly unlikeable, but that is the charm, oddly enough. This new entry doesn't break new ground, and the ending is rather abrupt, but what's not to love? Agatha can do no wrong for her fans, and I'm one of them. For newbies, start at or near the beginning of this prolific series. Agatha is an acquired taste, and for those who ha Absolutely Agatha - Beaton continues to charm with the irascable, predictable, entertaining Agatha Raisin. Beaton's style is brisk, with most characters thinly drawn and mostly unlikeable, but that is the charm, oddly enough. This new entry doesn't break new ground, and the ending is rather abrupt, but what's not to love? Agatha can do no wrong for her fans, and I'm one of them. For newbies, start at or near the beginning of this prolific series. Agatha is an acquired taste, and for those who have acquired the taste, we are insatiable.
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  • Lesa
    January 1, 1970
    I'm a latecomer to M. C. Beaton's Agatha Raisin series. To be honest, I'm not a big fan of a character who is man-hungry and doesn't feel as if she's complete without a man in her life. I've read and reviewed the books when there has been an anniversary, or, in this case, when sent the book for review. But, it's hard not to feel sorry for Agatha in The Witches' Tree.Fans of cozy mysteries should find the opening scene in The Witches' Tree to be spot-on, and funny. Sir Edward Chumble is a newcome I'm a latecomer to M. C. Beaton's Agatha Raisin series. To be honest, I'm not a big fan of a character who is man-hungry and doesn't feel as if she's complete without a man in her life. I've read and reviewed the books when there has been an anniversary, or, in this case, when sent the book for review. But, it's hard not to feel sorry for Agatha in The Witches' Tree.Fans of cozy mysteries should find the opening scene in The Witches' Tree to be spot-on, and funny. Sir Edward Chumble is a newcomer to the Cotswolds, and he's moved there, hoping to be lord of the manor, living in an Agatha Christie novel. He throws a dinner part and invites a vicar and his wife, an elderly judge, a married couple, and a friend of his wife's. When the party falls flat, the vicar and his wife, Molly, leave early, only to discover a body hanging from the witches' tree in their village. Agatha Raisin only has a slight interest, but when another body is found, she encourages Sir Edward to hire her to find the killer because the police have failed.Agatha isn't the most popular person with the police. "She solved cases by bumbling about, often putting herself and everyone else in danger, and then getting to the right conclusion by a flash of intuition." That's an accurate summary. While Agatha bumbles about, investigating local witches, she's also spending her time bemoaning the lack of a man who loves her.Agatha does have men in her life who love her, in their fashion. Her ex-husband is often available to help with her cases, as is her occasional lover, Sir Charles Fraith, who is always looking for a woman with money. But, Agatha is actually a lonely, pathetic figure. It's hard to feel sorry for her at times, but, it's also hard not to feel for her in her loneliness and neediness.I didn't exactly summarize the mystery, did I? It's a typical village mystery in which several people are killed, and the sleuth does bumble into the solution after being attacked and rescued. There's nothing extraordinary about The Witches' Tree. It's for those readers who appreciate Agatha Raisin.
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  • Mina De Caro (Mina's Bookshelf)
    January 1, 1970
    Read my full review on MINA'S BOOKSHELF http://minadecaro.blogspot.com/2017/0...A cozy murder mystery, an idyllic village in the lovely Cotswolds, thatched cottages, and legends of a witches' coven swirling around an old oak tree...I couldn't have asked for a more inviting setup! Unfortunately, this charming narrative frame wasn't enough to smooth the choppy edges and afflictions of the book. Would reading the Agatha Raisin's mystery series from the onset help warm up to the leading lady and per Read my full review on MINA'S BOOKSHELF http://minadecaro.blogspot.com/2017/0...A cozy murder mystery, an idyllic village in the lovely Cotswolds, thatched cottages, and legends of a witches' coven swirling around an old oak tree...I couldn't have asked for a more inviting setup! Unfortunately, this charming narrative frame wasn't enough to smooth the choppy edges and afflictions of the book. Would reading the Agatha Raisin's mystery series from the onset help warm up to the leading lady and permanent cast? Maybe...overall, I didn't find in the narrative enough appeal to sustain my interest in future (or backlist) installments. Scene development and flow of events were too bumpy and uneven to keep me focused on the plot, and this is what had me scratch star after star from my final rating. An e-copy was graciously offered by the Publisher via NetGalley in exchange of an unbiased and honest review.
