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Elephants Can Remember

(Hercule Poirot #40)

3.63  ·  Rating details ·  21,395 ratings  ·  1,125 reviews
A classic Hercule Poirot investigation, Agatha Christie’s Elephants Can Remember has the expert detective delving into an unsolved crime from the past involving the strange death of a husband and wife.

Hercule Poirot stood on the clifftop. Here, many years earlier, there had been a fatal accident followed by the grisly discovery of two bodies—a husband and wife who had been
Paperback, 224 pages
Published February 1st 1984 by Berkley (first published November 1972)
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Mary True experience, raising twins, watched it happen more than once that a boy would be interested in one and then change his mind and carries his…moreTrue experience, raising twins, watched it happen more than once that a boy would be interested in one and then change his mind and carries his affection for the other.(less)
Orinoco Womble (tidy bag and all) That's an opinion, not a question. Go write a review. That's what GR is here for. The question section is for clarification.

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Laurel Young
Mar 07, 2011 rated it it was ok
Elephants Can Remember made me sad...because I solved it. You see, the reason I hold Dame Agatha Christie in such high regard is that she always outsmarts me, and I don't mind in the least--I love her for her twisted mind. ;) No other author can do it; fond as I am of Christie's Golden Age contemporaries--Dorothy Sayers, Patricia Wentworth, Josephine Tey, Ngaio Marsh, et. al.--they never baffle me unless they haven't played fair and given me enough to go on. But Agatha...I rarely figure her out ...more
Jan 05, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: reviewed
“Elephants can remember, but we are human beings and mercifully human beings can forget.”

My first Christie of 2017. It took me a few attempts to get into the story, not because it was difficult to find a way to engage with the plot but purely because I enjoyed re-reading the opening of the story where Ariadne Oliver, Dame Agatha's alter ego in this series, considers the different ways to wear a hat and which hat is appropriate for which occasion.

I love Ariadne. She's the scatty, sassy, creative,
Apr 02, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2018, stars-4-0
“She was a lucky woman who had established a happy knack of writing what quite a lot of people wanted to read. Wonderful luck that was, Mrs. Oliver thought to herself.

I actually really enjoyed this novel although it was very different to the usual Agatha Christie murder mysteries. Elephants Can Remember deals with a cold case, one devoid of threat or danger, where Poirot tries to put together events that happened 12 years prior. This could sound drab but for the brilliance of Ariadne Oliver. Sh
When I first read this novel, I did not realise that it was among the late ones, published in 1972 (and AC died in 1976).
Now it was a more conscious read and bearing the publishing date in mind, it really felt a little ... hmm... maybe "tired" is the appropriate word.

The mystery in itself was quite intriguing, but the way it was presented, was not. Hercule Poirot and Mrs Oliver both lacked energy and the solution was also just an eye-witness eventually confirming & telling what happened.

Mar 08, 2013 rated it did not like it
Shelves: hercule-poirot
This was my least favorite of all the Poirot novels. On the surface it was a Poirot novel, possessing all the necessary elements: the complicated mystery, the little clues that don't seem at first relevant, the humor that comes out mainly through the side kick full of fanciful ideas, the love story between two young people, and of course, Poirot himself. But despite all these elements, the entire book read, not like an Agatha Christie, but like someone attempting to write in the style of Agatha ...more
Karen ⊰✿
Jun 28, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: towerteamsvi
Poirot is still my favourite of AC's detectives. And every time I read one, I picture David Suchet in my mind. :)
Ariadne Oliver returns in this book and she is such a fantastic character. Apparently she is slightly auto-biographical and if that is the case than Ms Christie must have been a ton of fun to be around.

As usual, there are loads of clues and potential plot lines, and although I mostly got there, I still didn't quite solve everything. Great fun!
May 04, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Reviewing an audio book is difficult because you have to separate out the different aspects: story, narrator and how well the story works in this media.
First, the story feels a bit typical and mundane with no real excitement or cause pushing the storyline along. It really comes down to a bunch of old people gossiping over a murder-suicide. The whole justification for this matter being brought to light just doesn't compel one to care all that much.
The narrator did a superb job differentiating the
. . . _ _ _ . . .
Dec 11, 2016 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Ας το ομολογήσω πια : η Αγκάθα Κρίστι έγραψε και μερικές πατάτες, έτσι δεν είναι ; Ίσως το πιο προφανές whodunit που έχω διαβάσει. Όπως και άλλοι εδώ μέσα είπαν, η λύση του "μυστηρίου" ήταν προφανής. Αλλά το πρόβλημα δεν είναι αυτό. Το πρόβλημα είναι πως ένα βιβλίο γραμμένο το 1972, φαντάζει τόσο πολύ "παλιομοδίτικο" για την εποχή του : μακρυμάλληδες που παίρνουν ναρκωτικά, και αχ αυτοί οι σιδηροδρομικοί υπάλληλοι που κάνουν απεργία. Σαν θείτσα από την Βικτωριανή εποχή που τηλεμεταφέρθηκε στα 70 ...more
mark monday
Dec 08, 2010 rated it liked it
Choose Your Own Adventure!

