BOOK REVIEW: MURDER IN THREE ACTS, A NOVEL BY AGATHA CHRISTIE
Today I'm back with a book review: Murder in Three Acts (or Three Act Tragedy), a novel by Agatha Christie. This novel was originally published under the title Three Act Tragedy in 1935 but since it was adapted for television (in 1986) as Murder in Three Acts., it has also been printed under that alternative title. If murder mystery is your genre, you simply cannot go wrong with Agatha Christie. When I was in middle school, Agatha Christie was a popular choice among us kids. However, I realized that I enjoy her writing just as much as an adult. Among Agatha Christie's works, my favourite books are those with the legendary Belgian detective Poirot. Earlier this year I reviewed Hercule Poiroit's Christmas. Today I will review this 1935 novel. Funny to think it's almost 100 years since it has been published! I will also share two summer outfits with you, both featuring skirts from designer Stanka Zovko paired with ruffled floral blouses and heeled sandals. I quite like this outfit formula.
MURDER IN THREE ACTS (ALSO PUBLISHED AS THREE ACT TRAGEDY), A NOVEL BY AGATHA CHRISTIE 3.4/ 5
...“Mr. Satterthwaite looked cheered. Suddenly an idea struck him. His jaw fell.
"My goodness," he cried, "I've only just realized it! That rascal, with his poisoned cocktail! Anyone might have drunk it! It might have been me!"
"There is an even more terrible possibility that you have not considered," said Poirot.
"It might have been me," said Hercule Poirot.”
I wrote of lack of 'page time' (you know like screen time but on pages) for Poirot, but what of the story itself? The murder mystery part is written very well. In this sense, Agatha Christie cannot do wrong. Many a modern crime writer could take lessons from her. Her plots are intelligent and well thought through. Her characters are well rounded and three dimensional. Her prose at times is wonderfully philosophical.
...“Events come to people, not people to events. Why do some people have exciting lives and other people dull ones? Because of their surroundings? Not at all. One man may travel to the ends of the earth and nothing will happen to him. There will be a massacre a week before he arrives, and an earthquake the day after he leaves, and the boat that he nearly took will be shipwrecked. And another man may live at Balham and travel to the City every day, and things will happen to him. He will be mixed up with blackmailing gangs and beautiful girls and motor bandits. There are people with a tendency to shipwrecks--even if they go on a boat on an ornamental lake, something will happen to it.”
Renowned stage actor Sir Charles Cartwright hosts a dinner party at his home in Cornwall. His guests include: Hercule Poirot; psychiatric doctor Sir Bartholomew Strange; Hermione "Egg" Lytton Gore and her mother; Captain Dacres and his wife Cynthia; the playwright Muriel Wills; Egg's friend Oliver Manders; Mr Satterthwaite; and Reverend Babbington and his wife. When Babbington suddenly dies after sipping one of the cocktails being served, Cartwright believes it was murder, though Strange finds no poison in his glass. Some time later, Poirot is in Monte Carlo and hears news from Satterthwaite and Cartwright that Strange died from nicotine poisoning after drinking a glass of port wine, despite there being no trace in the glass. With the exception of the three men, Strange's guests are the same ones who attended Cartwright's party. Both Satterthwaite and Cartwright return to England to investigate the murders.