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  • Linda
    January 1, 1970
    An elderly villager is found murdered, and Agatha is on the case. So many suspects: the new vicar, his lovely wife and lecherous brother, a pair of trust-fund siblings, and a pompous old git. But Agatha, with the help of her staff plus Charles and James, is determined to solve the mystery.
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  • Celine Godfrey
    January 1, 1970
    Ooh .... I loved this! Stayed up waay too late to finish it. I've only given it four stars in general but if I was judging solely on Agatha Raisin books, it'd be a solid FIVE stars.Well ..... firstly Netgalley and publisher, thank you so much for permitting me to read this advanced copy. I didn't spot that many spelling or grammatical errors in it but maybe that's because I was up till 5am reading it!!!!I'm a big Agatha Raisin fan for various reasons and I've read ALL the books. So I must point Ooh .... I loved this! Stayed up waay too late to finish it. I've only given it four stars in general but if I was judging solely on Agatha Raisin books, it'd be a solid FIVE stars.Well ..... firstly Netgalley and publisher, thank you so much for permitting me to read this advanced copy. I didn't spot that many spelling or grammatical errors in it but maybe that's because I was up till 5am reading it!!!!I'm a big Agatha Raisin fan for various reasons and I've read ALL the books. So I must point out the last few left a question about the writing because sometimes it felt it wasn't actually Marion (MC Beaton) who's written at least parts of them. So I thought the last few were a little off form.However ..... we're back in top gear again! Not so much of a twisty plot this time but the writing and the action truly SPED along!! Whole events were captured in two sentences or less in some parts. All our beloved characters are welcomed back. Some new, dispensable characters were introduced. Mrs Bloxby is still called Sarah (as opposed to Margaret the first time her name was revealed)! I did miss Revd Bloxby though who was reduced to maybe one sentence but the new characters and the pace made up for that.Charles is still flitting in and out of Agatha's life as he pleases, as is Roy, as is James. There is a new love interest (short lived) and she's even taken out on a dinner date with a rather public "scene" involved before the end. The cats, the cleaner, everyone is back!The murder is immediate the pace faster than Usain Bolt on speed! In fact, I wondered several times if Agatha and/or the author were!!!! If so, please continue during the next book!We have Agatha's usual acerbic put down's and wit ... and the same from a few other characters. I give it 5 stars for an Agatha book even though I could deduct points for the awful "sarf London" accent of the Indian corner shop lady (irony again) .... and I'm not quite sure which accent or indeed dialect the actual witches were speaking in .... closer to tongues I think.Interestingly, as this is the first book since the TV serialisation which fans have panned for miscasting of not only Agatha, who is mid fifties, short, solidly built, brown bobbed, bear eyed, knee skirt length and stiletto wearing, curmudgeon constantly concealing her Brummie accent ... but is actually played by the lovely Ashley Jensen who is blonde, slender, Scottish and doesn't disguise her accent) .... i found myself picturing Ashley as Agatha in PARTS of the book. The writing of course, then referred to Agatha brown bob and Brummie accent ... which means I had to mix my own image of book Agatha with TV portrayed Agatha ... and that was a bit contradictory still. The same with other cast members ... who have been changed beyond physical recognition in the tv series!Nonetheless, sticking just to the book ... Beaton back on her best form. I loved it and so will other longstanding Agatha fans. AND finally ...... yes, where we left Charles's and Agatha "relationship" in the last book .. picks up from there in this one AND actually progresses .... but I'm not including any spoilers at all cos fans know what those two are like!!Thoroughly enjoyed it! Now I have to go catch up on sleep!
