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Dumb Witness

(Hercule Poirot #16)

3.82  ·  Rating details ·  16,799 ratings  ·  910 reviews
An elderly spinster has been poisoned in her country home. Everyone blamed Emily’s accident on a rubber ball left on the stairs by her frisky terrier. But the more she thought about her fall, the more convinced she became that one of her relatives was trying to kill her. On April 17th she wrote her suspicions in a letter to Hercule Poirot. Mysteriously he didn’t receive th ...more
Paperback, 411 pages
Published 2002 by HarperCollins (first published July 5th 1937)
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Simona Bartolotta
Sep 12, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: crime, in-italian, 1900
"The Hercule Poirots, my friend, need only to sit back in a chair and think."

If I started listing all the reasons why I can't do without Agatha Christie and her Poirot in my life, you'd probably reach through the screen thumbing your nose at all known laws of physics because, well, I'm sure you could recite them all by heart by now (I am very aware I can be that obnoxious). So I won't. I'll indulge my dark side and simply tell you why I didn't enjoy Dumb Witness (also known with the far more app
...more
Nikoleta
Feb 14, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery, classics
Αυτό το βιβλίο μου άρεσε πολύ, όχι για την ιδιαίτερη πλοκή του ή για την εξωφρενική φαντασία της συγγραφέως του (όχι ότι δεν τα είχε).
Το λάτρεψα διότι σε αυτό το βιβλίο, ο ήρωας του, Ηρακλής Πουαρώ, λύνει και δένει!!!
Πραγματικά κλέβει την παράσταση, λέει ψέματα, παίζει θέατρο, το καταδιασκεδάζει...σκαρφίζεται χίλιες δύο ιστορίες με υπερκινητικότητα, αλλά πάντα με την φινέτσα που τον χαρακτηρίζει!. Μια πολύ διασκεδαστική ιστορία, που στο μέλλον θα την ξαναδιάβαζα, κι ας ξέρω τώρα πια τον δολοφόνο
...more
Brenda
Seventy year old Miss Emily Arundell wasn’t looking forward to the Easter weekend when her family would descend on her. She knew they were all interested in a slice of her vast fortune; they had been told in no uncertain terms to wait until she died. But when she left her room in the dead of night unable to sleep, Emily tripped at the head of the stairs and tumbled to the bottom. After being checked over by her niece’s husband who was a doctor, it was found her only injuries were bruises and sho ...more
Nathan
Jan 09, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This book is really important to me now. But not because of the story. So this review will be drastically biased, and I will explain why in a moment.

If you follow my reviews, it's no surprise to you that I am a super Christie fan, and yes, I'll admit, in my experience reading her books she can do no wrong! Every book I've read has been fantastic or at least worth reading. I love her style, her characters, and her in general. I actually have a poster of her on my wall, no word of a lie.
This book
...more
David Schaafsma
“Hastings, a crime is a pot that boils and seethes and every now and then a significant fact comes to the surface and can be seen. There is something in the depths there—yes, there is something! I swear it by my faith in Hercule Poirot, I swear it!” --Poirot

Poirot Loses a Client is the original title of this mystery, and he does, but Christie decided later to call it Dumb Witness (Hercule Poirot #16, rolling right along here!) in honor of a dog named Peter, her beloved dog, and another, fictiona
...more
Shireen
Feb 12, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery, 2011
Agatha Christie, as usual, weaves a good tale. This one is unusual as a dog is one of the characters and even has a speaking part. For a dog lover, it's a great addition to the normal all-human mystery plot.

I had early on in my rereading of Dumb Witness remembered who the murderer was, but I couldn't remember the exact reason. Oh, the obvious one was there; but the underlying motivation, the driving emotion, now that continued to elude me right until the end. Knowing who the murderer was, I look
...more
Pants
Dec 03, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
How can I not love a book with a passage like this:
There was a parking area in the middle of the big square, though there were only a few cars occupying it. I duly parked the Austin, Poirot divested himself of his superfluous garments, and assured himself that his moustaches were in their proper condition of symmetrical flamboyance, and we were then ready to proceed. (Page 42)

Or a passage like this:
“I don’t know why dogs always go for postmen, I’m sure,” continued our guide.

