Monday, August 29, 2016

Classic Book Review: And Then There Were None

And Then There Were None by Agatha Christie, September 12, 2013 (originally published November 6, 1939). 256 pages. Published by HarperCollins. Source: Own (not this edition though.)
Ten strangers, apparently with little in common, are lured to an island mansion off the coast of Devon by the mysterious U.N.Owen. Over dinner, a record begins to play, and the voice of an unseen host accuses each person of hiding a guilty secret. That evening, former reckless driver Tony Marston is found murdered by a deadly dose of cyanide.

The tension escalates as the survivors realize the killer is not only among them but is preparing to strike again… and again…
First Sentence:
In the corner of a first-class smoking carriage, Mr. Justice Wargrave, lately retired from the bench, puffed at a cigar and ran an interested eye through the political news in the Times.

One morning, I woke up with the intense desire to read, or in this case reread, one of my Agatha Christie mysteries. I just could not settle in to reading anything else, my mind was just screaming for a chance to fall into writing of one of my favorite mystery writers. As it had been some time since I last read one of her books I decided to indulge that whim.

  • And Then There Were None, that title does a very accurate job of summing up the book in a nutshell. What it doesn't tell you is that the mystery is dark and more layered than it first appears. I've always been impressed with how thorough Agatha Christie was when she set up the mystery surrounding the invitations and removal of those on the island. Even though I had already read it, at least twice before, I was still on the edge of my seat as the story of each of the ten was brought to light and as they met their demise. That's impressive when you can still get me caught up in a mystery when I already know how it ends.
  • For me, I've always enjoyed seeing how she brings about the answer to the mysteries she wrote. It always, and I mean always, made a huge impression on me with the how detailed the entire plot was from beginning to end. Her books are probably why I love mysteries as much as I do...and also why it's hard to dupe me with plot twists. 
  • There are definitely aspects of this book that are beyond creepy. Case in point, the gathering of the ten and how the murderer selected them to "help" with their masterpiece of murder. While some of it was just chance, it is chilling to think how easily each of them feel for the ruse; that and how each of their deaths, for the most part, played into the crime they committed. Personally, this is one that I love to read on dark, stormy nights as it really adds to the atmosphere while reading.
Final Verdict: And Then There Were None- Chilling and mysterious! Out of all of Agatha Christie's novels, that I've read, this one has the best atmosphere of when it comes to creepiness. 

And Then There Were None earns

A copy of this book was purchased by me, for my reading pleasure. All thoughts are my own.

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