2008: 170. Peril at End House

“No seaside town in the south of England is, I think, as attractive as St. Loo.”

Peril at End House Agatha Christie

Having re-read all these Agatha Christie novels, I am struck by how ingenious she is (although I enjoy them more for the characters and snapshots of British life than the mysteries per se, there is no question that she writes devilishly clever mystery plots.  She might not be the most authentic in terms of blood and guts - or police procedure - but the twists are unbeatable).  This one has a clever ending, a bunch of twists and turns and no cheating! She even, for once, makes drugs part of the solution without it seeming completely ridiculous.

I also was thinking how few of the Poirot novels actually include Hastings as a character.  You tend to think of them as a pair - a rip off of Holmes and Watson, really, but Christie got rid of Hastings relatively early.  Most of Poirot’s mysteries are solved all by himself, with a revolving door of compatriots - Ariadne Oliver, Georges the valet, Sergeant Spence, Mr. Goby, Colonel Race.  I doubt if Hastings is even the most prevalent of Poirot’s amis.  This is one of the Hastings books, though, and he plays his usual role of the typical Englishman (the stand in for the reader) who could never figure it out without Poirot’s little grey cells... The plot is about an attempted murder at End House, and whether Poirot can save the life of the charming young woman who seems to be under attack, and it is, as I say, cleverly solved and fun to read.  A good early Christie.


Date/Place Completed: 11/8/08; D.C.

Categories:  Fiction, Re-read; Agatha Christie Project


© Carrie Dunsmore 2017