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Publisher's Summary

Framed in the doorway of Hercule Poirot's bedroom stands an uninvited guest, coated from head to foot in dust. The man stares for a moment, then he sways and falls.

Who is he? Is he suffering from shock or just exhaustion? Above all, what is the significance of the figure 4, scribbled over and over again on a sheet of paper? Poirot finds himself plunged into a world of international intrigue, risking his life - and that of his twin brother - to uncover the truth.

©1927 Agatha Christie Limited (P)2002 HarperCollins Publishers

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.3 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    153
  • 4 Stars
    58
  • 3 Stars
    40
  • 2 Stars
    7
  • 1 Stars
    4

Performance

  • 4.8 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    187
  • 4 Stars
    38
  • 3 Stars
    7
  • 2 Stars
    0
  • 1 Stars
    1

Story

  • 4.2 out of 5.0
  • 5 Stars
    127
  • 4 Stars
    52
  • 3 Stars
    36
  • 2 Stars
    12
  • 1 Stars
    6
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  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Weak Early Christie but Performance is Masterful.

Just too incredible to satisfy. More like an absurd B-movie than the complex measured tales of her later years.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Reviewers Must Be Mistaken

Would you try another book from Agatha Christie and/or Hugh Fraser?

Yes. This book was one odd failure in the Christie collection.

Any additional comments?

I thought the reviewers who made bad comments about this book must have been mistaken. Not so. Hugh Fraser's performance was excellent, but even the best reader couldn't make the ridiculous plot less ridiculous. It was a James Bond fantasy starring Hercule Poirot, a character that doesn't fit at all. The whole thing was silly without humor. This was my ninth Christie listen, all the rest very good to excellent stories. I still want to hear more Poirot mysteries, and will bet on the fact that Christie didn't repeat the mistake she made with this one.

8 of 12 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Like a bad, less realistic James Bond book

This was not like any of the other Poirot books - no real mystery to solve, just running from place to place encountering "villains" that are more ridiculous than any Batman or Bond flick. I can't believe anyone who liked the earlier books - or mysteries in general - would like this.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story

Not really a mystery.

Well performed, but not really a mystery and that is what I look for in Agatha Christie novels.

  • Overall
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  • Liv
  • Durham, NC
  • 08-08-17

Enjoyable

This is my second time on this book, and I enjoy it, but be warned that it is not Agatha Christie's usual cozy, but more fantastical, in the "mission impossible" genre. If you have low tolerance for a willing suspension of disbelief this one might not be your thing.

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  • Brianne
  • Reeds Spring, MO, United States
  • 07-08-17

Not my favorite Poirot book

I just had a difficult time getting into this book. Not my favorite Poirot, but that's okay.

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Early dated work

Unless you're a Christie fan, I wouldn't bother reading. Its dated and not a mystery. Just a story of tracking down 4 people who want to rule the world. Actually a pre Bond, wonder if Ian was inspired.

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  • Gudrun
  • Fort Resolution, Northwest Territories, Canada
  • 02-17-17

Go Hastings

This is a convoluted Poirot which was good, but not the best. What made me give it 5 stars was the fact that I loved Hastings in it. I have read over 3/4 of the Poirot books and I like Hastings as a foil for Poirot, and so that we the audience can have the plot explained to us. But in this book Hastings comes into his own it is a must read because it gives him so much character, and makes him into a truly loyal and honourable friend.

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The Big Four

Another great Agatha Christie story which keeps you guessing about done it until the end.

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  • lerone
  • ST-CATHARINES, ontario, Canada
  • 07-16-16

The real big four

The narrator agains leads to an enjoyment of the story with his abilities to change voices. An excellent story with a great plot.

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