This is the fourth book in this authorised series of novels featuring Agatha Christie’s Belgian detective Hercule Poirot, and in my opinion it’s by far the best so far. As in the previous stories, the tale is narrated by Inspector Catchpool, a character who is 75% Captain Hastings and 25% Inspector Japp, and while previous books have suffered by Poirot being absent for large sections of the narrative, that isn’t a problem this time around as the ubiquitous sleuth is ever present. The author stays faithful to the original novels in terms of characters, settings and plot devices and that pays handsome dividends as this gripping tale unfolds, holding your attention from beginning to end. Poirot is asked to investigate a murder at a country house, but without any of the occupants knowing the reason for his visit. En route there by luxury coach, a distressed fellow passenger claims she needs to change seats or she will be murdered. As you’d expect, there are plenty of false trails, red herrings and misdirections among the genuine clues, as Poirot realises the two seemingly unrelated events may in fact be connected. The novel has a faster pace than some of Christie’s originals, which keeps the reader fully engaged throughout, and this masterfully plotted thriller is an absolute must read for crime fans.
Length of Read:Medium
Might appeal to people who enjoyed…
The days when Agatha Christie ruled this genre.
One thing you’ve learned
This novel marks the centenary of Poirot’s first literary appearance.