Mystery fiction is a loosely-defined term that is often used as a synonym of detective fiction — in other words a novel or short story in which a detective (either professional or amateur) solves a crime. The term “mystery fiction” may sometimes be limited to the subset of detective stories in which the emphasis is on the puzzle element and its logical solution (cf. whodunit), as a contrast to hardboiled detective stories which focus on action and gritty realism. However, in more general usage “mystery” may be used to describe any form of crime fiction, even if there is no mystery to be solved. For example, the Mystery Writers of America describes itself as “the premier organization for mystery writers, professionals allied to the crime writing field, aspiring crime writers, and those who are devoted to the genre”.
The discovery of a dead body in the woods on Thanksgiving Weekend brings Chief Inspector Armand Gamache and his colleagues from the Surete du Quebec to a small village in the Eastern Townships. Gamache cannot understand why anyone would want to deliberately kill well-loved artist Jane Neal, especially any of the residents of Three Pines - a place so free from crime it doesn't even have its own police force.
But Gamache knows that evil is lurking somewhere behind the white picket fences and that, if he watches closely enough, Three Pines will start to give up its dark secrets...
About the book
First book in the series with Armande Ganache as the protagonist. The book is set in Canada, in Quebec therefore it’s where French is wildly diffuse.
It’s Canadian Thanksgiving but Gamache has to work. A woman was found fatally wounded by an arrow in a small town not far from Montreal. Everyone thinks it was a hunting accident, but who shot the arrow?
Just after midnight, a snowdrift stops the Orient Express in its tracks as it travels through the mountainous Balkans. 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.
One of the passengers is none other than detective Hercule Poirot. On vacation.
Isolated and with a killer in their midst, Poirot must identify the murderer—in case he or she decides to strike again.
About the book
Last review of 2021, I still have a read book that I need to review but I will post it in the new year.
We are on the famous train that has inspired directors and screenwriters so much. Perhaps it is the best known book by Agatha in the world, but is it worth it? Is its notoriety justified?
Poirot is travelling with other passengers when the train stops due to snow. In addition, a passenger was killed during the night. Was it someone from outside or is there a killer on the train?
Poirot had been present when Jane bragged of her plan to ‘get rid of’ her estranged husband. Now the monstrous man was dead. And yet the great Belgian detective couldn’t help feeling that he was being taken for a ride.
After all, how could Jane have stabbed Lord Edgware to death in his library at exactly the same time she was seen dining with friends? And what could be her motive now that the aristocrat had finally granted her a divorce?
About the book
Lady Edgware must eliminate her husband from her life. And to do so, she asks Poirot to help her. But she doesn’t ask for a murder, of course, she asks Hercule to persuade her husband to sign the divorce. And Poirot is shocked when he learns from Mr. Edgware that not only he also wants a divorce, but that he has already told his wife.
In Hercule Poirot's Christmas, the holidays are anything but merry when a family reunion is marred by murder — and the notoriously fastidious investigator is quickly on the case. The wealthy Simeon Lee has demanded that all four of his sons — one faithful, one prodigal, one impecunious, one sensitive — and their wives return home for Christmas. But a heartwarming family holiday is not exactly what he has in mind. He bedevils each of his sons with barbed insults and finally announces that he is cutting off their allowances and changing his will. Poirot is called in the aftermath of Simeon Lee's announcement.
About the book
Poirot’s Christmas is cut short when the superintendent of Colonel Johnson, with whom he is spending Christmas, announces the murder of the grumpy Simeon Lee. In fact, the man is found by his children locked in his room with his throat cut.
Promoted on both sides of the Atlantic as Agatha Christie's 50th book and published in 1950 by William Collins, A Murder is Announced is a staple of crime fiction and is often considered the best of all the Miss Marple novels. The villagers of Chipping Cleghorn, including Jane Marple, are agog with curiosity over an advertisement in the local gazette which reads: ‘A murder is announced and will take place on Friday October 29th, at Little Paddocks at 6.30 p.m.’ A childish practical joke? Or a hoax intended to scare poor Letitia Blacklock? Unable to resist the mysterious invitation, a crowd begins to gather at Little Paddocks at the appointed time when, without warning, the lights go out…
About the book
A death announcement is posted in the local Chipping Cleghorn newspaper. A murder is announced and will take place on Friday October 29th, at Little Paddocks at 6.30 p.m.. Friends are requested to take note of this warning which will never be repeated. Everyone in town feels compelled to go to Miss Blacklock’s house to really see if this crime will happen, and indeed someone dies. Murder or misfortune? After the incident, the commissioner tries to understand what really happened and gets help from a rather particular woman, first a guest in a hotel in the area and then by the wife of the parish priest of the town (they were also present that evening). Obviously this little woman is Miss Marple who happens to be able to be useful despite her ailments.
All my book reviews are and will be 100% honest. I don’t get paid to write them and I don’t get “gifts” to write a good review so what I write is what I think. If I love a book, I’m going to say that, if I don’t like a book, I will write why I don’t. My critics aren’t an attack to the author, they are just how I feel about a subject or a style. See more in my Review Policy.