Crooked House by Agatha Christie
Published by Harper Paperbacks
This post could alternately be titled: Why I Need to Take a Break from Agatha Christie
From the publisher:
The Leonides are one big happy family living in a sprawling, ramshackle mansion. That is until the head of the household, Aristide, is murdered with a fatal barbiturate injection.
Suspicion naturally falls on the old man’s young widow, fifty years his junior. But the murderer has reckoned without the tenacity of Charles Hayward, fiance of the late millionaire’s granddaughter.
Like most of my favorite Agatha Christie mysteries, this is one of the standalones, without either Poirot or Miss Marple to come in and discover the culprit. Crooked House is told from the perspective of Charles Hayward, whose father works for Scotland Yard, and who is determined to solve the mystery of Aristide’s death, because his fiance, Sophie Leonides, will not marry him until she is assured that her name, and that of her family, is cleared.
I actually thought this was a very enjoyable mystery from Christie, but the problem is that I solved it within a sentence of being introduced to the killer. Literally. That is not exaggeration. I don’t think this is actually a fault of the book, but of the fact that this was my 3rd Christie in as many weeks, and probably my 5th (at least) over 2 months. As much as I enjoy her, it is time for a break. It just isn’t the same when I don’t spend the entire book trying to match wits with her.
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