The ABC Murders
by Agatha Christie
Purchased from the Nook Store
[#68 in my 75 book challenge]
Finishing Gretchen McNeil’s Ten inspired me to read another Agatha Christie novel, since I was in the mood for murder and mystery. The ABC Murders is a Hercule Poirot mystery about a serial killer who is murdering people in alphabetical order across England. The first murder, though preceded by a warning note sent to M. Poirot himself, appears to be domestic violence. The second, a coincidence. By the third murder, the police finally understand with Poirot has seen all along — the murders are the work of calculating sociopath with some serious inferiority issues. The race is on to pin-point the killer and prevent future attacks.
The ABC Murders was different from the other Christie novels I’ve read (Murder on the Orient Express, The Murder of Roger Ackroyd, Three Blind Mice and Other Stories, and And Then There Were None) because they didn’t follow the classic Closed Circle of Suspects mystery trope. It wasn’t all, “One of us in this room…IS A MURDERER!” but more like, “Someone is killing people randomly. Let’s catch him!” Hercule Poirot does do interviews of everyone connected to the victims, in traditional Agatha Christie style, but the story just wasn’t what I was expecting.
FINAL GRADE: C This was not my favorite Christie novel, even though it came highly recommended from various “Best of Christie” lists. However, Christie is ALWAYS worth reading. She’s the mystery queen for a reason. Her reveals are always steller, and I’m never able to guess “whodunnit” before I’m told (though I pretty much suspect every single character in the story at some point). If you love mysteries, you’ll enjoy this novel. It would also be appropriate for middle and high school students if they can tackle Christie’s prose — which they should be able to do, though Christie writes like a 1930’s British lady.
Which Christie novel should I read next? Is there another mystery author whose novels I should try?