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After the Funeral by Agatha Christie
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's review
Aug 19, 2012

really liked it

By Agatha Christie. Grade: A. #11 of Hercule Poirot Series.
I’m trying to read all the books written by Ms Christie and I’m first finishing off all the Hercule Poirot books. After The Funeral is the 11th Poirot book that I recently finished reading.
When Cora is savagely murdered with a hatchet, the extraordinary remark she made the previous day at her brother Richard’s funeral, suddenly takes on a chilling significance. At the reading of Richard’s will, Cora was clearly heard to say : It’s been hushed up very nicely, hasn’t it…But he was murdered , wasn’t he? In desperation, the family solicitor turns to Hercule Poirot to unravel the mystery…
Unlike the detective books of other authors that I’ve read, Ms Christie’s each and every novel has a completely unique story format. After the Funeral initially explains the Abernethie family tree, then the ancestral home of the Abernethie and then the guests (living relatives of Richard Abernthie) attending his funeral. As mentioned in the blurb above, Cora Lansquenet’s, the youngest sister of the deceased, remark and then her subsequent horrible murder, actually begins the mystery of the novel.
Cora is known for her nature of speaking unwanted truth in unpleasant situations and this is the reason why the other relatives and the solicitor, Mr. Entwhistle begin to wonder if Cora’s words were true. Mr. Entwhistle decides to find out the murderer and does a lot of research on his own. But soon, the mystery gets more and more entangled in different versions of stories of each person present during the funeral. So, to get some help, he goes to seek the advice of his old friend Hercule Poirot, who not only solves the murder of Cora but also that of Richard, using his “little grey cells”. But the most important thing in this book is the fact that until the very end, you can not guess who the killer is! Personally, I suspected almost everyone of the suspects of the murder and at the end it turned out that the murderer was someone I hadn’t suspected even once. It was a dramatic end of this book which kept me on the edge of my seat throughout.
But there were a couple of flaws here and there. The book had quite a few number of characters involved in the plot and each of them was equally important. Also each character was described in great detail but due to the large number of characters, as the story progressed, it was very difficult to keep up with all the traits of these characters at once and sometimes I had to keep turning to the previous pages to recollect what had been written about a particular person. That usually broke the link of reading and irritated me a lot. Also, the actual climax begins only when you’re halfway through the novel and by that time the reader may even get bored to leave the book half-way!
But apart from all these tiny flaws the book is a beautiful masterpiece from the queen of crime, Ms Christie and it’s a wonderful treat to all the mystery/detective stories fans!

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