In the village of Broughton, a ninety-year-old battle of the sexes has often occurred, with men trying to oppose an event that the women have managed to successfully hold without interruption, until it culminates with casualties on both sides - Mildred Danvers, an elderly woman who had returned on the day of a funeral and poisoned in her hotel room, and Rev.
Anthony Gant, shot during a major event being held in the village green, in view of many. It soon becomes clear someone may have wished to kill both to cover up a dark truth, and soon Barnaby has to figure out who amongst the village wanted both dead, complicated further when Gant's curate is murdered next. Villagers in Elverton-cum-Latterly are up in arms and divided, over the building of a supermarket.
Things soon come to a head when independent environmental supervisor, Frank Hopkirk, is found stabbed to death at a Jubb's Timber Yard, the site of the new supermarket, by a pair of children. When Barnaby and Jones investigate to determine who wanted Hopkirk dead, they find out that he secretly came to the village under various aliases for sexual rendezvous with various women in fantasy role-playing scenarios, and that he had been making further investigations on the future development site and having doubts over claims it was contaminated.
Either someone didn't like his investigations, or someone didn't like his sexual appetite, but either way, Barnaby finds himself investigating lies and more to uncover the truth. David Lawrence. Barnaby and DC Ben Jones Jason Hughes find themselves attempting to unravel the deaths of a choir tenor, and later a bird watcher, before more murders occur. The case is complicated by a rivalry between the Midsomer Worthy and Aston Wherry choirs, due to compete in an upcoming competition, and suspicions that an art scam is to be conducted, and soon Barnaby and Jones become concerned about a local woman, who they fear may become a victim herself.
Particularly when it becomes clear the bird watcher had been photographing suspicious activity of late. A few months ago, Annie Woodrow was arrested, accused of murdering her friend, Frances Trevelyan, on the motive of wanting Frances' husband. Her time in court has come, but DCI Barnaby is certain she still is holding things back in regards to the murder, and decides to monitor the trial.
Yet a chance remark by Frances' youngest daughter, and a meeting with an old friend and psychiatrist, makes him begin to doubt the evidence for her conviction. Soon he and DC Jones, awaiting news of his promotion to DS, find themselves reinvestigating the case, and it soon becomes clear that they may have missed details that could implicate another in the murder.
A disused airfield near Morton Fendle is the location for a romantic evening between young Simon Bright and his girlfriend Laura Sharp - absolutely nothing could ruin their date. The next morning, when Frances Kirby is out for her morning jog, she notices the vintage car they were in up at the airfield, containing Simon Bright's dead body, with Laura nowhere to be seen.
Jones can't work out whether it was a suicide pact or murder.
Furthermore, they've got to find Miss Sharp and their investigation leads them to linking Simon and Laura with the villagers of Morton Fendle, who met at Elaine Trim's dancing classes. Eventually, the Barnaby family plus Jones make it to a 40s style dance night at the village hall before more villagers start turning up dead. Things become even more complex when Rex's body is found in a nearby river, bearing wounds that suggest he was murdered.
Barnaby and Jones are soon on the case, trying to establish who would have wanted the elderly man dead. Several people soon come forward with multiple wills, which confuse the matter, but when two more people, close friends of Rex, are also murdered, the investigation raises question on the motive, leading Barnaby to wonder if it was down to finances, passion, or something from Rex's past. Following the death of Alan King while on a business trip to China, the family company, King's Crystal, is in financial trouble.
As plans to shut the Midsomer Magna factory are being put into action, Alan's wife Hilary and brother Charles are married in the village church - much to the dismay of Alan's son Ian. In addition to strife between members of the family, the factory workers are outraged at the loss of their jobs. So when company accountant Peter Baxter is found murdered, Barnaby and Jones suspect a disgruntled employee is to blame.
But in order to investigate the matter further, Jones is forced to work undercover, and infiltrate the local group of Freemasons in the village. The music lovers of Midsomer County are delighted when a host of bands arrives for the Midsomer Rocks festival.
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Barnaby himself is particularly looking forward to seeing recently re-formed rock band, Hired Gun, perform on stage, but he soon gets close to the band for rather unfortunate reasons. During their opening performance, the band's singer, Mimi Suzi Quatro , falls to the ground dead - electrocuted by a wire that had been run through the microphone stand. Barnaby and Jones soon find the rest of the band could be targets, and when another is killed, questions are raised as to whether former band member, Ginger Foxton, who went missing for 30 years and is presumed dead, is still at large.
The detectives soon have to delve into a world of rock music, drug use and greed, to find the truth. The detectives are baffled as to a motive for murder - until they consider that the newly engaged Dr James Kirkwood may have been the intended victim. Before long, Barnaby and Jones are heading to Wales - former home to Delyth Mostyn, James's fiancee, to delve deeper into the mystery.
There are certainly possible suspects in the murder and attempt on Kirkwood, from Delyth's children, who oppose the engagement, Delyth's husband, and more, as the detectives investigate things, in hopes of uncovering the truth before a major walk is to take place on Mount Snowdon. In the build-up to Luxton Deeping's annual photographic exhibition, a battle rages between the traditional and digital photographers of the pretty village.
