Saturday, November 17, 2012

Murder on the Orient Express by Agatha Christie

Book Review: Murder on the Orient Express by Agatha Christie

Things to know up front...

Recommended to: Anyone that loves suspense or mystery, Anyone that wants a quick read, Newcomers to Christie, and/or ANYONE AT ALL. 

Rating: 10/10

  • Well, it's about murder, and if that's something you would wish to prevent younger readers from gaining access to, then I understand. However, it needs to be said that this is not a novel that goes into graphic detail; we don't get a sickening description of the body, or anything like that. Everything of that nature is mentioned in more of a matter-of-fact manner rather than an emotional one. 
  • There isn't much bad language besides the rare and passionate "damn" and there is not a single element of a sexual nature. 
  • It's not an especially difficult read, though it can be a little confusing at parts, since it is in fact a Mystery. There are also many quick phrases slipped in that are in French. It probably depends on the version you got, but mine did not translate, though that was hardly a big deal, since understanding them is not synonymous with understanding the novel as a whole. 
  • Overall, it's a quality read that I'd say is good for anyone ranging from teen-age to adult, and I'm sure that there are many preteens that could handle it as well.
As Hercule Poirot is making the jump from one case to another, he is caught on The Orient Express, on which he is present when a dead body turns up in one of the compartments. He, along with two companions (who, as far as I can tell, were there to emphasize what a genius Poirot is), must looks past the too-tidy alibis and unbelievably odd details to eventually puzzle out who the culprit is.

The Positives: 

-The invaluable element that is true mystery. Christie succeeds in an area in which many mystery novelists don't: you truly aren't sure how the events transpired until the end. At the same time, I don't doubt that people (who are obviously much more clever than I am) could put together the gist of the truth. However, if you are like me, you will stay absolutely baffled until the very last pages when all is revealed (which I enjoy much more). And oh buddy, when it finally is revealed, you're gonna freak. It's bonkers. 

-The characters. Oh, what a colorful bunch they are. Even better, they are even more colorful behind their lies. I can't go into too much detail about them because there is just too much potential to give the whole plot away. 

-Hercule Poirot. Okay, okay, I know he's technically a character, too, but he's just way too awesome to not earn his own positive! He appeared in the other Agatha Christie novel that I've read, The Clocks, but he plays a much bigger part in this story, and I am so glad for that. What a brilliant, brilliant character! Not only is he a genius, but he's a genius that doesn't mind everyone knowing it. I consider those to be the very best kind (at least in fictional stories)! 

-The ending. Yes, this is referring to more than just the final reveal. I wish I could say more about it, but alas, I cannot! 

The Negatives:

There are none! For awhile, I thought there was a minor flaw, or rather, a minor personal bother, but then it came to be in the end that it all played into the plot. So, in other words, I hate to sound like a broken record...but I can't tell you anymore about it. It's killing me.


So there you go; it was spectacular! I highly recommend it to everyone, and furthermore, I'm going to start highly recommending Agatha Christie to everyone! So go ahead, pick this one up, or any other by Christie, and I'm sure you'll enjoy!

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