Overview (No Spoilers):
With all the buzz generated from the Murder on the Orient Express movie last year I was intrigued to pick up this classic 1934 Agatha Christie detective novel. I’m almost certain that the Murder on the Orient Express was my first Christie novel. Knowing little to nothing about this prolific British writer, I looked up her biography following this read and found her life story to be fascinating from her mother’s unique learning philosophies to Christie’s unexplained eleven day disappearance. Detective novels are not a genre I typically frequent or choose on my own accord, however it is always beneficial for your literary health to pick up reads that are outside your comfort zone. The Murder on the Orient Express definitely keeps the reader guessing as to the guilty party right up until the end. Unfortunately, due to the isolated nature of the murder taking place on a snow bound train the narrative takes a leisurely slow pace as our Detective Hercule Poirot methodically interviews the occupants over and over and over again. I’d suspected the outcome early, however dismissed the solution as too fantastical. Regardless, despite the deliberate progression of this read, the weaving together of the various personalities and clues until the final reveal couldn’t help but to pique to readers intrigue. Overall, the Murder on the Orient Express holds true against the test of time as a detective read that will keep readers guessing until the shocking end.
Additional Insight (Spoilers Abound):
- How would the murder and investigation had played out sans snow storm or Detective Hercule Poirot just happening to be an occupant of the train?
- How different this story would be in a modern light where cell phones and such would be readily available to fact check the people?
- Why was the Doctor or Detective never suspected?
- Why leave any evidence behind by the body?
- How convenient the one small piece of note Poirot is able to read has Daisy Armstrong’s name on it? Why send the notes anyway and let Ratchett know he is being hunted?