Friday, May 30, 2014

Lord Edgware Dies by Agatha Christie

After reading CSI: Binding Ties, it was time to go back to a traditional cozy mystery. And what better than the Queen of Mysteries - Agatha Christie? I managed to find one of her books that I haven't read at Rainbow Plaza, and I thoroughly enjoyed it.

Lord Edgware Dies is a case that misleads even Poirot. And the mastermind is Lady Edgware, a woman who appears to be dumb. But, as she says, it's "a good idea to seem stupider than you are." Is it scary that I once said something similar?

Anyway, the focus of this book is whether Lady Edgware is the killer. She's mentioned many many times that she'd like to kill her husband because she won't give him a divorce. She's even mentioned the way she'll kill him. However, when the murder does happen, in the way she described, she doesn't have a motive and she has an airtight alibi - 12 prominent people who don't really know her were having dinner with her.

It's a case that confuses even Poirot. In fact, the normal braggart but lovable detective considers it one of his failures. Like many Agatha Christie mysteries, once you find out the truth, it seems oh so obvious. However, during my first reading of the book, I (like Poirot), couldn't figure out what was going on.

For a Poirot fan like me, this was a delightful read. Hastings is here as Poirot's Watson, and Poirot's version of psychology is very much in play here. Character motivation is believable and the mystery is full of twist and turns (and not a few red herrings).

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