Monthly Archives: August 2011

Lord Edgware Dies

Lord Edgware Dies-Another of Hercule Poirot’s mysteries. But what makes this one wanting to be read is the narration, style in which Christie bases her plot and the introduction of the characters. The very methods of Poirot, to the seasoned reader may appear as deja vu since he might have read a few or all of Poirot’s cases. Nevertheless, it is interesting to take up Poirot’s mantle for the few hours one reads the novel and try to out gesss the little Belgian. A sharp exercise to our grey cells.

In a party, Hercule Poirot is approached by a lady who seeks his help in getting rid of her eccentric husband, Lord Edgware so that she can marry and start a fresh life. In his characteristic way, Poirot refuses at first, but agrees due to the persuasive manners of the fashionista, to have an appointment with her husband. His job-to get the man to agree for a divorce which the lady deems as an impossible task.

To Poirot’s surprise, the husband agrees too readily and the first scent of suspicion lands in Poirot’s mind. And to confirm them, Lord Edgware is murdered the very night he met Hercule Poirot.

As Poirot plunges into the investigation, doubts cloud the very nature of his question-of who killed the man? Poirot, though working out various angles, is clueless in arriving at the identity of the murderer. Contradictory evidence, multiple motives make his job not an easy one. And his theory that the murderer will strike again is provd when a lady is killed which looks like an accidnt.

The murderer plays a game of cat and mouse with Poirot, hiding and revealing clues here and there. Added to the queer nature is the nonchalant attitude of the widow, who expresses nothing but happiness on being ridf of a husband like Lord Edgware.

The illumination comes at last, and what an illumination! From then on, Poirot is all action. The chief players are accosted with their respective lies and evidences and as if in a dreamy state, Poirot pulls out the rabbit. And allĀ  rests on a flimsy piece of evidence that even Poirot, with his methodical sense had overlooked.

Yes, it is indeed one of Poirot’s best.


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The Third Girl

Every one of Poirot’s adventures gives a working to our own grey cells. How does the little Belgian conjure the solution to this seemingly impossible situation? How does he produce those miracles from his armchair? He is indeed a magician, an illusionist, who can truely pull out a rabbit out of an empty hat, in an intellectual sense.

The Third Girl by Agatha Christie is one such novel where we find the intricate workings of Poirot’s grey cells produce a result never thought of. A completely different reasoning, yet logical in every chink and backed by solid proofs-that is what it is.

Hercule Poirot is interrupted in his excellent breakfast of brioche and chocolat (his favorite) by a girl who drops a hint very causlly that she may have committed a murder-and disappears to his astonishment. The bewildered Poirot is left to pick up the loose threads and connect them into a single strand.

And how interesting! From then on, Poirot uses all his talent to trace that girl and uncovers clue after clue(the first is provided by his friend that the girl is one of three girls sharing a flat. Hence the third girl). But all is not as it seems as he wishes to find, especially when his instinct tells him to expect a murder and nothing happens..

The plot is thickened further by a host of interesting characters from the missing girl’s household to her boyfriend to the byways of London and leading to South Africa, ranging with lunacy, hate, jealousy and lack oif love, fueling a myriad of possibilities-especially when a pistol isd found with missing bullets in her wardrobe..

An entire chapter goes to Poirot working his grey cells, arranging each fact and coming to a daring conclusion-defying everyone’s belief. And as the affair gets murkier, it only remains to be seen what will happen to the third girl..

A fine read and a must for every Poirot collector. Enfin!

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