Friday, July 17, 2015

Murder in Retrospect by Agatha Christie (also published as Five Little Pigs)

Reviewed by: Michal, the mom (does age matter?)

I loved Agatha Christie in my teens and read everything that my local library had by her. I have no idea if this was one that I read-- it likely was, but my memory for such things is not good enough to spoil this mystery a second time around (20+ years later)! Hercule Poirot does not disappoint. I recommend Christie's mysteries for high school and up. They are never graphic or crude and I love trying to unravel the mystery along with Poirot or Miss Marple.

Genre: Murder mystery

Setting: 1940's England


Private detective Hercule Poirot is contacted by a young woman to investigate a murder that happened 16 years before, when she was a child. Her father was poisoned and her mother convicted to die, but her mother, on her deathbed, claimed to be innocent. The daughter wants to know the truth. Poirot must recreate the murder so many years after the fact and find out who the real murderer is.

Themes: family history, loyalty, everyone's perspective is a bit different, but if you hear them all then a clear picture will form

Recommended Age: 14 and up

Full Disclosure:

A large part of this case involves infidelity-- not just one love affair, but a habit of infidelity by one character (the murder victim). There is never anything graphic or specific in nature, only references to love affairs. Although some of the characters dismiss this behavior as to be expected from "a man like him", the book does not portray his affairs in a favorable light-- and as it made his family suffer and eventually cost him his life, I feel like there are consequences to his actions that are on par with reality. To me it makes a difference if poor choices are shown to have consequences and not portrayed as a way to happiness.

Rating: 4 stars

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