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Five Little Pigs

(Hercule Poirot #25)

really liked it 4.00  ·  Rating details ·  39,569 ratings  ·  2,443 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
Paperback, 224 pages
Published December 15th 1985 by Berkley (first published May 1942)
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Bruce In response to Emily's answer: I could not find this quotation -- could you specify more precisely where it is? Plus, why does Poirot mention it to An…moreIn response to Emily's answer: I could not find this quotation -- could you specify more precisely where it is? Plus, why does Poirot mention it to Angela right before the denouement? He never explains its significance. A tentative theory is that reading about an artist that abandons his family to visit Tahiti adds fuel to Angela's anger at Amyas. (less)
Kris If I understand correctly, you have an e-book or downloaded audiobook version of the book. Unfortunately, I don't think you'll get help opening the fi…moreIf I understand correctly, you have an e-book or downloaded audiobook version of the book. Unfortunately, I don't think you'll get help opening the file on goodreads. If you got the e-book from a vendor (, Barnes and Noble, etc.) you'll need to contact them (or the vendor or manufacturer of your device - Kindle, Nook, etc.) for help.
You might also check with your local library. I work at our library, and we have people on staff to help with these kinds of questions!(less)

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Jul 24, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: audible
Aggie! I was sure I had you figured out this time and you got me again.

I adore you as much as I resent you for humbling me EVERY DAMN TIME.
The best thing that can be said about this book is that you get a lot of Poirot. He is present in almost every page where there are no notes that had been written by the characters. We are privy to his thoughts.

Not only that, but the Poirot we see is almost human. He is normal, foreign, but normal. He isn't the eccentric walking bag of tics that a few generations of fans have grown to laugh at/deride. Despite that, I gave the book 3 stars.

Oh, the story is cleverly written. But we get the same mu
Review hopefully later 😬🐷😬

So, although I am sure I have said this before, “I really don’t remember this story at all, either reading it or watching the Suchet TV version”. How I really don’t know, but there it is.

This is quite a lot different to other Poirot novels, but maybe thats what I needed, to re-invigorate my Poirot challenge. This book focusses on a many years-old murder that Poirot is asked to investigate. The story is good, well crafted, the characters, well despicable in some cases bu
Dec 28, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review and other non-spoilery reviews can be found @The Book Prescription

“Ah, but my dear sir, the why must never be obvious. That is the whole point.”

It is no secret that I am a fan of Agatha! The idea of a lady writing mystery/ murder novels almost a decade ago and they are so smart and good is just mind-blowing! I was in the mood to read something by the queen of mystery in the second half of 2018 and I finally did this only days away from 2019.

I only picked this because I bought the bo
‘What are you going to do?’
‘I am going to visit these five people-and from each one I am going to get his or her own story.’
Superintendent Hale sighed with a deep melancholy.
He said: ‘Man, you’re nuts! None of their stories are going to agree! Don’t you grasp that elementary fact? No two people remember a thing in the same order anyway. And after all this time! Why, you’ll hear five accounts of five separate murders!’
‘That,’ said Poirot, ‘is what I am counting upon. It will be very instructive.’
Five Little Pigs is the 25th book in the Hercule Poirot series by Dame Agatha Christie. My friend Medhat reminded me that Christie's birthday was this month, so we agreed to read a few of her books together. I've probably finished at least 50% of her novels and usually read them out of order (a rarity for me). First up was Five Little Pigs, and it was quite a fun story. Let's dive into my review.

Caroline Crale went to prison for killing her husband. The jury felt sorry for her and rather than se
Dannii Elle
Deceived again! Well played, Christie. Well played.
Jan 26, 2020 rated it really liked it
A young woman came to Poirot skillfully playing on his vanity. She said she needed the best detective, and how Poirot was to admit he was not? As a result he got stuck with her assignment. Sixteen years ago when his client were a little girl her father was poisoned while he was painting a picture of a beautiful woman with whom he was madly in love and ready to abandon his wife, the girl's mother.
All the clues and motives pointed to the later; she was arrested, convicted, and died while imprison
Erin *Proud Book Hoarder*
Also known as “Five Little Pigs”

