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Five Little Pigs (Hercule Poirot #24)

3.91 of 5 stars 3.91  ·  rating details  ·  15,173 ratings  ·  662 reviews
It was an open and shut case. All the evidence said Caroline Crale poisoned her philandering husband, a brilliant painter. She was quickly and easily convicted and sentenced to life in prison.
Now, sixteen years later, in a posthumous letter, Mrs. Crale has assured her grown daughter that she was innocent. But instead of setting the young woman's mind at ease, the letter
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Hardcover, 240 pages
Published September 17th 2007 by Black Dog & Leventhal Publishers (first published October 1st 1942)
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The Murder of Roger Ackroyd by Agatha ChristieMurder on the Orient Express by Agatha ChristieThe Mysterious Affair at Styles by Agatha ChristiePeril at End House by Agatha ChristieDeath on the Nile by Agatha Christie
Poirot
7th out of 38 books — 18 voters


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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Cathy DuPont
My first Agatha Christie and for some reason it was what I expected. Not a thrilling ride, not a boring ride, just a nice, pleasant ride of a read. (Ride both literally and figuratively since it was an audio I listened to in the car.)

The mystery was 15 years old, about a rash 20 year old who falls in love with an old married coot of 40 years old. He is poisoned, dies and his wife is charged and convicted of his murder. She dies in prison a year later.

She left her daughter (who was five years ol
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Laurel Young
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Cindy
Feb 12, 2008 Cindy rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: mystery lovers
Shelves: mysteries
In this story, Poirot gets a chance to do something he's never done before - to solve a mystery without a single clue, simply by talking to the people who were involved.

Sixteen years ago, artist Amyas Crale was poisoned. His wife was arrested and convicted of murder. She wrote a letter to her young daughter saying she was innocent. Now the girl is grown and engaged to be married. But first she wants to know what really happened.

Poirot has little work with. He starts by talking to the lawyers on
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Hajarath Prasad Abburu
The ending is just exhilarating and was as smashing as Iron Man soaring into a Malibu Point Sky.

Mr. Poirot, my heart is still with Sherlock but you are as brilliant as Him!! What a reasoning! I bow to thee
maricar
A bit sad to read through. It’s as if the luster from Poirot’s ‘glamour’ as a detective has lost its strength.

The premise is a promising one, don’t get me wrong: can one resolve a murder that has been resolutely concluded 16 years ago and, for all intents and purposes, left (almost) everyone with no doubt as to the identity of the killer? Poirot hardly thought twice and set off to show the readers just that.

Murder in retrospect, indeed.

In a way, Christie does prove that all one need is the fun
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Chris
I hate the Yankees. I think that it is required if you are a true baseball fan and you live in a baseball town outside the State of New York that you hate the Yankees. You don't even have to be living in Boston. It is pretty much universal. There are exceptions made for transplants, relatives of players, casual fans, etc., but basically it holds true.

But I have to admit that I like Mariano Rivera.

You have to like him because he is the best ever at what he does and he doesn't make a big fuss abo
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Carol
After a few stressful weeks, I needed another light mystery to smoke through! Reading an Agatha Christie is like eating a small butter/pecan tart or small ice-cream cone. You enjoy the rich flavour and you swallow the entire thing quickly in one bite.

In “Five Little Pigs,” Christie does a great job at providing contrasting characters. It’s a retrospective crime mystery ( with 16 year-old clues), and the true identity of the killer can only be discovered through interviews and journals. This pro
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F.R.
The reason ‘Five Little Pigs’ is one of the least well known Agatha Christie novels is that it’s such thin and uninspiring stuff. Hercule Poirot is asked to investigate a mariticide of sixteen years earlier by the couple’s now grown up daughter, the wife having escaped the hangman and died in prison. Those who’ve read their Ross MacDonald will know that this is the kind of thing that can excite the characters’ guilt and passions, and suddenly the danger which existed at the time of the original ...more
Susan
This is the 24th novel featuring Hercule Poirot; preceded by the classic “Evil Under the Sun,” followed by the magnificent “The Hollow” and published in 1942. Even a mere mention of the Poirot titles written around that time show us that Christie – always my favourite author of all time – was on a real roll. Five Little Pigs is not one of her best known Poirot mysteries, which is a shame, as this is a wonderful read.

Carla Lemarchant was only five when her mother, Caroline Crale, was found guilty
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Rick Toews
Not bad. Ending was mildly gratifying. No clever or amusing turns of phrase to tickle the mind; still, because I wanted to get to the end and see how the mystery was resolved, I resented having to put the book down.

The Poirot character is portrayed as taking a psychological approach in his investigations. This appeals to me. I believe that, in general, people behave consistently with their characters and that if a thing is observed to be very much out of character, one is justified in looking fo
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Anna Matsuyama
3.5

This little piggy went to market,
This little piggy stayed home,
This little piggy had roast beef,
This little piggy had none,
And this little piggy cried wee wee wee all the way home.