The elephant brain is denser than the human’s, and the temporal lobes, associated with memory, are more developed than in humans. Elephant lobes also have more folding, so that they can store more information. That’s why elephants have excellent memory. But why? Elephants can recognize over 200 different individuals. This is essential, as females depend on one another for raising the young, more than in the case of other mammals. A mother can remember who is trustful an
Alexa ❤️
Jul 03, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
"Elephants can remember," said Mrs Oliver, "but we are human beings and mercifully human beings can forget." (Ariadne Oliver page 299).

4 Stars

Elephants can remember was a satisfying read about a cold case from approximately 20 years ago where everyone involved remembers different things about the victims; you don't know who is right, wrong and which if any of it is relevant. But of course it is nothing for Hercule Poriot's little grey cells.

It was interesting (as I knew who done it via watc
Sep 22, 2018 rated it it was ok
Shelves: owned-books
Before the middle of the book, I already knew the solution to the crimes. Moreover, the explanation for the crimes was too melodramatic. And I love Poirot, but he appears little in this story, as Ariadne Oliver does too many investigations. Well, I read it in my native language and I got it from the public library where I work, but I have this book in the original in my home. Now, I don't know when I will read this story again to improve my English.
 Krankenschwester Rahma.
هنا سنعود بذاكرة للجريمة في ماضي لأن للحكايا الماضي ظلال طويلة .المحقق هيركول سيفتح جريمة اغلقت بسبب رغبة صديقته الكاتبة .حبكة القصة بديعة و نمط آخر لاغاتا . هي مأساة الحب.
Apr 03, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Ariadne Oliver plays a large part in the solving of a cold case. While it's a Poirot story, Ariadne takes up much of the book, to-ing and fro-ing, and shamelessly pumping various individuals involved with the murdered inviduals for information about the odd case. She's hilarious, and for that alone, I'm giving this book 3.5 stars.
Hiba Arrame
Mar 11, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: paper-copies
I wouldn't say I didn't like it, but it wasn't really that good, nor that captivating. But I must say that I absolutely loved the ending where everything came together, even though I had my suspicions even before it was declared.
It's a story of love and jealousy and mental unstableness. Quite interesting.
David Schaafsma
“She was a lucky woman who had established a happy knack of writing what quite a lot of people wanted to read. Wonderful luck that was, Mrs. Oliver thought to herself.”--Ariadne Oliver

One more to go! I have read all the Christie Poirot books in order, the last couple years or so, and this is the last one she wrote, published in 1972, when she was 81, though she wrote the last intended one in the series, Curtain, in the forties, to be released at the conclusion of the series. The first, The Myste
Aug 16, 2010 rated it it was ok
I was too distracted by the impossible timeline of Mrs. Oliver's age vs. the length of time she and Poirot have been friends to focus on the story.

If she was a bridesmaid at her friend's wedding, then they must have been around the same age--presumably within five years of each other. Now, if that school friend was 35 when she died, and her death occurred 13 years ago, that would make Mrs. Oliver at most 53 years old. How, then could she and Poirot have been friends for 40 years, as she says in
Richard Derus
May 12, 2017 rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
May 08, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ttv, mystery
Rating: 3/5

12 or so years after the fact, Poirot is determined to solve this mystery. A husband and wife were found dead - was it a suicide pact, or did one shoot the other, and then themselves? After a strange woman approaches Ariadne Oliver asking this, Ariadne brings the issue to Poirot, and together, they attempt to find any sort of clue that will point them in the right direction. Was it because one of them had failing health, and they decided they couldn't live without each other? Was ther
Kim Kaso
A 4+, not top level, but very pleasing, nonetheless. As with most of the Mrs. Oliver/Poirot books, a little too much Ariadne, but I can forgive that. Many red herrings, and many trips into the past...I had it figured out early on, as soon as twins & wigs entered the discussion, but after years of reading Christie & other mysteries, it is hard to be totally surprised. Second tier Christie, but still very entertaining & fun. Just right for being sick in bed, as I have been most of this ...more
Nikki Nielsen
May 05, 2008 rated it it was amazing
I was pleasantly surprised to find that this is a Hercule Poirot/Ariadne Oliver Christie. I love the way the slightly pompous(rightly so) investigator Poirot and his dear mystery writing friend Ariadne interact. I found myself wondering if Agatha was painting a picture of herself in Miss Oliver's character.
'Elephants Can Remember' is your basic cold case file, solved. The trail is cold, and there are no true clues to inspect, only vague hints by those in-directly involved so long ago. 'Old sins
Hagar Awad
Sep 02, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Hagar by: Eman
القصة حلوة و الفكرة حلوة و النهاية حلوة و مُرضية
بس أنا كان عندى مشكلة مع الحوار و حاساه غير منسق و غير منطقى..يمكن عيب من الترجمة مش أكتر

لكن بوجه عام، أنا سعيدة إنى قريت الرواية دى لأجاثا :)
Nov 09, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
What can I say. This was my favorite Poirot book in some time (the last one being Death on the Nile) and everything worked wonderfully throughout.

