The new Hercule Poirot novel – another brilliant murder mystery that can only be solved by the eponymous Belgian detective and his ‘little grey cells’.
Since the publication of her first book in 1920, Agatha Christie wrote 33 novels, two plays and more than 50 short stories featuring Hercule Poirot. Now, for the first time ever, the guardians of her legacy have approved a brand new novel featuring Dame Agatha's most beloved creation.
Hercule Poirot's quiet supper in a London coffee house is interrupted when a young woman confides to him that she is about to be murdered. She is terrified, but begs Poirot not to find and punish her killer. Once she is dead, she insists, justice will have been done.
Later that night, Poirot learns that three guests at the fashionable Bloxham Hotel have been murdered, a cufflink placed in each one’s mouth. Could there be a connection with the frightened woman? While Poirot struggles to put together the bizarre pieces of the puzzle, the murderer prepares another hotel bedroom for a fourth victim…
In the hands of internationally bestselling author Sophie Hannah, Poirot plunges into a mystery set in 1920s London – a diabolically clever puzzle that can only be solved by the talented Belgian detective and his ‘little grey cells’.
“Hannah gets it right in every particular – her extraordinary feat is to make the reader forget very quickly that the novel is not, in fact, written by Dame Agatha herself.”—The Times
“Poirot purists will be in seventh heaven.”—Daily Telegraph
“Within the first few pages of The Monogram Murders it is obvious that we are in safe hands. Sophie Hannah has written a novel that would have delighted the Queen of Crime.”—The Independent
“A brilliant new murder mystery which picks up where the grande dame of crime left off”—Mail on Sunday
“Both faithful to the character and an entirely worthy addition to the canon. The plot is as tricky as anything written by Agatha Christie. Nothing is obvious or predictable in this very difficult Sudoku of a novel. The Monogram Murders has a life and freshness of its own. Poirot is still Poirot. Poirot is back.”— Alexander McCall Smith in The New York Times
“Sophie Hannah had large boots to fill… Nevertheless, she manages it with considerable wit, charm and ingenuity.”—Sunday Express
“Equal parts charming and ingenious, dark and quirky and utterly engaging … I was thrilled to see Poirot in such very, very good hands. Reading The Monogram Murders was like returning to a favourite room of a long-lost home.”—Gillian Flynn, author of Gone Girl
“Perfect … a pure treat for Agatha Christie fans.”—Tana French, author of The Secret Place
“Sophie Hannah’s The Monogram Murders does Christie proud. Our favourite detective is back and in impeccable form!”—Charles Todd
“Sophie Hannah is a prodigious talent. I can’t wait to see what she does next.”—Laura Lippman
Hannah (The Orphan Choir) does a superb job of channeling Agatha Christie in this wholly successful pastiche authorized by the Christie estate. One evening in February 1929, Hercule Poirot is dining alone at a London coffee shop when a woman arrives who looks as if she had "come face to face with the devil." Poirot joins the distraught woman, known at first as Jennie, who tells the sleuth that no one can help her because she's "already dead," and that no one should search for her killer. "The crime must never be solved," she proclaims. Another cryptic remark Jennie makes before fleeing into the night "please let no one open their mouths" resonates with Poirot and Insp. Edward Catchpool, the Scotland Yard detective with whom he rooms, after two women and a man are found poisoned in a hotel near Piccadilly Circus, each with a monogrammed gold cuff link inserted in his or her mouth. The rest of the novel lives up to the promise of the opening, complete with dazzling deductions, subtle cluing, false endings, and superb prose. After the first chapter, Catchpool, who brings his own psychological baggage to the case, serves splendidly as the book's narrator. Lovers of classic whodunits can only hope Hannah continues to offer her take on the great Belgian detective.
An okay read.
I am not a fan of first person writing, however the story was entertaining.
This book isn't bad but it isn't Agatha Christie either. I know no one can be but this isn't even in the could be an ok AC book. I say read it but if you are an AC fan then don't expect too much. Good story but non for Hercule Poirot.
Not the Poirot I remember.
The main attraction of this book is the return of Poirot. It's disappointing, then, that there are clear instances where the character is markedly different to the one that Christie created. The use of a first-person narrator seems lazy - a way of avoiding having to make this a novel actually about Poirot, where more of the character-driven elements concern the Scotland Yard detective narrator. It's a shame, really, since the author shows some excellent moments of writing to Poirot's established character, especially when describing moments that take place without the narrator's direct involvement.