English nursery rhyme
Iniya
Perfect read to start the year.. :-) :-)
Lynn
Today’s post is on “Five Little Pigs” by Agatha Christie also called Murder in Retrospect. It is the 24th Hercule Poirot novel, it is 240 pages long, and is published by Black Dog & Leventhal Publishers. The cover has a hand with a paint brush in it and fades into a bright orange. The intended reader is someone who loves mysteries but this, like all Christie novels, is so well written that anyone who reads it will have a good time. There is no language, nothing illicit in this but there is t ...more
Brenda Mengeling
Somehow, when I was a teenager and devouring all the Hercule Poirot mysteries, I missed reading Five Little Pigs. I am so glad I found it! Murder in Retrospect is an alternate title.

An elderly Poirot is asked by a young woman to look into the murder of her father 16 years earlier, for which her mother was convicted and then died after a year in prison. The last thing the mother wrote to her daughter, to be opened when her daughter came of age, was that she was innocent. The daughter believes th
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Robin
3.5 Stars. Not one of my favorite Christie mysteries starring Hercule Poirot, but still really good.

(Note: I gather that some editions were published with the title "Five Little Pigs", but my copy is "Murder in Retrospect", which I think more accurately describes the story.)

Poirot is intrigued to investigate a murder which occurred 16 years previously. Carla Lamarchant knows her mother did not kill her father, though she was tried and convicted of the crime. So who did? Poirot convinces the othe
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Eric Townsend
Agatha Christie does it again. Every time I read one of her books and think I know “who done it” I’m always wrong, without fail. She throws so many twists and turns along the way, and just when you think that without a doubt it must be person X, she reveals the truth and you look silly. I imagine Christie got a kick out of that.

Murder in Retrospect, like all of Christie’s books, takes me back to a time when things were written so much differently. The dialogue is handled in a way you just don’t
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Kasia S.
I'm an avid reader of Christie but I haven't heard of this book until I ran across the title in a few favorable reviews, Five Little Pigs ( primarily published under Dodd in the 40's under the name of " Murder in Retrospect") came up a lot so I had to try it and listened to the reviewers and they were right... This is was fun and engaging and piqued my interest throughout the whole sleuthing process, once I was done with it I had to read one more to keep me on that Christie high~ ha-ha...(my sec ...more
Michelle
Caroline Crale and Amyas Crale....I wept for you both. They are now my favorite Christie's couple. And this story, is my new favorite AC's mystery.

The murderer is exactly the person whom I thought it was. In fact, the hints were heavily dropped throughout the story and they were easy to identify. At first, it seemed confusing and impossible for any of the five suspects to execute the murder and that the murderess was, in fact, Caroline. But as we read on and picking up the little clues, not to m
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Bhavya Mathur
Agatha Christie is so good, she is cruel. I had just read Evil Under the Sun(which I did not like much) and I thought I have read too much of her and can almost figure out the mystery myself. With this book, the author mocked me, laughed at me and showed me just why I love her.
This is an unusual mystery where a murder happened 16 years ago and Poirot is approached because the victim's daughter wants the truth. After reading 80% of the book, I thought I know who dunnit. Agatha Christie made me b
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Gina Rheault
My first Agatha Christie book - very enjoyable, in its old-fashioned stock murder, interrogation of the suspects, gathering and solution formulaic way. I felt like a spectator watching a 1940's black & white movie -- time travel on top of mere escape. Hercule Poirot is a riot with his tongue in cheek evaluations of the potential suspects. The story rolls along with the voices of the chosen suspects as the details accumulate, and you are saying to yourself, "I've got it. I've got it." long be ...more
Betty Zhuang
It's funny that the first book I happen to give 5/5 stars for is, by all intents and purposes, a simple mystery – if, of course, you can refer to a mystery as simple. It is not a deep book. It will not thrill you with brilliant insights of human nature.

But it will satisfy you, and by god am I lacking in reading satisfaction lately.

It is a crisp work, tight, sparing in detail. The characters, if not complex, feel real enough for your suspension of disbelief. The mystery is well woven and well w
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Scott
I'm a huge Agatha Christie fan so it kills me to give her a 2 star rating but this book just did not do it for me. I'm a big fan of author's trying different things but the way this book was written just bored me to death.

A 16 year old murder. Enter Poirot to determine if the person that was convicted was actually the person who did it.
He talks to 5 different people separately.
Then he has them write up their accounts and we read about the accounts separately.
Then he comes to his conclusions.

No c
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viviana
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Katharine
I listened to an audio version of this book and it was my first Agatha Christie.

I was dazzled by the intense characterization -- this kept me fascinated. I also thought that it was quite daring, as a writer, have the structure of the book almost completely in dialogue between the interviewees and Poirot. I had my guess all along as to who the murderer was, and I was wrong. Still not convinced the author's ending was better.

