202 Following

Wanda's Book Reviews

I am currently reading my way through a long list of science fiction and fantasy titles.  (http://www.npr.org/2011/08/07/138938145/science-fiction-and-fantasy-finalists if you are interested in the list).

Currently reading

Charlotte Perkins Gilman, Ann J. Lane
Wizard and Glass
Stephen King, Dave McKean
River of Blue Fire
Tad Williams
Richard Ford
Progress: 36/420 pages

The ABC Murders / Agatha Christie

The ABC Murders - Agatha Christie

When Alice Asher is murdered in Andover, Hercule Poirot is already on to the clues. Alphabetically speaking, it's one down, twenty-five to go.

There's a serial killer on the loose. His macabre calling card is to leave the ABC Railway guide beside each victim's body. But if A is for Alice Asher, bludgeoned to death in Andover; and B is for Betty Bernard, strangled with her belt on the beach at Bexhill; then who will Victim C be?



I read this book to fill the 13 square of my 2019 Halloween Bingo Card.

I chose this Christie novel, the thirteenth Hercule Poirot, for this Bingo square and I was not disappointed. It was an entertaining novel and I enjoyed Poirot’s deft solution.

Two things I noticed: first, after a summer of reading Sherlock Holmes, I couldn’t help but realize what a Watson-like role is played by Hastings in this novel. Poirot actually refers to Holmes a couple of times, as when he is gently rebuking Hastings at one point:

”Yes, the clue--it is always the clue that attracts you. Alas that he did not smoke the cigarette and leave the ash, and then step in it with a shore that has nails of a curious pattern.”

Secondly, I was struck by the number of times that a novel from 1936 states as given some of the guidelines set down by the FBI’s Behavioural Science Unit:

”He acts as the writer of the letter would act--goes at once to the police--pushes himself to the fore--enjoys his position.”

Someone at some point also says, “If you make it public, you’re playing ABC’s game.” I hadn’t realized how much received wisdom was codified by the FBI.

I always enjoy Dame Agatha--even the books that aren’t her greatest always give me something interesting to think about. This one was fun.