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Publisher's Summary

Miss Emily was old, rich, and afraid - and now, she's dead. Her terrified plea to Hercule Poirot came a little too late. All that's left is a house full of greedy heirs, and a very strange letter that could solve the mystery - or add to it.

This title was previously published as Poirot Loses a Client.

©1937 Agatha Christie Limited (P)2002 HarperCollins Publishers

What listeners say about Dumb Witness

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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Bob the dog

Hugh Fraser is an outstanding narrator, capturing Poirot as well as Bob the dog perfectly.

7 people found this helpful

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Great

I loved the characters and the narrative it was a good story. Poirot was in his element, I did not guess until the end. This will become one of my favourites.

5 people found this helpful

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A wonderful Christie classic!

The thing is, it might be possible to say that some Agatha Christie books are better than others--but any one of them is still a delight to read/hear. And this does not disappoint. The shrewd Belgian detective, Hercule Poirot, is at his best as he methodically investigates and uncovers this murder, having the classic ending--with everyone gathered together to hear his pronouncement.

This story, told by Poirot's friend Hastings (and literally narrated in audio form by the talented Hugh Fraser--who played Hastings in the series) involves elderly Emily Arundell, who has died, but not before sending a letter to Poirot, indicating her worry that someone wants her dead. And she has made an unconventional arrangement in her will that will leave the entire family upset and wanting explanations.

Her dog, a terrier named Bob, is thought to have left a ball in the hall that she tripped over--which strangely triggers her worries about being someone's target--and indeed, even before Poirot can arrive to consult with her, she has died. It looks like natural causes, but Poirot knows it isn't, so he remains to solve the mystery, as he was asked by her (before her death) to do.

Wouldn't call this Christie's best book--but it is very good. It was one of the few I probably only ever read once--many years ago, so I had forgotten the story--and that made it all the more fun! Recommend. It's hard to go wrong with Agatha!

16 people found this helpful

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Delightful 'conversations' btwn Hastings and Bob

Another good whodunit. Quite the lot of characters, the greedy family, ridiculous neighbors, the silly hen of a companion... I followed the psychology, as Poirot so teaches, and had picked the likeliest personality for the murder, but had not quite worked out all of the deceptions and facts just right. What an awful family. I just adored Bob though, I think my favorite part of the book was his little woofs and "conversations" with Hastings. Masterful work by Poirot.

Great narration as always, but unusually there were the dialect mix-ups in the dialogue. Small though, and not overly confusing.

3 people found this helpful

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Another solid novel in the series.

Any additional comments?

Another masterfully written Christie novel. Interesting plot and twists. Striking differences from recent BBC Poirot episode, the book is better (not always the case with that excellent tv series). Recommended.

2 people found this helpful

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Dog Lovers Will Appreciate Bob & His Ball

I love Poirot mysteries. They are delightful, engaging, and an easy listen. Hugh Fraser is an excellent narrator and always reliable. While this was not my very favorite Poirot mystery, the wrinkle of Bob the dog and his ball is extremely memorable. The plot doesn't follow the same format as many Poirot mysteries, but contains all of Hercule's fun eccentricities--mustaches and everything!

2 people found this helpful

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Classic Poirot

A wonderful, interest story with all the usual ingenuity of Christe. The ‘dumb witness’ adds a lighthearted aspect that is rarer in Poirot’s stories, and Hugh Fraser’s performance is spectacular as always

1 person found this helpful

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Agatha, Hercule and Hastings

This was s wonderful Hercules story. My favorite part is Hastings’ interpretation of what Bob the dog was saying and thinking. Funny, poignant and spot on what I think Bob was saying, too! Hugh Frazier is the best reader for the Poirot books. Highly recommend!

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A favorite

I love Agatha Christie and Poirot, but some of these novels do lag a bit in the middle. This book is entertaining and engaging throughout. I think it’s one of her best.

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  • KZ
  • 08-06-18

Great as always

What can I say? I've never read a Poirot mystery I didn't like, and David Suchet and Hugh Fraser are two of my favourite narrators. As usual, this book is full of lifelike characters, cleverness and charm crowned with a satisfying ending. The only complaint I had with this book is that, when the killer was revealed, I didn't get the feeling of 'It all makes sense now' quite as strongly as usual. It made perfect sense that the person accused could be the killer, but most of the evidence Poirot presented against that person didn't add up to accusing them so much as clearing everyone else.

1 person found this helpful