Friday, December 16, 2011


Pages: 224
Date: 16/12/2011
Grade: 4
Details: Short Stories

I wanted to read at least one seasonal book during this Christmas time, and this seemed a nice choice. Christie’s books seem appropriate for this season due to their tone and settings alone, regardless of the time of year they take place in.
As it turned out, in this collection of stories only the first is set during Christmas celebrations, but that didn’t affect my enjoyment of the book at all.
In “The Adventure of the Christmas Pudding” Hercule Poirot is invited to join a traditional countryside Christmas in order to find a missing ruby.
A body found in a chest, an irresistible woman and a murder that could only have been committed by one of two men (or could it?) give Poirot a fascinating investigation in “The Mystery of the Spanish Chest”.
“The Under Dog” has Poirot investigation when a widow suspects that her nephew is not the one who killed her husband, despite all the evidence saying he is.
In “Four and Twenty Blackbirds” it is a solitary man’s eating habits which explain his apparently accidental death for Poirot.
An eccentric millionaire tells Poirot of a recurring dream in which he kills himself only to be found shot a few days later. It appears the man has acted out his dream, but our detective proves otherwise.
“Greenshaw’s Folly” is the only story featuring Miss Marple in this book and has her untangling a confusion of identities and family relations.

I always enjoy Agatha Christie’s mysteries. Yes, she does cheat a bit at times in that she doesn’t give the reader all the information which is available to the detectives in her stories. But she makes up for that with the wonderful characters she has created for us. Her descriptions of people and places are wonderful, sharp and not always nice, which makes them all the more enjoyable for the reader.
Now that my library has quite a few Agatha Christie books on its shelves, I can see myself bringing one home with me regularly for moments of nostalgic and relaxing reading pleasure.

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