Author: Agatha Christie
Release Date: 1934
Pages: Mass Market Paperback, 336 pages
Summary: Just after midnight, the famous Orient Express is stopped in its tracks by a snowdrift. By morning, the millionaire Samuel Edward Ratchett lies dead in his compartment, stabbed a dozen times, his door locked from the inside. One of his fellow passengers must be the murderer.
Isolated by the storm, detective Hercule Poirot must find the killer among a dozen of the dead man’s enemies, before the murderer decides to strike again (From Goodreads)
My first contact with Agatha Christie was through the television, obviously I had heard about the books before but I’ve never felt compelled to read them. That all changed after I saw an episode from the 2004 TV adaptation of “The body in the Library”, a Miss Marple mystery. I quickly become fond of the old lady and decided to explore the other characters created by Christie. It was then that I discovered Poirot ( portrayed by David Suchet, obviously), and after that I was hocked. I already knew that if a book adaptation to a screenplay was good, the original only could be better, so I quickly decided to read the books.
Surprisingly, or not, I’d never read (or seen), one of the most famous books from the Hercule Poirot’s mysteries: Murder on the Orient Express. So a couple weeks ago, when I was packing to go for a short vacation, I decided to bring it with me. It was a great idea.
Murder in the Orient Express is a quick but gripping read that has a truly unexpected ending (at least for me).
Once again Christie shows a great ability to create a story with a complex but page turning plot, picturesque characters set in an interesting location ( a train stopped in the middle of Yugoslavia), creating the perfect atmosphere for the reader to dive in the pages and forget everything else around him.
Poirot, oh Poirot… you are my favourite PI, seriously, I just love all your oddness. Seriously, Poirot is the perfect detective, don’t you think? He is not, tall and strong, as the detectives that appear in some not very good detective books, he is not the heart-breaking macho, or the noisy reporter, he is just Poirot. A short man, with a mustache, pince-nez, a prominent belly, an egg-shaped head and a ridiculous accent.
The secundary characters of this particular novel, aren’t the best supporting characters that Christie wrote, but they work well as a whole. My favourite is Mrs. Hubbard, an old american lady, that loves her daughter and loves talking about her. She is just lovable and very energetic, and I admire her for doing such a long and tiring travel at such age.
I really enjoyed the social criticism in the book, some of them is still accurate.
Now, about the clues, don’t worry I wont spoil. There are some pretty obvious discrepancies in the depositions, but, in this case, I found very hard to find the murder, so I advise you o be extra careful and to pay attention to every single detail.
What else to say that it’s just another, fantastic Agatha Christie novel?
“The impossible cannot have happened, therefore the impossible must be possible in spite of appearances.”
“If you confront anyone who has lied with the truth, he will usually admit it – often out of sheer surprise. It is only necessary to guess right to produce your effect.”