M C Beaton is, without doubt, one of my favourite authors of all time. Nearly every cozy mystery fan will have read at least one of her books and if you haven’t yet, then here are a few reasons why you should!
Success – Can I get a little?
M C Beaton, or Marion Chesney, which is her real name has written over 100 novels in 19 different series, ranging from modern cozy mysteries to regency romances. Her two most well-known series feature Agatha Raisin and Hamish Macbeth, both of which have been made into TV series (remember Robert Carlyle rather gorgeously played Hamish in the 1990’s).
Now, that isn’t a bad career for a writer, is it? If I ever manage to get a smidgeon of that sort of success, I’d be a very happy bunny.
Gimme some of that style!
The other thing I like about her is, her writing is timeless. Often, it’s only the odd political reference that gives the game away, but certainly for any of her novels set in the regency period, you wouldn’t know.
For me, her writing is a wonderful combination of just enough description (I hate pages and pages and pages of needless setting, telling me the colour of the leaves and sky), dialogue and action. She also writes in third person omniscient, which is one of my favourites, even though it’s considered a bit old fashioned. Most of all though, she has such a wicked sense of humour that shines through and brings a smile to my face. She is so entertaining!
Nowadays, we’re also told that the murder should happen in the first chapter, to grab the reader’s attention. In a lot of her novels, the murders happen about a third of the way through. You never really realise when reading them because you’re so interested in the characters and in the story, it doesn’t matter.
Working nine to five – what a way to make a livin’!
The final part of my love-in for Marion Chesney is her amazing work ethic. She’s an amazing example of a writer who loves what they do and knows what her audience wants, producing book after book across her different series. Her death earlier this year means we’ve lost an amazing writer but as one of the best in the world at writing cozy mysteries, she’ll never be forgotten.
What’s your favourite M C Beaton novel? Let me know in the comments below!