I really enjoyed this and I think it's prompted me to listen to all of
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Patricia Rodrigues
Já se começa a tornar um hábito pegar num livro de Agatha Christie quando quero ter uma leitura que sei que me vai agradar, pena é que os meus livros por ler desta colecção já começam a ser poucos (Gostava bastante de ter esta colecção completa mas são tantos e o t€mpo não abunda).
Gosto particularmente dos livros de Agatha Christie pois temos uma história bem construída, com cenários de crime, suspense, pistas para tentarmos descodificar o mistério e a própria solução, isto tudo em livros relati
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An Odd1
15 years ago, accused Caroline Crale died in prison one year after being convicted of poisoning her famous artist husband Amyas, a philanderer "egoist" p27 obsessed with his paintings over all else. Learning the truth in Canada at 21, daughter Caroline (Carla or Caro) returns to England, begs Poirot to prove Caroline's note declaring innocence. Crales's cautious friend and neighbor Meredith Blake, herbal concoction hobbyist, missed his hemlock potion, remains found in victim's beer glass, but no ...more
Harshita
Absolutely spiffingly marvelous!

I had started to get restless on my Poirot Marathon. The characters seemed uni-dimensional, plot points were getting repeated and I could almost guess the murderer. I started wondering whether reading all these books in a go was a bad idea after all. Then I started reading this book and realized that Agatha Christie had reached her golden age of mystery writing. Awesome!

So we have a young girl Carla Crale, a young girl engaged to be married soon who hires Hercule
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Mia Campion
This is definitely my favorite Hercule Poirot story. Forget all other great pieces, like 'Murder on the Orient Express', 'The Murder of Roger Ackroyd' or 'Lord Edgware Dies', this story that tells about characters dressed in light summer clothes, that spend their time close to a lake and enjoy leisure activities has such a dark side to it. You can just picture the whole scenery: the house, the lake, the painting, the beer, the hats and it makes you think of warm weather and relaxation. But someh ...more
Rubal
More like 3.5

I made a status update halfway through the book remarking that I knew who murdered Amyas and how.
I was so confident that I had cracked the “Agatha Christie” modus operandi .I even consciously picked up bits and pieces from the book to support my theory.
But I don’t feel any shame in admitting that the magic of the ‘Queen of crime’ is still successful. I was wide off the mark, exactly where Agatha wanted her readers, right in her trap. For this reason, the book went from 3 to 3.5.

Amya
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Kristian
To be honest, I do not really have an idea of who the real murderer is not until the great detective Poriot told me so. I want to spoil now because what I shall tel won't really have no bearing at all. I did not really have any idea of how one of the persons could have killed Amyas. It's just that I really thought that Amyas there is secret behind his last painting. I really thought that there is some code behind the colors. I was quite wrong and quite right. That is the only thing I can spoil.

A
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Agatha Christie L...: January 2014 - Five Little Pigs aka Murder in Retrospect 30 100 Feb 04, 2014 10:43PM  
  • Have His Carcase  (Lord Peter Wimsey Mysteries, #8)
  • Died in the Wool (Roderick Alleyn, #13)
  • The Final Deduction (Nero Wolfe, #35)
  • The Unfinished Clue
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Agatha Christie also wrote romance novels under the pseudonym Mary Westmacott, and was occasionally published under the name Agatha Christie Mallowan.

Agatha Mary Clarissa Miller was born in Torquay, Devon, England, U.K., as the youngest of three. The Millers had two other children: Margaret Frary Miller (1879–1950), called Madge, who was eleven years Agatha's senior, and Louis Montant Miller (1880
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More about Agatha Christie...

Other Books in the Series

Hercule Poirot (1 - 10 of 42 books)
  • The Mysterious Affair at Styles (Hercule Poirot #1)
  • The Murder on the Links (Hercule Poirot #2)
  • Poirot Investigates (Hercule Poirot, #3)
  • The Murder of Roger Ackroyd (Hercule Poirot, #4)
  • The Big Four (Hercule Poirot, #5)
  • The Mystery of the Blue Train (Hercule Poirot, #6)
  • Black Coffee (Hercule Poirot, #7)
  • Peril at End House (Hercule Poirot, #8)
  • Lord Edgware Dies (Hercule Poirot, #9)
  • Murder on the Orient Express (Hercule Poirot, #10)
And Then There Were None Murder on the Orient Express (Hercule Poirot, #10) The Mysterious Affair at Styles (Hercule Poirot #1) Murder at the Vicarage (Miss Marple, #1) The Murder of Roger Ackroyd (Hercule Poirot, #4)

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“Poirot said placidly, “One does not, you know, employ merely the muscles. I do not need to bend and measure the footprints and pick up the cigarette ends and examine the bent blades of grass. It is enough for me to sit back in my chair and think. It is this – ” he tapped his egg-shaped head – “this, that functions!” 21 likes
“Juliet singles out Romeo. Desdemona claims Othello. They have no doubts, the young, no fear, no pride.” 4 likes
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