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Dead Man's Folly

(Hercule Poirot #33)

3.81  ·  Rating details ·  21,309 ratings  ·  1,040 reviews

Whilst organising a mock murder hunt for the village fete hosted by Sir George and Lady Stubbs, a feeling of dread settles on the famous crime novelist Adriane Oliver. Call it instinct, but it's a feeling she just can't explain...or get away from.

In desperation she summons her old friend, Hercule Poirot -- and her instincts are soon proved correct when the 'pretend' murde

Audio CD, 6 pages
Published September 8th 2006 by BBC Audiobooks (first published October 1956)
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Amanda (Artist Cat) Hi! Sorry, but this is not a place for trivia! This is for: A. Questions you want to ask people who have read the book before you read it B. Questions…moreHi! Sorry, but this is not a place for trivia! This is for: A. Questions you want to ask people who have read the book before you read it B. Questions you want to ask other readers when you get confused by the contents C. What am I doing answering a question posted four years ago?! Okay, I'm out of here...(less)

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Ahmad Sharabiani
Dead Man's Folly (Hercule Poirot #33), Agatha Christie

With Mrs Oliver, Poirot discovers Marlene dead in the boathouse. Hattie cannot be found. Mrs Oliver produces an abundance of theories to explain the murder and the disappearance, while the police and Poirot narrow the field from all attending the fete, to those familiar with the Murder Hunt.

The investigation focuses first on Etienne de Sousa and briefly on Amanda Brewis. Further confusion is added by the behaviour of the Legges, staying in a
For those who have read my reviews in the past, I have mentioned that I enjoy reading mysteries as palette cleansers in between denser reads. I use the summer school vacation to read a lot of classics, nonfiction, and poetry collections that I may not have time for during a busy school schedule. Yet, it is impossible to maintain this level of reading all the time, and, rather than go into a reading slump, I read mysteries. I have a few favorite contemporary authors, but I still measure all myste ...more
Aug 03, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
There's something to be said about red herrings and clues. When an author of the crime genre renders it impossible to distinguish between the two, it means that the book one is reading is worth praise.

Praise Dame Christie with great praise. Indeed, the queen of crime is also the first cozy mystery writer. This is a claim I make without delving into the history of cozies but I found this fact often online.

Hercule Poirot nabs the criminal. But how wonderful it was that the criminal is not on scene
Review updated on June 6, 2020 (aka The Year of Coronavirus).

"He went slowly out of the boat house, unhappy and displeased with himself. He, Hercule Poirot, had been summoned to prevent a murder and he had not prevented it. It had happened. What was even more humiliating was that he had no real ideas, even now, as to what has actually happened. It was ignominious. And tomorrow, he must return to London, defeated. His ego was seriously deflated. Even his mustache drooped."

It all began when Mrs.
Review to follow, but a wonderful story, especially with Mrs Ariadne Oliver.

So this is book 31 (or 32) in the ongoing Buddy Read of all the Poirot novels, and far from becoming bored with Poirot, I have come across novels, like this one, that I have never read before. And in addition, like this book, I have experienced some real gems.

In this adventure, Poirot gets involved in a country fayre, when his friend Mrs Ariadne Oliver, the famous detective novelist (Sven ! ) invites him to present the p
Jan 31, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: who-done-it

Hercule Poirot stood in front of the gathered group, toying with his ostentatious mustache and proclaimed, “Using my methods of deduction I have ascertained with much ingenuity, the vexing solution to this crime.”

He paused to build the on the moment and allow his words of triumph to have their greatest effect.

“The Jacuzzi salesman dressed in a gimp outfit, first rendered our victim unconscious with a sharp blow to the back of the head; drugged him; then gutted him with a Samurai sword that belon
Sumit RK
Jul 03, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This one has a perfect setting for a murder mystery : Starts with a "Murder Hunt" (A treasure hunt with a twist) and things start going wrong.
The murder seems without a motive at all & the victim has no known enemies And the mystery keeps deepening. Looking back,the finer clues were very carefully placed right before you, like missing pieces of a jigsaw puzzle.
The characters, the setting & the story all are great. The only complain is that Poirot's part in entire investigation is very limite
4.5 "I almost had it this time!" stars

#6 in my Agatha Christie Challenge.

