Published: May 1923
Publisher: (No idea. Can’t find it in the e-book edition and in Goodreads as well.)
Belgian detective Hercule Poirot is summoned to France after receiving a distressing letter with a urgent cry for help. Upon his arrival in Merlinville-sur-Mer, the investigator finds the man who penned the letter, the South American millionaire Monsieur Renauld, stabbed to death and his body flung into a freshly dug open grave on the golf course adjoining the property. Meanwhile the millionaire’s wife is found bound and gagged in her room. Apparently, it seems that Renauld and his wife were victims of a failed break-in, resulting in Renauld’s kidnapping and death.
There’s no lack of suspects: his wife, whose dagger served as the weapon; his embittered son, who would have killed for independence; and his mistress, who refused to be ignored – and each felt deserving of the dead man’s fortune. The police think they’ve found the culprit. But Poirot has his doubts. Why is the dead man wearing an overcoat that is too big for him? And who was the impassioned love-letter in the pocket for? Before Poirot can answer these questions, the case is turned upside down by the discovery of a second, identically murdered corpse…
I am determined to give Agatha Christie a chance by reading the second book in Hercule Poirot Mystery series. This is so much better than the first one but I still think that the Queen of Mystery is not yet justified with this book.
I recalled that the thing that I hated the most in the first book is the characters. With this book, Hasting kinda revived himself with not being as ignorant as he used to be in the first book. And we finally get to see Poirot’s line of thinking and his method of solving the case as he finally explains a lot of what’s going on to Hasting. However, Hasting’s redemption is not enough. He was still annoying and his attraction to girls is cringy at best. He gets attracted to every pretty girl that he met.
Plotwise, it is much better than the first one. The investigation and the revelation is much more engaging. However, the plot is quite predictable in a way that you know that it is not over yet. Given that the author has already used the trick of presenting a culprit then presenting another and doing it again in this book kinda lost its touch of surprise. I already expected it when they presented a culprit and I already know that it is not over yet.
I am a little hopeful with this series still and I am planning to continue this series. But if the elements of how the plot played out would be the same in the 3rd and 4th book and if Hasting would remain to be the annoying narrator in each story, then I guess I will not be continuing on with this series.
That’s all for this review. Do share your thoughts on Agatha Christie’s book as I would love to know.
Till next time!