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The ABC Murders

(Hercule Poirot #13)

really liked it 4.00  ·  Rating details ·  78,299 ratings  ·  3,634 reviews
There's a serial killer on the loose, bent on working his way through the alphabet. And as a macabre calling card he leaves beside each victim's corpse the ABC Railway Guide open at the name of the town where the murder has taken place. Having begun with Andover, Bexhill and then Churston, there seems little chance of the murderer being caught - until he makes the crucial ...more
Paperback, Agatha Christie Signature Edition, 331 pages
Published 2001 by HarperCollins (first published January 6th 1936)
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Alexandra Of course you can! You may be confused about the characters appearances to some extent. However all you have to do to fix that problem, is look up a…moreOf course you can! You may be confused about the characters appearances to some extent. However all you have to do to fix that problem, is look up a quick description online. Christie does an excellent job of allowing to book to be picked up and read by a person who has no experience of the series. (less)
Louie You can purchase a copy online through another website/at a store or you can get it through the Library. Because you cannot read books on goodreads,…moreYou can purchase a copy online through another website/at a store or you can get it through the Library. Because you cannot read books on goodreads, you can only read about books, authors and reviews of books.(less)
Murder on the Orient Express by Agatha ChristieAnd Then There Were None by Agatha ChristieThe Mysterious Affair at Styles by Agatha ChristieDeath on the Nile by Agatha ChristieThe ABC Murders by Agatha Christie
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Community Reviews

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really liked it 4.00  · 
Rating details
 ·  78,299 ratings  ·  3,634 reviews


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Jason Koivu
Jan 16, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: detective, mystery
Agatha Christie is such a crafty devil that midway through a novel she might have you believing that YOU are the murderer!

Indeed, The ABC Murders uses slight-of-hand most deftly. Again, I was thrown off the scent of the real killer and was ready to blame others. I feel a bit foolish when she dangles bait in front of me, and although I guess it for what it is, I take it anyway. And yet, if ever it felt good to be played the fool, it's while reading a cracking good mystery.

Ah, but never fear, Her
...more
Adina
Back when I had an Audible subscription I acquired 2 literature courses and one of them is called The Secrets of Great Mystery and Suspense Fiction. It is a history of the genre and its many ramifications. There are quite a few books mentioned and I am planning to read most of them as they appear in the lectures. Since Agatha Christie is one of the most important personalities in the history of Crime fiction (among Poe, Doyle, Hammett and Chandler) her works are extensively present in these lect ...more
Dita
Jul 11, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Aggie, you wily old bird! You got me again!!
Ahmad Sharabiani
The A.B.C. Murders, Agatha Christie
The A.B.C. Murders is a work of detective fiction by British writer Agatha Christie, featuring her characters Hercule Poirot, Arthur Hastings and Chief Inspector Japp, as they contend with a series of killings by a mysterious murderer known only as "A.B.C.". The book was first published in the UK by the Collins Crime Club on 6 January 1936. The form of the novel is unusual, combining first-person narrative and third-person narrative. This approach was famously
...more
Adrian
My musings to follow later, but a great detective story.

At Christmas 2018 I watched the latest televised version of this wonderful story starring John Malkovich as Hercule Poirot. Now in my opinion if I hadn't known it was meant to be Poirot I wouldn't have guessed. It was a good and enjoyable tv detective story but in my view it was way too dark and brooding to be a Poirot. And having just finished this book for the first time, I think that my view of the TV show has been reinforced, it was enj
...more
Valerie
Dec 21, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Geometry Students
Recommended to Valerie by: Grandma
Shelves: math
I try to get my math students to read mysteries, because the logical skills of finding a pattern and using inductive and deductive reasoning are often skillfully laid out. If you've read this book, you know why its one that I use to illustrate that point in my class. Sadly, the point is underappreciated by my high school students.
Ginger
Dec 05, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2017
The book starts off with a methodical, serial killer sending Hercule Poirot a letter of a future murder! Did a person just die and how do they find the victim?

Enter the mind of the great Agatha Christie.

I loved that Agatha Christie went in a completely new direction with this plot. She usually does a singular murder, not a manhunt on stopping a serial killer.