“It’s a matter of rea
...more
Branwen Sedai *of the White Ajah*
Jan 18, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: thriller
"How lightly and easily you put the matter aside! Let me tell you that no matter is finished with until Hercule Poirot ceases to concern himself with it!"

The quite famous detective, Poirot, has just received a letter from a client who fears for her life. She is desperately afraid that someone in her family may attempt to harm her. The only problem is, by the time the letter reaches Poirot...the client is already dead. Now Poirot must work backwards and try to piece together all the conflicting i
...more
Salva
Aug 19, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: owned
In some of her novels, Christie raised my expectations! Now, reading other novels of hers, she does not seem to live up to those expectations.
The story began pretty well, but the first 150 pages were so boring I was about to leave the book unfinished. Thanks to Poirot's perfect analysis, it got exciting as I could not guess the murderer at all.
But it lacked a well-made justification, thus the three stars are all this book gets.
Zainab Shah
Jun 07, 2017 rated it it was amazing
LOVED IT
This is a story of a Miss Arundell who had an accident but was convinced that somebody had tried to murder her. After a few days she actually dies but a few days before her death she'd written to a real known detective about how she was in danger but the letter wasn't sent when she was alive.
I've never read any of Agatha Christie's book but have obviously known about her and now I know why her books are so frikin' famous cause this book was absolutely amazing and it literally keeps you h
...more
Mina kh
جز معدود کتاب هایی از پوآرو بود که خیلی جذبم نکرد. صاحبخونه یه سگ داره به اسم باب و نویسنده خیلی جاها از زبون سگ مینویسه. اینجوری که مثلا میگه: باب انگار تو دلش داره میگه فلان چیز و همینجوری یه پاراگراف حرف میزنه. این یکم حوصله سر بر شده بود.
Alaina
I think it's absurd how people were blaming a dog on Emily Arundell's horrible accident. Bob is a god damn dog. Don't blame him. However, that's not the cherry on top of this dessert, nope - Emily believes that one of her relatives is trying to kill her.

In the end, she writes to Detective Poirot for help but he receives the letter too late. Emily is already dead. Now Dumb Witness provides you a short list of suspects that are hungry for money or just.. ya know, hungry - because of Bob the dog. H
...more
Aušrinė
Jul 20, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: home-library
Nebylų liudytoją“ skaičiau itin atidžiai, nes kiekviena Agathos Christie paminėta detalė gali būti svarbi žudiko išaiškinimui. Stengiausi įsidėmėti viską, kad ir kokiame kasdieniškame kontekste tai būtų. Nuo pat pradžių galvojau, kad gydytojas, netekęs uoslės, turės įtakos. Taip ir buvo, bet teko laukti labai ilgai. Atrodo, kad kuo anksčiau knygoje paminima kokia nors detalė, tuo vėliau ji bus panaudota atskleidžiant nusikaltimą ir tuo svarbesnė ji bus.

Bet net ir sekdama visus įkalčius, vis tie
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Sheetal Maurya - Godse (Halo of Books)
There would be many mystery writers but none of them come close to Agatha Christe, We have already read and reviewed ‘And then there were none’ , ‘Murder on the Orient Express’ & ‘The ABC Murders’. I wanted to grab this book for a long time as the title and blurb are really intriguing.

Please read the full review on my blog Dumb Witness by Agatha Christie - Book review

This book is amazing; I love the suspense and plot. The Poirot’s way of detecting is something very interesting to read, which
...more
Elizabeth (Alaska)
This is one of the better Christie's I've read. Sometimes I find her prose leaves me wanting and sometimes I feel as if the story itself doesn't flow as I'd like it to. In this I have neither complaint. It is the construction/presentation of the story itself that excels for me. The characters are introduced in a logical fashion, for example - very Poirot-like!

I can't help but think that we are duped because we see things through Hastings' eyes. We see and hear what Poirot sees and hears. Hastin
...more
Keisha
Apr 17, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
4.5 stars
Jim
This book was also published under the title Dumb Witness in 1937 which is when Agatha Christie was in her prime. The story is narrated by Captain Hastings who plays Watson to Poirot's Holmes excellently.

