Saturday, 30 March 2013

''A Murder Is Announced''- Book review

Author: Agatha Christie
Published: 1950

Genres: Novel, Mystery, Crime, Suspense 

Rating: 4 out of 5


Believe it or not, this is the first Agatha Christie that I have read- and I loved it so much, SO MUCH, that I will be reading more Agatha Christie in future and I guess she will become one of my favorite authors. ''A Murder Is Announced'' is a wonderful detective novel, a great mystery filled with lots of suspense, and yes, lots of humor.

In the peaceful village Chipping Cleghorn, villagers are startled to see in the newspaper a notice:   A murder is announced and will take place on Friday, October 29th, at Little Paddocks, at 6:30 p.m. Friends accept this, the only intimation.

Villagers assume this strange notice to be the invitation for a murder game. Little Paddocks is the residence of elderly Letitia Blacklock, her friend Dora Bunner, her distant cousins Patrick and Julia, a tenant Philippa Haymes, and a foreign refugee, Mitzi, serving as a maidservant. Miss Deadlock nor any of the other residents of the house has no idea about who put the notice. They think that someone did this as a joke. But they know a lot of people will be coming to their house at the evening, so they prepare food and slightly decorate the house.

Guests arrive in due time, and in 6:30, suddenly the light automatically turns out, and someone enters with a flashlight and a revolver. He shoots at Miss Blacklock twice, and with another shot, he kills himself.

Everybody turns on the light. Miss Blacklock is slightly injured in her neck, and the assaulter is... dead. It is suspected that the assaulter either committed suicide or shot himself accidentally. The assaulter is identified as Rudi Scherz, a worker of a hotel, and with criminal records.

Everything becomes so confusing. Who might have attempted to murder the charming and warm Miss Blacklock? Why? Did somebody tell Scherz to go and murder Miss Scherz? Why did all these happen? And if the person behind all these couldn't murder Miss Blacklock at the first attempt, certainly her life is still at risk.

The elderly Miss Marple has her entrance, making the work much easier for the police, by her experiences and clever mind.

I really loved ''A Murder is Announced''. I liked Agatha Christie's way of telling the story. And what I loved the most about it is, as it as suspense, it is also filled with lots of humor and warmth. Slowly, it takes a darker turn, but some of the humor always remains. I liked most of the characters. But somehow, I found the odd maidservant Mitzi to be the most amusing character. Her sudden shrieks and style of talking made me burst into laughter. (And also, I shouldn't forget to mention that Patrick referring Mitzi's cakes as ''Delicious Death'' and Mitzi's protests to it were also hilarious).

Suspense is aplenty. Every character, when trying to figure out the mystery, gives useful hints that makes one sit straight and wonder, ''What is going to happen next?" The solution to all these mysteries is VERY unpredictable and interesting and well-written and well-thought. Agatha Christie was certainly a genius.

If you like light, dark, suspenseful, humorous, mystery novels, then I'd strongly recommend this one!

4 out of 5


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