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  • Carol Bellamy
    January 1, 1970
    Continue to enjoy this series and its flawed but humorous and lovable characters. M. C. Beaton moves the stories along by getting the exposition in his descriptions and dialogue
  • Crittermom
    January 1, 1970
    The Witches’ Tree is a terrific addition to the Agatha Raisin series.  It is clever, funny, and has a wonderful cast of quirky characters- both series favourites and new additions.  The Witches Tree begins with a village Vicar and his wife discovering the body of one of the church volunteers hanging on The Witches’ Tree in the center of the green.  But this body is only the first.  Hungry for excitement and tired of the lost pets and divorce cases that are the bread and butter of her business, A The Witches’ Tree is a terrific addition to the Agatha Raisin series.  It is clever, funny, and has a wonderful cast of quirky characters- both series favourites and new additions.  The Witches Tree begins with a village Vicar and his wife discovering the body of one of the church volunteers hanging on The Witches’ Tree in the center of the green.  But this body is only the first.  Hungry for excitement and tired of the lost pets and divorce cases that are the bread and butter of her business, Agatha eagerly tackles the case.  It helps that the local squire is willing to pay in hopes of getting the credit.As in all her mysteries, Agatha gets into plenty of trouble both with her nosy questions and romantic daydreams.  Thankfully she has the help of her friends and colleagues.  The interplay between Agatha and Sir Charles is part of what makes Beaton’s novels so fun.  She has a great way of mixing the real and the comically absurd - I loved the local witches.  I adore the Agatha Raisin mysteries, and The Witches’ Tree is no exception.  Whether you are a current fan or a newcomer to the series The Witches’ Tree is certain to please.5 / 5I received a copy of The Witches’ Tree from the publisher and Netgalley.com in exchange for an honest review.--Crittermom
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  • Ellen
    January 1, 1970
    Although I have enjoyed this series for all of the previous books, I felt this story line lacked something. In addition, the back and forth between Agatha and Charles seemed a bit pathetic instead of fun. The mystery involved murders occurring in a small, gloomy Cotswold town with a witches' coven. Not my favorite.
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  • Kathy
    January 1, 1970
    I have not read any of the books in the Agatha Raisin mysteries, though many of my friends love and devour each as they come out, raving about how good they are, so I wanted to see what the big attraction was when I saw this on NetGalley. Luckily, I got an advance copy to read and review. After reading the book, I am still trying to figure out what exactly they see in this series. I found the book, the story line, the characters and the plot okay, just not outstanding. I am not sure what to say I have not read any of the books in the Agatha Raisin mysteries, though many of my friends love and devour each as they come out, raving about how good they are, so I wanted to see what the big attraction was when I saw this on NetGalley. Luckily, I got an advance copy to read and review. After reading the book, I am still trying to figure out what exactly they see in this series. I found the book, the story line, the characters and the plot okay, just not outstanding. I am not sure what to say about the central figure, Agatha Raisin and why she is so popular among my friends. In addition, I found the small-town England setting okay, but a bit too infused with British customs, cultural dialogue, euphemisms, etc. to suit me. I do not mind a book set in England, but I do not always particularly care for one that is totally infused with British cultural verbiage, customs, etc. I also think it might have helped me better understand things if I had read other books about Agatha Raisin’s exploits, as there were many mentions and allusions to things that had occurred, with little or no back story. I guess, by this time in the series, the author figures the readers already know who is who and what each brings to the table, so there is no need to expand—though a few short sentences would have helped the new-to-the-series reader understand better who was who and what was going on. Agatha Raisin is an interesting character. She is a strong, sensible woman who lets no one or thing get the better of her.In this story, an elderly woman is found dead, hanging from the what is known as the witch’s tree. Agatha becomes involved almost immediately, as her radar senses something not quite right about the circumstances surrounding this death. With the help of Charles (not sure whether he is lover/soon-to-be something-else, friend with benefits or what) and James (the ex with whom she has a pretty tight relationship considering their status), Agatha sets about uncovering clues, ploughing through the never-ending list of suspects and towns folk in the small English town where the body was discovered, until she comes to the book’s conclusion and solution to who committed this heinous crime. The book was interesting, but I doubt this series will move to the top of my list of books-to-read-when-a-new-installment arrives. I am glad I read the book, as it told me a lot about the Agatha Raisin character I have heard so much about in the past. I enjoyed watching her in action as she jumped right into the mystery. I also enjoyed her interactions with the other characters, towns people and suspects. I think anyone who enjoys the series will enjoy this one, for I think it is very typical.