The last part of the book made this a 4-star book for me!
It was lagging in the middle for me. I didn’t think the serial killer was who we w
...more
Richard Derus
May 28, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
My review of the actual story is over here: Murder-Go-Round: Thirteen at Dinner, The A.B.C. Murders, Funerals are Fatal

SO DON'T ANYONE SNARK AT ME ABOUT THIS POST. I'LL DELETE YOUR POST IMMEDIATELY.

2019 UPDATE I watched the Amazon Prime 3-part adaptation. It wasn't at all bad. I still think of Suchet as Poirot, but wasn't distracted by Malkovich in the role as I worried I might be. His Poirot is very different from the canonical one. Not bad, please understand, just different; his moustaches are
...more
Vikas Singh
Aug 11, 2018 rated it it was amazing
One of the most engrossing Poirot stories. It has a great beginning and as the plot progresses you stay glued trying to make a sense of it all. Tantalizingly, clues are scattered loosely to off track you. And then finally with a flourish Poirot reveals the murderer you are left gaping at the cleverness of author in steering such a plot. I loved Poirot's quote at the end ' … but for myself I consider your crime not an English crime at all- not above board- not sporting'
Shobhit Sharad
May 28, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Agatha Christie is a WITCH! I don't know how but she manages to confound me EVERY TIME I read one of her books. Specially, with this one. You're going with the story, reading with a flow, building up to the climax, and then suddenly whatever you were thinking is snatched away from you, and you begin to look at the things in a way that you never thought of until now.

And to do her justice, not only was this story (and any of her others) thrilling, but it had an element of reality better than most
...more
Heidi
Jun 03, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mysteries, 2019-goal
I love that this Poirot mystery wasn’t the usual drawing room style (until the end of course) plot line usually delivered by my favorite mustachioed Belgian detective. And an extra star for a really original and nearly modern plot line.
Aditi
“Our weapon is our knowledge. But remember, it may be a knowledge we may not know that we possess.”

----Agatha Christie


Agatha Christie, the Queen of Mystery, has spun and extremely intriguing crime fiction and the thirteenth tale from her Hercule Poirot series called, The A.B.C. Murders that revolves around the anonymous letters stating as well as challenging Poirot that a murder will take place in the alphabetical order in a random town, and that intrigues the clever Poirot to come out of his
...more
Brenda
Was the killer working his way through the alphabet? That’s what M. Hercule Poirot wanted to know. And his offsider Captain Hastings was of the same mind.

Andover and the elderly Mrs Ascher; Bexhill and a young Miss Betty Barnard and Churston and a gentleman by the name of Sir Carmichael Clarke had all met untimely deaths at the hands of a maniac who would leave the ABC Railway guide near to or on the body, showing each destination as proof he was once again bettering the police, but especially M
...more
Jay Schutt
Nov 13, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: owned, mystery
What genius Agatha Christie is! To lead us all around, this way and that, just to tie a murder mystery up in a neat little bow. Excellent!
Katie Lumsden
Jan 03, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really enjoyed this one - another engaging Christie mystery.
Beata
Jul 29, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
One of the best HP cases.
Miriam
Jan 07, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery
These alphabetical serial murders are a bit different from the usual Christie crimes -- or ARE they?

For once I solved the murder before the end. My little gray cells must be working harder...or I've simply read enough of these stories to be a better guesser.
Amy | shoutame
Mar 09, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: classics
Agatha Christie is quickly becoming one of my favourite authors and definitely a go-to author for when I fancy a quick pick-me-up!

This novel is the 13th book in the Hercule Poirot series, I am reading them out of order as I'm just grabbing them from my library's e-book collection when they become available - although I don't think it matters too much if you read them slightly out of order!

- This novel follows Poirot as he endeavours to solve a series of mysterious murders. After receiving an ano
...more
Poonam
3.5 stars

Even though this book belongs to the Poirot series it is very different to the other Poirot books. Most of the books in this series belong to the cozy mystery genre and the only other time I have read Christie attempt something different in the Poirot series was in The Big Four. That was not something I enjoyed but relieved to say I actually enjoyed this attempt.

In this the murderer sends letters to Poirot himself issuing a challenge. Reminded me of the infamous Zodiac Killer.

