Book 11 of 52: "The ABC Murders" by Agatha Christie

Going back to fiction again!  I’m continuing in my quest to read all of Agatha Christie’s consistently amazing mystery books.

Normally, a mystery book doesn’t reveal the killer right away.  If so, he’s well hidden, and often the last person to be suspected.  We almost certainly don’t get a chapter from his narrative, telling us his full name and what he’s up to.

But there’s a reason why Agatha Christie’s books are anything but normal…
In only the second or third chapter of “The ABC Murders,” we get a short little blurb from a man by the name of Alexander Bonaparte Cust, detailing how he’s considering a new method for selecting a victim.  By gods, we’ve got our murderer!  No need for a detective after all!

But of course, for Christie, nothing’s as simple as it seems at first, and as she leads our mustachioed hero Poirot deeper into this mystery.  As Poirot himself mentions, this is one of his first cases where there’s a murdering spree, and not just a single murder in a cozy group of clear suspects.  How does he hunt down a killer, when it could be anyone in the country?

But of course, it turns out that there are suspects, and we also get a nice glimpse into the operating methods of the police as they investigate, both with and without Poirot’s help.

And once again, at the end, I couldn’t guess the killer.  Damn.  One of these days, I’ll manage it, Christie!

Time to read: 3 hours.  Typical for fiction.

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