Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Murder on the Orient Express by Agatha Christie

Published: 1934
Pages: 322
Genre: Mystery

On board the famous Orient Express, detective Hercule Poirot was expecting a relaxing travelling experience. But when an American called Ratchett is brutally murdered by stabbing, he is called to duty solving the most shocking and confusing mystery yet. And no one is who they say...

What a classic! When I think of Agatha Christie, I think of Murder on the Orient Express. And for a good reason - this has to be one of her (if not the) most famous novels ever. It seems simple and straightforward at first, but I soon discovered that it involves a tragedy from the past, lies, deceit, and everything else we've grown to love about Christie's books.

Before the mystery starts to gain momentum, I must say that it felt like the book wasn't advancing. A good fifty pages or so were used purely to interview the passengers of the Orient Express and to gain information about them. While this was obviously important and necessary for the novel, it did feel a tad monotonous and I found myself tuning some of it out. I regret that, though, because the information presented during those interviews was critical for the rest of the mystery.

The book started to get exciting near the end, when all the pieces were coming together. Keeping with Christie's style, the detective, Hercule Poirot, was constantly dropping hints and boldly stating that he knows who committed the crime. This always adds to my anxiousness near the end! And even though I already knew the conclusion to the book (due to my having seen the movie version already. And I'll add that, because of this, I probably didn't find the conclusion as shocking as someone else would), it was simply amazing. Gorgeously set up, twists on every page, the perfect ending... what more could you want in a mystery book? Once again, Agatha Christie has proved her title of "Queen of Crime".

Recommendation: Mystery lovers will adore this book. I suggest you check it out if you've previously enjoyed Christie's books, or like the genre.


Marce said...

Glad to see your review after the great teaser.

I want to read this one. I have And then there were None, if I love that this will be my next choice.

Brenna said...

I've always wanted to read this. I've never read any Chrisie and feel like I should start with this one. Thanks for the review.

Elizabeth said...

One of my all-time favorites of Christie!
Saw your comment on All About re: Hidden Wives. Just letting you know I'm having a giveaway for it.

Juju at Tales of said...

Fantastic review! I must must must read it. Have you seen the film?

Anonymous said...

This is one of my favorite Christie books. I love all the characters and the way she skillfully includes all the clues needed to solve the mystery. Of course you don't really see all of that until you are finished and go back and reread! LOL

Emidy said...

Marce - You should read And Then There Were None. That's a good one! Hopefully you'll enjoy it, and get to read MOTOE.

Brenna - Oh, you have to read some Christie! This would be a great starting point.

Elizabeth - It's such a classic! Great, thanks for letting me know about that.

Juju - Why thank you! Yes, you've got to. And I did see the movie - before I read the book, sadly.

Kay - So true! I'm sure I missed a lot of the hints.

Aths said...

This is the book that always comes to my mind too when I think Agatha Christie! Sadly I haven't read the book nor seen the movie. But thanks for reminding me - I need to get to this treasure!

miss cindy :) said...

Love her, and I need to read this book! Great review :)

Nymeth said...

Do you think this would work well as an introduction to Christie, then? It sounds like such a great book.

BookQuoter said...

LOve this book. Great review.