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  • Myndi
    January 1, 1970
    Let me start by saying, I’ve only read one other book by M.C. Beaton, the first in her other series Hamish Macbeth, and found it to be meh. But, she has such a loyal following, and sometimes the first in a series isn’t representative of the whole so…I thought I’d give this latest in her Agatha Raisin series a go. And I’m glad I did because now I know for certain that this author isn’t for me. Man, I detest writing negative reviews. Usually, I just don’t finish and move it to my DNF shelf. But I Let me start by saying, I’ve only read one other book by M.C. Beaton, the first in her other series Hamish Macbeth, and found it to be meh. But, she has such a loyal following, and sometimes the first in a series isn’t representative of the whole so…I thought I’d give this latest in her Agatha Raisin series a go. And I’m glad I did because now I know for certain that this author isn’t for me. Man, I detest writing negative reviews. Usually, I just don’t finish and move it to my DNF shelf. But I felt compelled to give it a fair shake and see it through, and now it feels somehow dishonest to not explain why.To begin with, the characters are completely unlikeable. Agatha is such a mess it is impossible to find the idea of her being a successful detective even remotely plausible. Perhaps she was more likeable at the beginning of the series and has slowly fallen apart throughout the series, and those who have read from the beginning are not appalled by her terrible behavior and personality because they know her from “back when”. Her employees are mostly ok (that Simon guy though, really?), her “friend” Charles is almost as bad as she is. No, I don’t like the characters one bit.The story itself seemed less about the actual detective work and more about poor Agatha and her desperation to find a man. And it was choppy. The format of the digital galley may be partly to blame, but only a little. The segues were almost nonexistent. New paragraph with no chapter demarcation and all of a sudden something completely unrelated is going on. The sexual assault plot line was poorly handled and should have been changed to something else. And it feels like in Agatha Raisin’s world, everyone is an arsehole and no one can be trusted. I’m not saying that’s how she feels, I’m saying that is how the world is portrayed. Even her friends are jerks! I’m afraid I can’t recommend it (unless, of course, you are a huge Agatha Raisin fan, in which case you don’t really need my recommendation anyway, do you?). I wish I had stopped earlier and read something else. But as I said, the upside is, I’ve given both series a go and now I know that M.C. Beaton isn’t my cup of tea. Note: I received this book from the publisher via NetGalley. I pride myself on writing fair and honest reviews.
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  • Jill
    January 1, 1970
    Agatha Raisin is back! Need I say more? Okay, apparently I do. Coming home from an uncomfortable dinner party, vicar Rory Deere and his wife Molly of the village of Sumpton Harcourt discover one of their parishioners hanging from the large and sinister-looking tree in the middle of the town. Called the witches' tree, its dark and spooky image has haunted villagers for years, and now it's become the centerpiece of what the local police are calling a murder. While Rory is feeling guilty for lettin Agatha Raisin is back! Need I say more? Okay, apparently I do. Coming home from an uncomfortable dinner party, vicar Rory Deere and his wife Molly of the village of Sumpton Harcourt discover one of their parishioners hanging from the large and sinister-looking tree in the middle of the town. Called the witches' tree, its dark and spooky image has haunted villagers for years, and now it's become the centerpiece of what the local police are calling a murder. While Rory is feeling guilty for letting his parishioner down, his wife is more interested in getting to the bottom of the mystery. And who better to call on at a time like that than private detective Agatha Raisin? A sharp woman with a fondness for strong men and a head for business and finding answers, Agatha has been known to get to the bottom of a murder before, much to the chagrin of the local police. It doesn't take long before word gets out that she's on the case, and the threats get too close to home. But that's not enough to dissuade Agatha from finding out what she can from the local villagers, looking into the life of the spinster Margaret Darby and why anyone might want to murder an elderly woman and hang her body from the witches' tree. Amid rumors of witchcraft and the eerie atmosphere of the Cotswolds during the raining season, M. C. Beaton's The Witches' Tree is the perfect book to pick up and read in October. Agatha Raisin is captivating, and this is the ideal way to get into that Halloween mood. Very highly recommended for mystery lovers! (And then, don't forget to watch the wonderful Agatha Raisin mysteries on Acorn TV as well as on some local PBS stations. It's fantastic, with perfect casting and wonderful performances!)Galleys for The Witches' Tree were provided by Minotaur Books (St. Martin's Press) through NetGalley.com, with many thanks. 