Well, I tell you that it is a secret desire of mine to go a mystery dinner theatre. But certainly not this particular fete! In Dead Man's Folly(which does sound like a pirate book) two Christie characters- Ariadne Oliver and the greatest Belgian(besides Jean Claude Van Damme), Hercule Poiriot meet up and try to solve the baffling case of the murder of a teenage girl and disappearance of a rich man's wife. It makes for a g
A good plot which wasn't properly realized is what I felt about this installment of the Poirot series. Truly; when the story ended with Poirot's fantastic conclusion I was agape. It was like I certainly had missed many vital clues or got mixed up red herrings with the real clues. Perhaps I did. But here is the thing. The story was promising to be entertaining in the beginning. The tension, suspicion, and excitement were correctly built. It was a great premise - a staged mock murder-mystery endin ...more
David Schaafsma
Poirot #31: Enter Ariadne Oliver, celebrated mystery writer, who is one of the most interesting and refreshing additions to the Poirot world, giving Christie a chance to do a little self-deprecating meta-fictional commentary on mystery writing, and herself.

“I mean, what can you say about how you write your books? What I mean is, first you've got to think of something, and then when you've thought of it you've got to force yourself to sit down and write it. That's all."

Christie gets a chance thro
Jul 08, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I read somewhere that detective novels, particularly the ones from the Golden Age, can in fact be considered 'fantasies' since the culprit(s) is always found out and the 'order' restored. I can see that, but they are also more than just that - the result being more than the sum of its parts.

Once more Christie delivers a great mystery featuring not only the great Poirot but also the indomitable Ariadne Oliver, who I personally adore. The author is not exactly kind to her, especially in her descri
Lady Clementina ffinch-ffarowmore

In this, the thirty-third Poirot mystery, Poirot receives a request for help from mystery-writer Ariadne Oliver. Mrs Oliver has been down at Nasse House, Nassecombe, Devon, where a village fête is to be held and one attraction is a ‘murder hunt’ on the lines of a treasure hunt which she is in charge of organising. (Poirot is to be present in the guise of giving out the prizes.) While the plans are going along well, Mrs Oliver is certain that she senses something wrong, perhaps that someone has b

Bruce Beckham
Apr 03, 2018 rated it really liked it
Ah, yes – another good one that got me hopping mad at the denouement, wanting to kick the author but knowing I only had myself to blame.

Published in 1956 and set in the grounds of an English country house – in Devonshire, upon the wooded banks of a tidal river – Dead Man’s Folly features wealthy landowner Sir George Stubbs. He and his entourage arrange a garden fete, open to the public. Batty celebrity author Ariadne Oliver (surely Dame Christie’s alter ego) is enlisted to create a ‘murder myste
Sep 30, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Having been to visit Agatha Christie's Greenway I had to read this book as the story is taking place there.

I found this a rather clever whodunnit told with the occasional wit and sarcasm. The description of doing a jigsaw puzzle on page 185 was fabulous!
Laurel Young
I enjoyed Dead Man's Folly whilst reading it but felt afterwards that there were too many elements Dame Agatha used better elsewhere, despite it being from arguably the strongest part of her long career. I don't mind that she reuses certain concepts because she does it cleverly--looking at an idea from all angles and showing many possibilities. So it is never a criticism to say that she did something (say, used a certain type of red herring) in another novel. However, it does invite comparisons ...more
After reading a few so-and-so novels from Agatha Christie, The Queen of Murder finally worked her magic in this book! I'm quite satisfied with the murder mystery this time! The explanation is superb and the sense of humor is great! XD
Rachel Hall
Jun 06, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Despite the novels of Agatha Christie having been extensively featured on British television and having enjoyed many, I am almost embarrassed to confess that this is my first read of her work in print. Having read very few of the novels that are typically considered as the golden age of crime fiction I chose this book for several reasons, not least because of it's compact length and a humorous synopsis which made it sound so accessible to a novice of the genre. The other significant factor was t ...more
The story opens when Hercule Poirot receives a phone call from mystery writer Ariadne Oliver. She needs him. She is organizing a "murder hunt" for a village fête and has a feeling that something is wrong. She believes something dreadful is about to happen so she calls Poirot. Despite Poirot's dropping everything and going to Nasse House he is unable to stop a murder when the pretend victim, 14 year old Marlene Tucker, is found strangled.

The setting is typical of what you find in a Agatha Christi
Lisa Kay
Greenway Boathouse, bought by Ms. Christie for £6,000 in 1932, was the setting for a murder in Dead Man's Folly.

