The Dead Ringer

April 29, 2021 - The Dead Ringer (M.C. Beaton). Private investigator Agatha Raisin is hired to find out what happened to a wealthy young woman who disappeared several years ago. The woman had dated a handsome bishop, and when he comes to the Cotswolds, Agatha sees her chance to get some answers. But, she quickly gets sidetracked by several murders and by her own chaotic love life.

The bishop and his thuggish dean are in the Cotswolds to raise money for an old folks' home that the bishop plans to open in the village of Thirk Magna. The bell ringers from the village church plan to welcome him with a special performance. One of the bell ringers suspects the bishop may have bumped off his rich girlfriend a few years back and hires Agatha to find out what happened to her.

But, before Agatha's investigation can go anywhere, the bodies start piling up. One of the bell ringers is bumped off; a local copper is killed; and a married journalist who has swept Agatha off her feet is also murdered – right in Agatha's own house! Then, Agatha herself is nearly murdered. You'd think that Agatha would devote all the resources of her PI agency to catching the killer or killers – or something. But, no. Agatha can't be bothered because all she can seem to think about is whether she should marry her erstwhile lover, Sir Charles Fraith, even if she's the one who has to do the asking.

I have read every book in this series. 29 so far. There's only one more to go, and all I can say is, "Thank god."