The second Agatha Christie Weekly Wonder is here! This is a series in which Jeannie and I review books which are definitely worth being on your reading list. We tell you just enough about the book for you to get an idea of it, but we don’t give out spoilers.
This week’s Wonder is-
SO, WHAT’S UP WITH THE STORY?
Hercule Poirot receives a letter that is seemingly a hoax or a prank of some sort. Signed by the mysterious ABC, the letter taunts Poirot’s detective skills, and challenges him with a morbid forewarning- “Look out for Andover, on the 21st of the month.”
Everyone puts the letter down to a prankster’s whim- except Poirot.
And when the 21st dawns, Poirot’s hunch is proven right. Mrs Alice Ascher is found murdered at her little shop in Andover. An open ABC railway guide is found near the dead woman.
Faced by what appears to be a ruthless, homicidal and egotistical madman, Poirot’s skills are put to the test. Will he prevail in sniffing out the murderer? Or is the breadcrumb trail left by ABC’s letters more than what it poses to be?
Read it to find out!
A GLIMPSE BETWEEN THE PAGES
“Let us see, Mr. Clever Poirot, just how clever you can be.”
“There is nothing so terrible as to live in an atmosphere of suspicion – to see eyes watching you and the love in them changing to fear – nothing so terrible as to suspect those near and dear to you – It is poisonous – a miasma.”
“Try and vary your methods as you will, your tastes, your habits, your attitude of mind, and your soul is revealed by your actions.”
“Death, mademoiselle, unfortunately creates a prejudice. A prejudice in favour of the deceased… There is a great charity always to the dead.”
WHAT I LIKE ABOUT IT
- Hercule Poirot is a lovable character. His quirks, his intermittent French, his moustache, his sharp deductions- Poirot’s a riot. This endearing Belgian detective is a character who will keep you hooked.
- Captain Hastings’ narrative is amazing. As Watson is to Sherlock, so is Hastings is to Poirot. Another interesting fact here is that the narration deviates from Hastings’ point of view quite often. Chapters titled “Not from Captain Hastings’ Personal Narrative” are a third person account of the story. This is not the usual for Poirot books and makes for a fresh reading experience.
- The ABC Murders has the classic Agatha Christie quality to it- it keeps you guessing till the very end. The plot twist will leave you stunned. The final result will be completely unexpected.
- Si ingénieux! It’s skillfully written. Once more, we can only marvel at the plot ideas which Christie comes up with.
- A serial killer, on the loose, working his way through the alphabet, leaving a trail of deliberate clues to irritate Poirot. A sure recipe for a book that can’t be put down.
- The story doesn’t get boring or repetitive anywhere. The action is well paced and flows easily.
The ABC Murders should definitely be on your reading list. Tell me if you liked it!