Mrs. Ariadne Oliver, mystery writer, is approached by an older woman (Mrs. Burton-Cox) at a luncheon about her goddaughter's (Celia Ravenscroft) possible engagement to this woman's son (Desmond). The woman wants to if Celia possibly knows more than she is telling about a probable murder suicide by her parents more than a decade ago.

Mrs. Oliver, feeling
Vikas Singh
Give it to Agatha Christie's superb story telling skills that the ace detective Poiroit is able to solve the mystery long after the crime has been committed. The only Poiroit novel in which his investigative effort is amply supported by another person. However compared to her other crime novels, this one is a bit flat as the end is abrupt and there are just too many coincidences.
Jasmine Darcy
Update: Noooo! I've been spoiled for this book and I'm not sure if I'm ever going to pick this up.
Me and my dang spoiler-attracting eyes...
Apr 24, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Ενδιαφέρον, αλλά όχι από τα καλύτερα της Κρίστι.
Reading this at the same time as Agatha Christie's autobiography made it super fun. I see SO much of Agatha in Mrs. Oliver.
I guessed what happened, and how, but I think much of that is I've read a LOT of Agatha Christie in the last few years. And really there weren't a lot of red herrings in this one.

Edited: I dropped it to 3 stars after thinking about it/ discussing it a bit more. Specifically, there were some mysteries that happened that were set up but never resolved. But still - very fun to
Jul 20, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
من الروايات الرائعة لأجاثا :)

لقد انتابنى هذا الشعور (الذى نادرا ما ينتابنى ) : انى مش قادرة أسيب الروايه من يدى من كتر ما هى شيقة و فى نفس الوقت مش عايزة أخلصها بسرعة ..
أعلم أن أجاثا أكثر من رائعة لكن هذه الروايه "أدهشتنى" كما أدهشتنى روايتها الأخرى " جريمة فى قطار الشرق السريع "
أريد أن أضيف ان عبقرية أجاثا لا تقتصر فقط على محتوى و أسلوب رواياتها و لكن هذه العبقرية و الروعة تشمل أيضا اختيارها لأسامى رواياتها ..
وأخيرا و ليس أخرا أحب أن أقتبس أخر سطر فى هذه الرواية ,ألا و هو
: "بامكان الأفيال أ
Mon Maryum
The character development and the writing style was awesome in the beginning, and it was good here and there afterwards from there. Other than that, the book was mostly boring. This is the first Agatha Christie book I've read because this one was short. But I am hoping I will like her more as I finish more of her books
Caidyn (SEMI-HIATUS; BW Reviews; he/him/his)
This review can also be found here!

This was better, but not by much. That disappoints me since this is a Poirot mystery and I loved Poirot. And, I actually remember watching the episode of this one but I literally forgot all of the details besides loving the last name Ravenscroft. Thanks, brain for not letting me down on this one.

Anyways, this was okay. Just okay. It’s not memorable since there’s literally no action to the story, even if the mystery is engaging. Ariadne Oliver has a goddaughter.
Adela Cacovean
Aug 23, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: books-i-won

Dintotdeauna mi-au plăcut romanele poliţiste, mai ales cele ale Agathei Christie. Aşa se face că m-am înscris pe un blog la un concurs Agatha Christie şi am câştigat romanul "Elefanţii nu uită niciodată", de care m-am apucat de îndată şi l-am şi terminat de citit în scurt timp. Cu această ocazie, îi mulţumesc din nou Colecţionarului pentru carte.

Misterul pe care Poirot trebuie să-l desluşească de data aceasta e cel puţin ciudat. În urmă cu peste zece ani, un cuplu, soţ şi soţie, despre care se
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  • Agatha Christie: A Biography
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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 eighty crime novels and story collections, fourteen plays, and several other books. Her books have sold roughly four billion copies and have been translated into 45 languages. She is t

Other books in the series

Hercule Poirot (1 - 10 of 41 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)
“Elephants can remember, but we are human beings and mercifully human beings can forget.” 55 likes
“She was a lucky woman who had established a happy knack of writing what quite a lot of people wanted to read.” 53 likes
More quotes…