This is my second Agatha Christie & Hercule Poirot novel and I must admit – I’m becoming a kind of fan! I watched all three Hercule Poirot movies over the course of last week and now I’ve read two books – here are my thoughts on this story!
Hercule Poirot actually settled down. But then one of his old friends whom he used to solves murders with, Hastings, visits him – and Hercule Poirot is desperate to solve just one more crime with his old friend. And not soon after, he receives a mysterious letter written by ABC – announcing a murder on a certain date in a town called Andover. When the old woman Alice Asher is murdered in no other town than Andover and Hercule Poirot receives another letter, he is determined that the murderer is a crazy homicidal killer who kills alphabetically. Together with his old friend Hastings, the help of the police and the families of the victims and with the whole nation tracing each of his steps, Hercule Poirot is determined to find the killer and end the murders that seem to go on until the letter Z – as soon as possible.
Publication Date: January 6th 1939
Rating: 5/5 stars
The plot was different from the other book I read and the two movies I watched, but still incredible. While the other books/movie adaptions were a matter of selected suspects, so a group of people who could have been the murderer, this book simply was about an unknown killer who started to murder people throughout the country – nevertheless, it was brilliant. There was a certain suspense from page one that lasted throughout the complete book and didn’t decrease until the last page. The ending, once again, was spectacular and not not guessable. Agatha Christie simply has a way of coming up with the best possible murder cases in every way possible.
The writing was, again, nothing too special in handling the words, but still provided the book with my beloved suspense. Without displaying any violence, murder, chase or any action, Agatha Christie manages it to make a book interesting and intriguing with her use of language, which is a great gift. Her writing style is, in my opinion, concerning the suspenseful atmosphere she manages to create, very unique. I haven’t read any other mystery books where the author is able to create that much anticipation, expectancy but also uncertainty of what is about to happen or where the murder will strike next without any action or chase.
The atmosphere – full of tension, doubtfulness and anxiety – was strongly linked to her writing style. Again, the book basically consists of the detective, Hercule Poirot, asking questions to the victim’s family and friends about their whereabouts at the time of the crime, their motive and their relationship. But still, she manages to create interest in something as simple as a dialogue.
The character and protagonist, Hercule Poirot, was at his best again. With jokes, he lightened the mood and with cleverness and peculiarity, he managed to crack the case when the police couldn’t. He’s the perfect detective and the novel wouldn’t have the special touch it now possesses, without him. As always, almost every side character had a motive to kill, which is super intriguing to read. I love the fact that every character is different and that the novels don’t all contain the same features, but that motive and characteristics of the not so important people vary.
Recommendable: To everyone who enjoys suspense!
All in all, this book is perfect for anyone who enjoys a detective trying to crack a case without any information about the murderer – in other words, a suspenseful and avid mystery novel!