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  • LuAnn
    January 1, 1970
    You know, there are some truly sick people in the world. But luckily, there are those who work to uncover and bring to justice those who would rather their crimes remain in the dark. Enter Agatha Raisin.Agatha is divorced. Her ex, James, lives next door. She has a wealthy friend, Charles, that has occasionally come 'with benefits'. She runs a small detective agency. Then she thought she'd like a little excitement. (Apparently the 'be careful what you wish for' goes for England as well as the US. You know, there are some truly sick people in the world. But luckily, there are those who work to uncover and bring to justice those who would rather their crimes remain in the dark. Enter Agatha Raisin.Agatha is divorced. Her ex, James, lives next door. She has a wealthy friend, Charles, that has occasionally come 'with benefits'. She runs a small detective agency. Then she thought she'd like a little excitement. (Apparently the 'be careful what you wish for' goes for England as well as the US.) Agatha had her first adventure in 1992 (when #1 was published), so you think she'd know that! *LOL*And, given that Agatha has now had like 24 or so adventures, you would expect well-established characters and MC Beaton delivers admirably. Agatha and James have danced around their lingering attraction for each other, and their interactions are still fresh and filled with a delicious romantic tension.Agatha's staff work together like a well-oiled machine. I really think they can finish each other's thoughts as well as their sentences. (It reminds me of the character Radar in M*A*S*H, who has the papers that Colonel Blake needs to sign before he knows he needs them.)As hard as it is to ingratiate oneself in small-town America, I think it may be even more difficult in small villages in England. But Agatha and Co utilize their unique strengths to unravel the web woven around the guilty party/ies. An actual coven of witches (I don't think they advertise as a rule) in such a community would have to be ultra-private.If y'all haven't discovered already, there is also a TV series, called simply, Agatha Raisin. I, of course, was expecting the show to follow the books. Silly me. Some devices work better in books and some work better on the screen. But Agatha, no matter where she appears, is very, very good!
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  • LuAnn
    January 1, 1970
    You know, there are some truly sick people in the world. But luckily, there are those who work to uncover and bring to justice those who would rather their crimes remain in the dark. Enter Agatha Raisin.Agatha is divorced. Her ex, James, lives next door. She has a wealthy friend, Charles, that has occasionally come 'with benefits'. She runs a small detective agency. Then she thought she'd like a little excitement. (Apparently the 'be careful what you wish for' goes for England as well as the US. You know, there are some truly sick people in the world. But luckily, there are those who work to uncover and bring to justice those who would rather their crimes remain in the dark. Enter Agatha Raisin.Agatha is divorced. Her ex, James, lives next door. She has a wealthy friend, Charles, that has occasionally come 'with benefits'. She runs a small detective agency. Then she thought she'd like a little excitement. (Apparently the 'be careful what you wish for' goes for England as well as the US.) Agatha had her first adventure in 1992 (when #1 was published), so you think she'd know that! *LOL*And, given that Agatha has now had like 24 or so adventures, you would expect well-established characters and MC Beaton delivers admirably. Agatha and James have danced around their lingering attraction for each other, and their interactions are still fresh and filled with a delicious romantic tension.Agatha's staff work together like a well-oiled machine. I really think they can finish each other's thoughts as well as their sentences. (It reminds me of the character Radar in M*A*S*H, who has the papers that Colonel Blake needs to sign before he knows he needs them.)As hard as it is to ingratiate oneself in small-town America, I think it may be even more difficult in small villages in England. But Agatha and Co utilize their unique strengths to unravel the web woven around the guilty party/ies. An actual coven of witches (I don't think they advertise as a rule) in such a community would have to be ultra-private.If y'all haven't discovered already, there is also a TV series, called simply, Agatha Raisin. I, of course, was expecting the show to follow the books. Silly me. Some devices work better in books and some work better on the screen. But Agatha, no matter where she appears, is very, very good!
