Felicia J.'s Reviews > The Mysterious Affair at Styles

The Mysterious Affair at Styles by Agatha Christie
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Aug 02, 14

bookshelves: mystery, golden-age-detective-fiction
Read in April, 2012, read count: 1

3.5 stars

This was a fun, page-turning little mystery, tightly plotted and filled with more jaw-dropping twists than many whodunits twice its length. Agatha Christie's first novel introduces her famous detective Hercule Poirot, he of the little black mustache and meticulous habits, who misses no clue and whose analytical brain races several steps ahead of everyone else (particularly his befuddled friend Hastings, who fancies himself a clever person, but is flummoxed by Poirot time and time again).

Christie's deft handling of the plot left my head pleasantly spinning. Much of the fun of reading Christie comes from trying to spot all the important facts and keep up with Poirot's deductions. I had a couple of good hunches, but I'll admit, I did not guess the murderer's identity or anticipate the final twist.

Dame Agatha must have had to sketch timelines of her novels in order to insert all the little clues in the right places and not to miss any during the dénouement. In this first outing, I caught a few clues that were left unexplained and thought Christie's ambition might have outpaced her storytelling skills. However, my imagination filled in the gaps, and the omissions did not detract from my overall enjoyment of the novel.

All in all, an enjoyable romp to spend the weekend with.
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