The whole
...more
Tim
This is without a doubt one of the most enjoyable of the Poirot novels. Christie takes the usual formula and puts a bit of a different spin on it, creating one of her most compelling stories as well as one of the most unique.

Prior to this novel, all of Poirot’s cases have been of a more “intimate” nature (Poirot’s own words). They’ve all been classic locked room mysteries where we had all our suspects lined in a row. It was all a mater of finding motive and opportunity. Here Poirot is dealing w
...more
Noha Badawi
Dec 09, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I get it now why people call her, the queen of crime
Melisa
Jun 18, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I don’t read serial killer books. Unless it’s Agatha Christie.
Erin *Proud Book Hoarder*
“There is nothing so terrible as to live in an atmosphere of suspicion - to see eyes watching you and the love in them changing to fear - nothing so terrible as to suspect those near and dear to you - It is poisonous - a miasma.”

Hercule Poirot gets a few surprises – his old friend Hastings has come for an extended stay and visit, and a serial killer has decided to target him with teasing notes before he strikes.

As always, clever. The point of this one was the journey and not the destination/cu
...more
Mitch
Sep 26, 2011 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Before I begin my review, let me start off my saying I am a HUGE fan of Agatha Christie. Throughout the years I have always used her novels as "go to" books if I am in a literary dry spell and yearn to read something I am guarentee to enjoy. My girl Aggie usually hits the spot! However, sadly, I must say that "The A.B.C. Murders" is thus far my least favourite of all her books.

The following may contain spoilers:

Poirot, everyone's favourite detective, receives a mysterious letter warning him of
...more
Lata
Dec 20, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
4.5 stars. I have a soft spot for this particular Christie. This is the first story I read by this grande dame when I was a kid and had exhausted ALL the Nancy Drews and other mysteries aimed at kids in the library. The librarian recommended Agatha Christie to me, and this was where I started with Christie's large catalogue.
I found the plot riveting then and still so now, so many years and books later.
This story of a serial killer with Poirot, and an eager Hastings, on his trail moved along wel
...more
Piyangie
Nov 13, 2018 rated it liked it
In The ABC Murders Poirot is challenged by a serial killer, or it seems to be the case. The murderer is so bold that he even informs Poirot in advance where the murder is to take place. Moreover, the murderer chooses the place and the victim in alphabetical order.

Written as a first person and third person narrative by Arthur Hastings, the story marks a different writing approach by Agatha Christie. From the outset, the story presents us with a possible killer. There is no evidence but only su
...more
Renata
Apr 06, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Between loving the recent movie Murder in the Orient Express and reading Anthony Horowitz’s Magpie Murders, I am once again enthralled by Agatha Christie’s mysteries.

I’m still smiling and feeling as smugly satisfied as Hercule himself at the way she thoroughly captivated me on so many levels in The A.B.C. Murders. A plot that felt comfortably yet intriguingly straight forward was anything but and I found myself muttering aloud several times until I exploded in laughter at her pulling the rug ou
...more
Susan
Aug 22, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is the thirteenth Poirot mystery, first published in 1936, which shows Agatha Christie really beginning to show what put her above the other mystery writers of the day. Within a year, she will write, “Death on the Nile,” and, indeed, her Poirot novels of the 1930’s include such titles as, “Murder on the Orient Express,” “Appointment with Death,” and other classics, which are Poirot’s Golden Age, within the Golden Age.

It is delightful to have Hastings back; visiting from Argentina. Always un
...more
Taylor
Even though The ABC Murders was entertaining, I was slightly underwhelmed.

It's strange, since Murder on the Orient Express impressed me so much. I had a blast reading it last year, and I knew immediately after finishing that I wasn't done with Hercule Poirot's mysteries.

Sadly, this book was only just alright to me. The mystery was intriguing, but I found the overall reveal to be slightly underwhelming. It was...sort of predictable? Poirot's charm was one of the aspects of this book that really k
...more
Natalie Richards
Jan 28, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: owned-book
Another enjoyable read from the master storyteller, that kept me guessing to the very end!
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36,199 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 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
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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)
“Words, madmoiselle, are only the outer clothing of ideas.” 189 likes
“It's like all those quiet people, when they do lose their tempers they lose them with a vengeance.” 138 likes
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