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  • Marilyn Watson
    January 1, 1970
    M.C. Beaton writes a biting, humorous mystery with her newest book, The Witch's Tree. The descriptions are often hilarious and so are the quips. That does not preclude the book from moving at a fast pace. Nor the murders from being serious. By chapter three I was both amused, hooked and could feel the eeriness of a good, cozy- mystery.Sir Edward Chumble and his wife Tiffany felt it necessary to invite the Vicar and his wife to dinner. This should naturally be blamed on Agatha Christie for her wo M.C. Beaton writes a biting, humorous mystery with her newest book, The Witch's Tree. The descriptions are often hilarious and so are the quips. That does not preclude the book from moving at a fast pace. Nor the murders from being serious. By chapter three I was both amused, hooked and could feel the eeriness of a good, cozy- mystery.Sir Edward Chumble and his wife Tiffany felt it necessary to invite the Vicar and his wife to dinner. This should naturally be blamed on Agatha Christie for her wonderful descriptions of village life. When driving home Rory and Molly Devere find the first body hanging from a tree and from the looks of it ...one more horror to add to the village that has become a nightmare to the Vicar's wife. But one of Beaton's shining qualities is her ability to add humor to a dark situation. By the time Agatha Raisin gets hired by Sir Edward Chumble she is once again in the thick of it with her sometime boyfriend Sir Charles Fraith. Favorite characters are still in the picture and I like the Agatha Raisin... Beaton portrays in this her 28th Book in the series. Although I had not read any of the books before now I had watched the TV Series. The book stands alone you can start anywhere in the series and pick up enough to enjoy it.A Witch's Coven adds a little bit more October fun. That and Agatha on the hunt again determined to root out everyone's secret makes for an enjoyable read. I enjoyed the quirky characters and the dialog very much. I will certainly be an Agatha fan after this and I rated the book five stars.
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  • Linda Baker
    January 1, 1970
    I am a latecomer to the Agatha Raisin series, having discovered them only a few years ago. I was looking for short, undemanding listens and the reviews seemed to fill the bill. I ended up listening to all of the series over time. I often had mixed feelings about them, finding Agatha annoying at times, but entertaining to a greater or lesser degree. The Witches Tree begins with a dreadful dinner party given by the local "wannabe" squire and his flashy wife. The new vicar and his wife, Rory and Mo I am a latecomer to the Agatha Raisin series, having discovered them only a few years ago. I was looking for short, undemanding listens and the reviews seemed to fill the bill. I ended up listening to all of the series over time. I often had mixed feelings about them, finding Agatha annoying at times, but entertaining to a greater or lesser degree. The Witches Tree begins with a dreadful dinner party given by the local "wannabe" squire and his flashy wife. The new vicar and his wife, Rory and Molly Devere, can't wait to get home. But their plan is disrupted when they drive by the Witches Tree and see a body hanging from the branches. It's Margaret Darby, an inoffensive elderly spinster and everyone in the odd little Cotswold village of Sumpton Harcourt can't imagine why....or so they say. The Deveres draw Agatha Raisin and her sometimes sidekick, Sir Charles Fraith, into the investigation. Agatha is feeling bored with her usual lost pet and divorce cases, but two more murders and a practicing witches coven add up to almost more than she can handle.Agatha is a mixture of overconfidence and insecurity, despite great success as a Public Relations executive and now as a PI. She seems to be unable to feel worthy unless she is in a relationship with a man but none of those are ever a success. Her longest relationship has been with Sir Charles, but he is averse to commitment of any kind with the exception of keeping his money pit of an ancestral estate afloat. I admit that I had hopes that he was moving towards realizing how important Agatha is to him, but no such luck. Agatha at least appears to avoid falling for every eligible male she meets in The Witches Tree, which is a welcome development. I do enjoy the sly social commentary that Ms. Beaton injects into all the Agatha Raisin books.Thanks to St.Martin's Minotaur and NetGalley for an advance digital copy. The opinions are my own.RATING- 3 Stars
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  • Jenny Houle
    January 1, 1970
    I received a free ARC of this book from NetGalley for an unbiased opinion.Agatha Raisin is at it again. Following a hanging from tree locally infamous as "The Witches' Tree" in a neighboring Cotswold village, Agatha is hired to solve the case.To those who've been with the series from the beginning, I found this book to be the best in awhile. Over the past few books, I've felt strongly that the changing backstory of a few primary characters (Simon and Charles specifically) was starting to detract I received a free ARC of this book from NetGalley for an unbiased opinion.Agatha Raisin is at it again. Following a hanging from tree locally infamous as "The Witches' Tree" in a neighboring Cotswold village, Agatha is hired to solve the case.To those who've been with the series from the beginning, I found this book to be the best in awhile. Over the past few books, I've felt strongly that the changing backstory of a few primary characters (Simon and Charles specifically) was starting to detract from my enjoyment over the series. This time, while both were very present, Beaton left out the details that bothered me.Additionally, this case truly was solved by Agatha and her agency (she's often accused of bumbling along until she stumbles upon the answer, only to need police rescue for herself as well... definitely not the case in this book).And one more reason this book got a 5 out of 5 rating from me: Agatha doesn't fall in infatuation in this book. She does date, she does acknowledge that she's happiest when she's in love, but there was no "strong woman becomes blithering idiot" subplot this time.Characters I wish I'd seen more of: Bill and Alice. Through the last few books, Bill's clearly been distancing himself from Agatha. Hope soon his romance with Alice will grow more and he can resume a more steady role in the books as Agatha's friend.
