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moonlightreader

Moonlight Reader

Lawyer, mother, avid reader. Game host extraordinaire! Partner in crime to Obsidian Black Plague! My bookish weaknesses include classics, fantasy, YA, and agreeing to read more books than is even remotely possible.

Currently reading

The Dower House Mystery
Patricia Wentworth
Progress: 42 %
Capital Crimes: London Mysteries: A British Library Crime Classic (British Library Crime Classics)
Martin Edwards
Progress: 105/410 pages
Sherlock Holmes: The Definitive Collection
Arthur Conan Doyle, Stephen Fry

The Worst Poirot I've Read

The Big Four  - Agatha Christie

Grumpy reader is grumpy.

 

Previously, I noted that I was in the process of rereading the Poirot canon. If they all sucked like this book sucked, I'd throw in the towel. Fortunately, The Big Four is a rare clunker by an author who usually provides a good read.

 

I can't even explain this book. It initially felt like a series of short stories, loosely chained together with an overarching narrative arc that involved four super villains. There was way too much:

 

Muahahaha...

 

And not nearly enough story. And then, the whole thing just jumped the fucking shark. There was a Chinaman. There were twins, yes, twins, no, seriously, twins.

 

Hello there, massive violations of the Ten Commandments of Golden Age Mysteries (which, for those who don't know them are 

 

  1. The criminal must be mentioned in the early part of the story, but must not be anyone whose thoughts the reader has been allowed to know.
  2. All supernatural or preternatural agencies are ruled out as a matter of course.
  3. Not more than one secret room or passage is allowable.
  4. No hitherto undiscovered poisons may be used, nor any appliance which will need a long scientific explanation at the end.
  5. No Chinaman must figure in the story.
  6. No accident must ever help the detective, nor must he ever have an unaccountable intuition which proves to be right.
  7. The detective himself must not commit the crime.
  8. The detective is bound to declare any clues which he may discover.
  9. The "sidekick" of the detective, the Watson, must not conceal from the reader any thoughts which pass through his mind: his intelligence must be slightly, but very slightly, below that of the average reader.
  10. Twin brothers, and doubles generally, must not appear unless we have been duly prepared for them.

 

She did manage to wrap up the ending in a reasonably satisfactory fashion. But still, this was the worst Poirot I've ever read. Ever. Read. 

 

Note: I hereby nominate Mike Meyer's left eyebrow for an academy award.