One of the best Christie's I've read, sorry to see it's not mentioned more. Christie changed it up a bit by having Poirot having to take apart a crime that happened decades ago. Digging into the past and focusing on interviews instead of actual occurrence and eye witness details. A lot has been forgotten in the small details, and some of it has been skewed by memory and deceit. Like some of her other novels, the bulk of this one is interviews. In between that is t
David Schaafsma
Apr 24, 2017 rated it really liked it
Originally titled Murder in Retrospect (ugh!), Five Little Pigs is one of several books where Christie used nursery rhymes for titles/concepts, such as Ten Little Indians and Then There Were None. In this one, Carla Lemarchant comes to Poirot with a letter her mother had written to her when she died, but had only recently come into her possession. Her mother, Caroline Crale, was 16 years ago convicted of the murder of her husband, accomplished artist Amyas Crale, and she died in prison a couple ...more
Iryna *Book and Sword*
Nov 05, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: agatha-christie
4.5/5 stars (rounded up)

I am genuinely surprised that this novel of Christie's is not talked about more. This is one of my personal favorites and this time it was actually a re-read for me.

I've read Five Little Pigs for the first time about 7 years ago, and now that I have picked it up for the second time all I could remember was that I liked it a lot. I didn't remember who the murderer was, or how the book played out - so in a sense, my experience was like reading it for the first time.

“One do
Jul 07, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I thought, for once, I had figured out an Agatha whodunnit, and I was like, dang this one was predictable. But she steered me in wrong direction, presumably on purpose, and that is why she is the QUEEN.
Ahmad Sharabiani
Five Little Pigs = Murder in Retrospect (Hercule Poirot #25), Agatha Christie
Five Little Pigs is a work of detective fiction by British writer Agatha Christie. The UK first edition carries a copyright date of 1942. The book features Hercule Poirot. Five Little Pigs is unusual in the way that the same events are retold from the viewpoints of five people present on the day of the murder sixteen years earlier. Sixteen years after Caroline Crale is convicted for the murder of her husband Amyas, her
Medhat The Book Fanatic
4.5 stars rounded up to 5.

Started on the 129th birthday of Dame Agatha Christie, Five Little Pigs made up my 2nd Agatha Christie buddy-read in 2019 with my good friend James, with the first one being Sad Cyprus.

Due to a long-term slump, I didn't have a good beginning with the book. I thought it to be boring, with a repetitive writing.


The soon I got out of the slump, this book took me by surprise. It had a very interesting concept, and was a very different Agatha Christie
Oct 15, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I’d already seen the stage production of ‘Go Back For Murder’ which is an adaptation of this story minus Poirot, so I was already aware of the solution.

It meant that I could enjoy the Belgium detectives inclusion in the original story whilst also appreciating the structure of this novel.

The same events are recounted by the five people who were present that day of a murder sixteen years previous.
I loved how the clues were slowly scattered throughout the story, it’s slightly easier to spot them wh
Jun 21, 2020 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Poirot fans
Some Christies are very absorbing, but Five Little Pigs (alternate American title: "Murder in Retrospect") left an emotional gap that was never was quite bridged. Perhaps because this was the last book in her "prolific Poirot period" (try saying that three times fast) and she was stretching plotting boundaries, this feels more constructed, a more deliberate challenge to Poirot.

Poirot's famous 'little grey cells' are put to the test when a young woman comes to him begging him to solve the murder
Nandakishore Varma
A really terrific story. Carla Lemarchant gets a letter from her mother Caroline, who has died in prison while serving her sentence for murdering her husband, the philandering artist Amyas Crale- a letter professing her innocence. So young Carla has to go back in time to find the real murderer - and who to employ, other than Hercule Poirot?

There are five suspects (the five little pigs of the title) - Philip and Meredith Blake, Amyas's neighbours; Elsa Greer, the young girl Amyas is painting (and
Jun 22, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: murder mystery fans who like quieter, melancholy family tragedies of past years
Recommended to jade by: Shannon
Shelves: murder-mysteries
“what do most people mean when they say that? so young. something innocent, something appealing, something helpless. but youth is not that! youth is crude, youth is strong, youth is powerful — yes, and cruel! and one thing more — youth is vulnerable.”

sixteen years ago, caroline crale poisoned her temperamental husband amyas and was convicted of the crime. armed with a letter written by her mother and a wish to lay all doubts to rest, caroline’s daughter now wants to reopen the case a
Jason Koivu
Jul 06, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: crime, mystery
Another fun whodunnit!