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  • Donna
    January 1, 1970
    In M. C. Beaton's newest installment of the Agatha Raisin series, the story open with a murder victim being hung on the Witches Tree in the beautiful Cotswolds region of England. Agatha is a divorced private investigator in the village of Carsley. Agatha is still the grumpy, shrewd investigator that she always was, but now she is experiencing a need to find true love at the age of 50 something. She is always so amusing with her colorful sidekicks, but her long time friend, Sir Charles takes cent In M. C. Beaton's newest installment of the Agatha Raisin series, the story open with a murder victim being hung on the Witches Tree in the beautiful Cotswolds region of England. Agatha is a divorced private investigator in the village of Carsley. Agatha is still the grumpy, shrewd investigator that she always was, but now she is experiencing a need to find true love at the age of 50 something. She is always so amusing with her colorful sidekicks, but her long time friend, Sir Charles takes center stage in this episode. It seems that in this book, Aggie is raunchier than before as she hunts for love and sets everyone straight! I love the dialogue written in the book. It is definitely one of her best. Ms. Beaton always writes a fabulous story with tons of quirky characters and crazy murders, but I love her dialogue in this one, Bravo to her, this is one of my new favorites.Agatha Raisin and the Witches' Tree by M.C. Beaton will be available October 3, 2017 by Minotaur Books, an imprint of St. Martin's Press. An egalley of this book was graciously made available to me by the publisher in exchange for a honest review.
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  • Wanda C
    January 1, 1970
    Agatha has her own detective agency. She travels to a small village where a death is questionable. A village resident retains her to find out what really happened. There is scandal, gossip, additional deaths, abduction, embarrassments, romance, and more. The death of one character really bothers me because the author developed him so well.Based on a five-star rating, I give it five stars!1) Buy from the author in the future? Yes2) Did it keep me intrigued? Yes3) Story line adventurous, mysteriou Agatha has her own detective agency. She travels to a small village where a death is questionable. A village resident retains her to find out what really happened. There is scandal, gossip, additional deaths, abduction, embarrassments, romance, and more. The death of one character really bothers me because the author developed him so well.Based on a five-star rating, I give it five stars!1) Buy from the author in the future? Yes2) Did it keep me intrigued? Yes3) Story line adventurous, mysterious, and believable? Yes4) Would I recommend to a family member/friend? Yes5) Did my idea of the book based on the cover remain the same after I read the book? Yes, the illustration made me very excited to read it. It looks like a nice winding country road, but the title alerts me that there is so much more.
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  • Marie
    January 1, 1970
    I am a huge fan of the Agatha Raisin series, eagerly looking forward to each new instalment and I must admit this is one of the best yet, returning to all the charm and wit of the very first books in the series.I was pleased that the book concentrated more on the mysteries and crimes to be solved and less on Agatha’s romantic crushes and worries about growing old.M C Beaton writes with a wry eye that can see through much of the fuss and subterfuge of people. She is a keen observer of human natur I am a huge fan of the Agatha Raisin series, eagerly looking forward to each new instalment and I must admit this is one of the best yet, returning to all the charm and wit of the very first books in the series.I was pleased that the book concentrated more on the mysteries and crimes to be solved and less on Agatha’s romantic crushes and worries about growing old.M C Beaton writes with a wry eye that can see through much of the fuss and subterfuge of people. She is a keen observer of human nature which she uses to great purpose in creating her characters and in their interactions. This was a really enjoyable read.