The dispute seems harmless enough - until Lionel Bell is found murdered in a nearby woodland, strangled with the cord of his light meter. Barnaby soon gets to work tracking down the killer, but it seems someone is trying to implicate the detective in the murder. And once he is replaced on the case, finding the culprit seems less likely than ever, as his replacement is more concerned of an upcoming wedding than the investigation.
Barnaby is forced to work off the case to uncover who is framing him, and who wants dead other photographers in the village.
The residents of Midsomer Magna are thrilled when a production crew arrives at the local manor house to film a version of The Scarlet Pimpernel. But the crew members aren't the only visitors to the area - Jones has spotted notorious criminal George Ince nearby. But when the director, Nick Cheney, is found dead - his head severed by a prop guillotine - Barnaby must discover who would have wanted the victim dead. It soon becomes clear that things are not so simple, and the detectives soon have to shift through varying motives, layered by lies, hidden truths, and a possible robbery to be committed.
Barnaby is in Midsomer Holm, bidding farewell to reformed criminal Ronnie Tyler, who has taken part in a rehabilitation scheme in the village. Also present is disgraced ex-policeman Jack Colby, a former colleague of Barnaby's - but Jack refuses to talk to his old friend. When Jack is murdered, the detective must delve into the dark secrets in the victim's past.
There are certainly dark secrets to uncover, and Barnaby has to determine whether the victim's part in a scandal years earlier at Causton police station, is key to the mystery behind his death.
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It isn't long before he finds that Eddie Marston is attempting blackmail, and soon murdered as a result, and that Lord Holm is in love with Jack's wife, psychotherapist Gina. It's a good day for the Hicks family, as the name of Tommy Hicks - who was executed during World War I for "cowardice and desertion" - is added to the list on Midsomer Parva's war memorial. Tommy's son Lionel and grandson Dave, mayor of Causton and whom Barnaby does not like owing to dodgy building work by the mayor's company , are thrilled, but the snooty Hammonds are decidedly less pleased.
Henry, the patriarch of the Hammond family, is particularly riled by his insalubrious neighbours, and has nurtured a long-running feud with the Hickses. But the evening after a battle re-enactment in the village, Henry is murdered - and Barnaby must delve into the history of the two families to find the killer, discovering a web of fraud, lies, and hidden truths. At the lavish reception at Bledlow Hall that follows, however, tragedy strikes - maid of honour Marina Fellowes is found murdered in one of the rooms by some of the guests.
With their honeymoon cancelled, the Fitzroys must contend with a police presence in their home, as Barnaby and Jones try to learn more about the family history. It soon becomes clear there are secrets, deception, and an illegtimate son involved in the mystery, which is further complicated when the estate manager is killed by an arrow. Barnaby and Jones are in Dunstan to investigate the deaths of a reclusive couple.
As they try to establish whether Ron and Libby Wilson were murdered or died of natural causes, their attention is drawn to a dispute raging between a local builder and road protesters nearby. When another death occurs, the detectives learn that there are plenty of dark secrets and fierce hostilities in this apparently idyllic village.
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Will Jack Purdy's quick temper lead to violence? How far would the protesters go to prevent the bypass being built? And do current events somehow relate to the death of Michael Wilson many years earlier? When the body of Londoner Charlie Finleyson is discovered in woodland near Midsomer Sonning, Barnaby and Jones find themselves investigating employees at local Midsomer Life magazine. It turns out the dead man was married to the ex-wife of Guy Sandys, the wealthy owner of the publication. As the detectives become aware of a feud between Guy and the proprietor of the Morecroft Hotel, tensions are also heating up between the locals and visiting Londoners.
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Soon Barnaby and Jones find themselves to trying to piece together the truth about the murder, and learn that someone might be trying to conceal something in their past. A children's magic show goes horribly wrong when one of the performers dies during a trick. Barnaby and Jones discover that the victim was poisoned with a rare toxin extracted from Ecuadorean poison frogs - so the hunt is on for a particularly ruthless and imaginative killer.
The detectives soon learn that a feud is raging between local occult practitioner Ernest Balliol and famous writer Aloysius Wilmington.
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While some of the villagers - such as Ernest's daughter Isolde - believe that powerful magical forces are at play, others think the reasons for the bloodshed may have their roots in the distant past. Barnaby and Jones soon find themselves delving into the occult, magic, and ancients books of power, to determine what happened, and soon sense a mixture of both might be the motive for the murder, when a book shop owner is killed with shattered glass, laced in the same poison.
Barnaby and Jones are forced to take part in a team building exercise and Tom has plenty of problems dealing with the young, new, acting Chief Superintendent, John Cotton Nick Fletcher. Following an explosion in a truck that had been stored in a truck depot, a body is soon discovered in a nearby lake, which turns out to be Alec Grainger, who had been seen arguing with James Parkes Joseph Millson , the son of Colonel Matt Parkes Tim Pigott-Smith.
James appears to be involved in shady business deals and is blamed by his grandmother Caroline Halsey Judy Parfitt — and others — for the suicide of a woman he got pregnant two years before. Barnaby and Jones find themselves delving into a mixture of fraud, smuggling, and lies, trying to piece together the truth. When two couples vanish into thin air in the village of Monks Barton, Barnaby and Jones hear rumours of haunted woods and witchcraft. Barnaby remains sceptical of this, even when an unidentified body is found in a shallow grave and the missing start turning up dead.
He soon has to determine if ghosts, criminals, or something else, is behind the abductions and murders.