This time around Hercule Poirot is tasked with digging up a 16 year old murder cold case. Everyone is satisfied with the previous resolution, except for one person. And that person asks Poirot to look into it. Of course, once he gets those little grey cells working, he finds something amiss.

In play form, this quicky still manages a modicum of depth within the story and characters, not a trait mysteries are always well-known for! And the plot is just as slippery as many of
Mar 22, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Damn it! I thought I had it resolved! The more vicious the characters, the better the novel. Nothing like the classic everyone could've done it or none did it to feel the Christie style, and Five little pigs has the best Christie vibes. Lots of Poirot, long conversations, ambiguous characters, perfect ending! And once again, we may be smart readers but not as much as Agatha as an author.

A story Christie adapted for the stage.

"La verdad…tiene la costumbre de darse a conocer s
Aug 11, 2009 rated it it was amazing
One of the best Poirot mysteries ever. Listening to this BBC adaptation was sheer joy, and I never knew how my jogging time flew past with Poirot and co. for company. Carla hires Poirot as she believes her mother, who was imprisoned for her father's death by poisoning, and who subsequently died in prison, is innocent, and wants him to prove so. Pour it agrees, provided that he will not tamper with the truth, if the truth is that Caroline, the mother is the actual murderer.
Here enter the five lit
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
Natalie Richards
Apr 27, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: owned-book
Up until the last two pages I was right! I was the master mystery solver! Then..... Agatha, you did it again and completely outfoxed me! Great story 😉
Aug 13, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A woman brings Poirot an old case with a conviction, saying she wants him to investigate, using flattery but also piquing his interest. She’s convinced that the convicted murderer, her mother, is innocent of her father’s murder, based on a letter from her mother, assuring her daughter of her innocence.
Poirot, naturally, uses his psychological approach, flattering the players in the old drama, playing up his foreignness when necessary to get the Brits to feel superior and magnanimously go through
Aug 12, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is such a haunting tale. A girl comes to age, ready to marry, only to find her her mother killed her father. She goes to Poirot and wants her mothers name cleared. 16 years letters Poirot solves this murder case after reading 5 accounts of what happened on the day of the murder, and then asking one question each. It’s truly a remarkable story!
May 21, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
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
"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"

Another nursery rhyme themed Agatha Christie book. While not one of her best (IMHO) it was still enjoyable. There is the usual formula ... a murder and a small group of suspects. What makes this story different is that the murder took place sixteen years ago.

Carla Lemarchant has come to Hercule Poirot to ask for his
This is one cleverly written murder-mystery by Agatha Christie. The story is quite different from other installments of the series, whereby Poirot is called to look into a murder conviction that took place over sixteen years ago. A letter that was written by the convicted lady to her daughter declares her innocence, and the daughter is determined that Poirot looks into the issue and uncover the truth.

How is Poirot to perform this miracle? The facts were sixteen years old. Only the five eyewitne
Aug 01, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

“Ah, but my dear sir, the why must never be obvious. That is the whole point.”

Another murder mystery in the past that Poirot has to entangle. And off goes our famous, moustachioed, Belgian detective, exercising his grey little cells and visiting people that were present during the events pertaining to the murder of Amyas Crale. We end up getting several versions of the same scenes, each just a little different. This may not be to everyone’s taste but I loved it, trying to do my own investiga
Apr 04, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Quite possibly the most underrated Poirot novel… though the very thing that makes it so excellent in my mind may be what puts off some readers. You see to a certain extent, it doesn’t matter who the killer is in this one.

Let me explain; a famous painter is poisoned and all evidence points to his wife Caroline. It seems to be a closed case… in fact it is closed, as Caroline was already found guilty. No, this isn’t a case where Poirot has to solve it and get an innocent woman off death row, becaus
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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 Christie is the best-selling author of all time. She wrote 66 crime novels and story collections, fourteen plays, and six novels under a pseudonym in Romance. Her books have sold over a billion copies in the English language and a billion in t

Other books in the series

Hercule Poirot (1 - 10 of 45 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: A Mystery Play in Three Acts (Hercule Poirot, #7)
  • Peril at End House (Hercule Poirot, #8)
  • Lord Edgware Dies (Hercule Poirot, #9)
  • Murder on the Orient Express (Hercule Poirot, #10)

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