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  • Karen
    January 1, 1970
    I have been a fan of this series for a long time and this latest offering does not disappoint, it even exceeded my expectations.The whodunit was full of twists and turns and I had no idea who was the culprit.I thoroughly enjoy the characters and appreciate the realistic portrayal of Agatha and her challenges with her self esteem and love life.The ongoing characters and friendships are a delight to read.I recommend reading this series over watching the television adaptation. As always the books a I have been a fan of this series for a long time and this latest offering does not disappoint, it even exceeded my expectations.The whodunit was full of twists and turns and I had no idea who was the culprit.I thoroughly enjoy the characters and appreciate the realistic portrayal of Agatha and her challenges with her self esteem and love life.The ongoing characters and friendships are a delight to read.I recommend reading this series over watching the television adaptation. As always the books are better.I cannot read to read the next in the series.I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.
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  • Jo (Mixed Book Bag)
    January 1, 1970
    Agatha finds herself in another dangerous place. After months of lost pets and wandering husbands there is a murder and Agatha is hired to find the guilty party. I love Agatha and always enjoy how she finds a man to obsess over. This time nothing comes of it and the obsession does not last long. However after one murder others occur and Agatha finds herself in danger. Once again Agatha and Charles seem to connect and then disconnect. Small spoiler, Agatha saves Charles from a very bad marriage. Agatha finds herself in another dangerous place. After months of lost pets and wandering husbands there is a murder and Agatha is hired to find the guilty party. I love Agatha and always enjoy how she finds a man to obsess over. This time nothing comes of it and the obsession does not last long. However after one murder others occur and Agatha finds herself in danger. Once again Agatha and Charles seem to connect and then disconnect. Small spoiler, Agatha saves Charles from a very bad marriage. A fun addition to the series.I received a free copy of the book in return for an honest review.
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  • Lisa Morin
    January 1, 1970
    I've been a big fan of this series for ages and I really had high hopes for this book.Unfortunately, I was not impressed. The story fell flat, the characters seemed very irritated with each other, and quite honestly, Agatha was on my nerves.I found myself swiping pages, hoping that it would get better, but it didn't happen.For some reason this book lacked all the things I've loved about Agatha and I was really disappointed.I voluntarily read an ARC of this book provided by the publisher and NetG I've been a big fan of this series for ages and I really had high hopes for this book.Unfortunately, I was not impressed. The story fell flat, the characters seemed very irritated with each other, and quite honestly, Agatha was on my nerves.I found myself swiping pages, hoping that it would get better, but it didn't happen.For some reason this book lacked all the things I've loved about Agatha and I was really disappointed.I voluntarily read an ARC of this book provided by the publisher and NetGalley.
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  • Kathy
    January 1, 1970
    The Witches' Tree is the twenty-eight book in the Agatha Raisin series by M.C. Beaton. I love this series. I adore Agatha Raisin. She is a feisty and fun woman who I would love to know in person!Fans of Agatha Raisin are going to love this latest book. There has been a murder in Sumpton Harcourt, another small village in the Cotswolds. Agatha is up for the challenge. Between murders, she is often stuck looking for lost cats, etc. Great tale full of Agatha of course and murders and witches. Lots The Witches' Tree is the twenty-eight book in the Agatha Raisin series by M.C. Beaton. I love this series. I adore Agatha Raisin. She is a feisty and fun woman who I would love to know in person!Fans of Agatha Raisin are going to love this latest book. There has been a murder in Sumpton Harcourt, another small village in the Cotswolds. Agatha is up for the challenge. Between murders, she is often stuck looking for lost cats, etc. Great tale full of Agatha of course and murders and witches. Lots of fun. This book is another fun book in the series.Highly recommend The Witches Tree.
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  • Donna
    January 1, 1970
    Thanks to NetGalley and St Martin's Press for a preview copy of this book. It's been a while since I read an Agatha Raisin book and this one was worth waiting for. A mixture of mystery, comedy and romance made this an absolute delight to read. If anything, Agatha and the other characters become more amusing as the series progresses. Plenty of laugh out loud moments and an interesting storyline once again. Already looking forward to the next in the series.
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