★★★★☆ (This is a review of the audiobook.) What can I say about a talented actor such as David Suchet narrating a classic Agatha Christie mystery? The same actor who has not only won awards for his audiobook narrations, but actually played Dame Christie’s iconic fictional Belgian detective, Poirot? Only that he kicks this one up a notch - or a star, anyway.

If you haven’t listened to
Apr 04, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2017
One thing is for sure: I am never disappointed by the Queen of mystery.
Susan in NC
Jul 28, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Great fun, I kept remembering seeing the David Suchet dramatization of this one, which really brought it to life. I listened to the audiobook while reading the ebook, always enjoyable - this one was narrated by Suchet himself. He is a very good narrator, but I actually prefer Hugh Fraser; Suchet gives some of his characters annoying accents - probably authentic to a British listener, but rather unintelligible at times unless I slow the speed way down. Fraser is always clear as a bell, and humoro ...more
Oct 29, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
I thought this book from beginning to end was classic Agatha Christie. I was happy to read it, especially since it felt like the last few books have been hit or misses for me.

This one has Hercule Poirot in it from beginning to end. Called in by Adriane Oliver because of a "feeling" she has, Poirot travels to her and listens to her explaining she feels she is being led to something in order for a real murder to take place.

The characters in this one are really fascinating. We have Adriane who was
Feb 13, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery
Dead Man’s Folly is one of Agatha Christie’s jolliest stories, evidently one she had fun writing. It is set in a country fête held in the grounds of a large country house, so the cast of characters includes the whole span of village life from “Sir George”, through foreign hikers from the next-door hostel, to the locals being obligingly colourful. “Du ee want the ferry, sir?” There is, fortunately, a list of characters at the front of the book in case you get lost.

Christie fans will spot many of
Aug 28, 2020 rated it really liked it
One of the better late Christies. Perhaps, the best use of her alter persona Ariadne Oliver. A very enjoyable first half with an over complicated mystery.
Richard Derus
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Michael Jandrok
Autumn is the time of year when I steer my reading towards darker shores, usually in the form of horror and mysteries. I’ve been rereading a lot of Stephen King lately, but I thought it might be time for a quick Agatha Christie palate cleanser… it was that I decided on “Dead Man’s Folly,” a late-model Hercule Poirot joint that went down fairly smooth, although not without a nagging issue that almost served to ruin the whole thing for me.

A QUICK NOTE ON SPOILERS: Reviewing mysteries is tough
Jul 14, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
3.5 stars. I like Poirot and his need for lines and objects to be just so, his moustaches to be oh so perfectly pointed, and his shoes to be very shiny. I remember reading this one, though I had forgotten a lot of the plot. I knew there was something fishy going on with the hat. Ariadne Oliver was silly and funny, and I liked how she got Poirot to travel immediately to Nasse House. There are, of course, some horrid statements and beliefs expressed by a variety of characters (the oh so fun aspect ...more
Michael A
May 22, 2014 rated it liked it
I almost rated this two stars, but I don't think I can go that low after thinking about it a little bit. The curious thing about Christie in the later books is her tendency to break her own mysteries. Here is a great example.

I do like her self reference, though it is deeply superficial. The odd Mrs. Oliver again makes her appearance, trying to arrange a pageant of murder within a book that does the same thing. Once again we have her saying she doesn't know why people like her books and having di
Jan 02, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: crime fans, murder mystery fans, Poirot fans, Agatha Christie fans,
Shelves: 4
I've only read two of Agatha Christie's novels before this (And Then There Were None and The Man in the Brown Suit, the former which I found brilliant and the latter which I found dreadful), but I'm very clearly developing a love for Agatha and her marvelous brain; I've heard it said that Dead Man's Folly is lesser Agatha Christie and that this is a rehash of her previous Poirots, but I found this dastardly delightful. Sure, I'd seen DMF twice adapted for the small screen (with David Suchet and ...more
Jill Hutchinson
Jan 07, 2017 rated it liked it
A short and interesting (although a bit far-fetched) entry in the Poirot series in which Poirot gets a call from his friend and best selling mystery writer, Ariadne Oliver, begging him to come to a country estate where "something is not quite right". She does not elaborate but Poirot is curious enough to make the trip to Nasse House where Ms. Oliver is preparing a Murder Game for the village fair. Although she cannot seem to explain what "isn't quite right", it soon turns out that, indeed, somet ...more
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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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