Agatha Christie’s most famous murder mystery.
Just after midnight, a snowdrift stops the Orient Express in its tracks. The luxurious train is surprisingly full for the time of the year, but by the morning it is one passenger fewer. An American tycoon lies dead in his compartment, stabbed a dozen times, his door locked from the inside.
Isolated and with a killer in their midst, detective Hercule Poirot must identify the murderer – in case he or she decides to strike again.
“Need it be said – the little grey cells solve once more the seemingly insoluble. Mrs Christie makes an improbable tale very real, and keeps her readers enthralled and guessing to the end.” Times Literary Supplement
“A brilliantly ingenious story.” Dorothy L. Sayers, Daily Herald
“Ingenuity at its height … the idea is utterly novel, the setting a model of realism, and the characters a versatile, attractive crew.” Woman’s Journal
“A piece of classic workmanship .. exquisite and wholly satisfying.” News Chronicle
About the author
Agatha Christie was born in Torquay in 1890 and became, quite simply, the best-selling novelist in history. Her first novel, The Mysterious Affair at Styles, written towards the end of the First World War, introduced us to Hercule Poirot, who was to become the most popular detective in crime fiction since Sherlock Holmes. She is known throughout the world as the Queen of Crime. Her books have sold over a billion copies in the English language and another billion in over 100 foreign countries. She is the author of 80 crime novels and short story collections, 19 plays, and six novels under the name of Mary Westmacott.
APPLE BOOKS REVIEW
Hercule Poirot—Agatha Christie’s eccentric and curiously moustached detective—appeared in countless stories throughout the mystery mastermind’s career as the bestselling novelist of all time. But stuck in a Yugoslavian snow drift aboard the prestigious Orient Express, Poirot assumes his most famous investigation: the death of a wealthy American passenger named Samuel Ratchett. “The murderer is with us—on the train now,” says Poirot, who probes a marvelous cast of suspects and pieces together a nebulous web of evidence and events. First published in 1934, Christie’s classic murder mystery is a dazzling blueprint for whodunits throughout the decades … and up to today.
The best murder mystery ever
Having read a number of Agatha Christie murder mysteries it does become apparent that their quality can vary tremendously. Without giving away any of the plot this is the quintessential example of an exotic cast of characters in a 'sealed' location typical of this period and genre.
To me what makes it stand out is that I had been made aware of the solution before reading it, but it didn't detract from the enjoyment as the many layers of the puzzle unfold. It is the only novel I have multiple times and I cannot give it higher praise than that. It provides a satisfying conclusion rather than just a case of knowing whodunit, unlike the TV adaption a couple of years ago which to my mind spoilt the
essence of what the story delivers in order to be different.
Poirot, and Christie, at their best
With the faces of the stellar 1974 film cast in my mind, this tale goes to much greater depth of intrigue, and faster than any train - steam or Bullet - could travel.
I read this in the 80s when reading for pleasure had just entered my post academic life. It’s still well worth reading today.
The names are hard to pronounce so you may get lost