A far-from-warm welcome greets Hercule Poirot as he arrives for lunch at Lucy Angkatell's country house. A man lies dying by the swimming pool, his blood dripping into the water. His wife stands over him, holding a revolver.
As Poirot investigates, he begins to realize that beneath the respectable surface lies a tangle of family secrets and everyone becomes a suspect.
This title was previously published as Murder After Hours.
©1946 Agatha Christie Limited (P)2002 HarperCollins Publishers
Love books! Classics and lighter fiction, mysteries (not too violent please :-). And selective non-fiction--whatever takes my fancy.
This is one of Agatha Christie's books that features Hercule Poirot. But oddly, only scarcely. His role is very slight, and the book could easily have been written without him.
He has taken a summer place near two houses where the main characters are staying. John Christow is doctor who brings his wife Gerta to a weekend party at the Angkatell's house. There are a few other people: Midge, a cousin, Edward a son, David--who considers them all snobs, Henrietta, a sculptress, and a movie star who appears into the doctor's life after many years, and a couple of loyal servants.
There are a lot of interactions between the characters, even (unusually) a fair amount of internal, private thoughts for some of them. Poirot happens to be visiting for lunch on the day of the murder, and arrives just seconds after it has occurred, and becomes involved for that reason. But this never turns out to be one of his classic mysteries, where he lines everyone up at the end, and reveals the murderer. He does figure it out, but the style is just so different, I felt some disappointment to miss the usual presentation. Christie is always good, but this is one of the weaker ones, in my opinion. Recommend, but with that observation about it.
This really stood out for me as a different type of Christie mystery, and a very different Poirot mystery. This is probably not for fans of Poirot, because he is really just barely involved in the story or the mystery, and, if fact, the author once said she was sorry she even put him in this story at all. But I loved it. The characters were deeper and more complex, and the story line seemed to take precedence over the mystery, if that makes any sense.
A better written story.
Most definitely. I love her books (except for this one).
I'm a big fan but was extremely disappointed in this book. The storyline was like a soap opera. There was hardly any investigating done by Hercule Poirot. Everyone just showed up at his door and told him things. Even the revelation of the murderer was vague and anti-climactic. I should have known I wouldn't like it when it took me so many times starting the book over to try and "get into it".
I thoroughly enjoyed this audiobook. Hugh Fraser is so talented, the story is good, and the mystery surprising. Loved it!
A pretty good plot but too much introspection on the part of the characters and not nearly enough involvement of Poirot himself. He is almost a shadow who shows up to guide things along. Didn't feel like I was following him along in the events and investigation.
He is able to keep my attention.
I have enjoyed each of these books, always a good read.
I am living my life in such a way that when my feet hit the floor in the morning, satan shudders and says, 'O crap, she's awake!'
As usual, the book supersedes the movie. The story was well written, it kept me guessing how different it would be to the movie. The the characters were more developed in the book.
Another AC fave.
How Idles on a pedestal do fall. Twist and turn around the circle to the beginning again. The end of an Idle.
Dane Christie's understanding & portrayal of human emotion, and human weakness is striking and profound as ever in this story. And now I don't like anyone reading her besides Hugh Fraser - he's truly masterful.
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