Some of Agatha Christie's mysteries are more about characters and some are more about mystery, and this is one of the latter. That's not to say that the characters are poor, only that the mystery itself takes center stage. It's a real whodunnit: A dinner party includes 4 criminals, whom the host claims to know have each gotten away with murder, and 4 sleuths, both professionals and amateurs......and while the 4 criminals are in a room playing bridge, one of them quietly and secretly murders the host. Whodunnit, and how will Poirot figure it out? Keep listening and find out.
Hugh Fraser does a terrific job, as I've enjoyed in the past.
There are so many pieces of this audiobook that don't seem to work, but by the end of it all they did all work together -- the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. Many of the accents seemed a little wrong, but I understood and that was OK. Some of the plot seemed wrong, but in minor ways that didn't detract from the flow. Somehow, it all worked together to create an enjoyable audiobook when all was said and done.
Although - as many have said - Sherlock doesn't appear in this book (taking place immediately after the Reichenbach Falls event), I don't agree that he doesn't isn't a part of this book.....His personality and notoriety are a strong factor in this book, playing a part in the actions of all the major characters. Still, I enjoyed it for what it is, not for being a part of the "Sherlock Holmes" world. The writing was good, the plot made sense without being too obvious, and the characters were interesting. I picked this title based on my enjoyment of House of Silk and not because I am a Holmes-ophile, and I was not disappointed.
This is a short Bond novel and feels like it needs a little filling out, which I guess isn't a surprise, as this was the novel Flemming was working on before he died, and he (reportedly) was never really satisfied with the result. However, it still has the structure and characters of a good story, and combined with a wonderful narrator (Kenneth Branagh), it was a very good listening experience. I particularly like this Bond villain, Scaramanga, for his easy attitude and bravado, and I also like the setting of Jamaica in the 60s. The written character of Bond is much more complex and self-reflective than that in most of the Bond movies (even though it's not as fleshed out in this novel), and it's a Bond I like. And there's still good action and attraction, just like people expect of Bond in movies and books.