Emily Arundell is an elderly lady living in the small English village of Market Basing with her companion, two servants, and several greedy heirs. The family comes to visit Aunt Emily during the Easter holiday ... and to try and get her to part with some of her money. During the visit Miss Emily
...more
Duffy Pratt
May 10, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: mystery
Diverting and enjoyable. This was probably the most straightforward of the Christie books I've read, and it worked very nicely for most of the way through. And the solution wasn't ridiculously stupid, like with Murder on the Orient Express, or And Then There Were None. Basically, the setup is that a woman has an accident where she falls down the stairs. She suspects the accident was more than an accident and does what anyone would do under the circumstances: she disinherits her whole family and ...more
Dina
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Kavita
May 21, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Poirot receives a rambling letter from a woman, which tells him absolutely nothing at all. But there is one curious feature to this letter. It was written two months ago. This arouses Poirot's curiosity and he pays the woman a visit, only to discover that she died a while after writing the letter, apparently of natural causes. Murder? No, says Hastings. Yes, says Poirot. And we know which of them we would believe!

I really enjoyed this book, though the solution was obvious once Poirot begins his
...more
Khaoula
نجمتان و نصف.
مع أن المجرم كان خارج توقعاتي، بما أن أجاثا في سردها
لم تركز عليه - و هذا ذكاء منها - لكن القصة بدت كأن
شيء ما ينقصها. كأنها مبتورة، خاصة أن حادثة الكلب و الشاهد
الأخرس ليست هي أهم ما في القصة عكس ما يوحي به العنوان.

كانت الرواية أقل من باقي ما قرأته لها،
إذ لم أقرأ في الأدب البوليسي لسواها.
Lexie
Aug 21, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: mystery, read-in-2016
Loooove this book
BookishSteph1
Aug 10, 2017 rated it really liked it
4.5 stars.
Madonna
Mar 23, 2012 rated it really liked it
What a delightful read! I'd forgotten how good Christie's books are. I've been reading too many modern detective stories. I'm planning to go back and read and reread Christie's titles once in a while, just to remember.
This was a good read. The title could refer to Bob the dog, but as I finished the book I realized it could also refer to Poirot's client--a dead woman. Poirot receives a letter months after it is written and the writer has died in the meantime. Was it deliberately mailed late or me
...more
Maureen
Dec 19, 2016 rated it it was ok
Shelves: agatha-christie
A pretty dull Christie, even with Hastings. The plot is quite clever but takes awhile to start and none of the characters leap from the page as they do in the best Poirot's. There wasn't enough depth of human emotion for me.
Hannah (Ivyclad Ideas)
Poirot novels are a bit hit and miss for me. Either I think they're alright, or I think they're completely implausible. (Then why have you read five of them in the last couple of months, I hear you ask. Because I will guess the solution to one of them if it kills me, goddammit!) This one picked up an extra star simply because I was impressed with how clever it was. (And, no, I did not guess it. Don't rub it in...)

The first four chapters never happened. They're a reconstruction from Emily Arundel
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Natalie (CuriousReader)
Dumb Witness is another clever and highly enjoyable Poirot mystery, narrated by the trusty Mr Hastings. One of the set-ups Christie seems especially good at (or maybe it’s just that I have a preference for it) is the mystery contained in one household or family. Each member of the family and the closest acquaintances of the family both having motives for killing someone off, and having secrets they try to keep hidden but which of course end up being discovered by Hercule Poirot in the end. The s ...more
Cherie
Jun 08, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: series
I liked Bob better than Captain Hastings! Bob was the dog.

This was a very good example of Christie's ability to really write a "who done it" and keep the reader guessing the whole time. It is also a good example of how politically incorrect some Christie's word usage is today. There is a chapter title and a discussion of an "person" in the woodpile that might offend some readers. At the time that the story was written, the word was still in use.
Vikas Singh
Aug 11, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This is one of my favourite reads because of Bob, the faithful terrier. The only Christie novel in which dog has a prominent place in the plot. And for a change, we find Poirot running around, trying to solve the case rather than sitting back and using his little grey cells. The imaginary dialogues attributed to Bob add to the overall atmosphere. A light fun read

Kelsey
Aug 10, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: classic, mystery, re-reads
Bob the dog is probably the best thing about this book. 😄 But really, this is probably one of my favorites of Christie's Poirot books.
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33,559 followers
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
...more

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)
“I have often had occasion to notice how, where a direct question would fail to elicit a response, a false assumption brings instant information in the form of a contradiction.” 16 likes
“The dog hunts rabbits. Hercule Poirot hunts murderers.” 12 likes
More quotes…