I had a little craving for nostalgia, for the times I would sit in the corner of a library and read all the books in the world, because I had all the time in the world. I used to love Christie, and “And then there were None” is one of my favourite murder-mystery novels.
However, “Murder on the Orient Express” was disappointing, even though I was assured by librarian it was one of her best selling books. Maybe I’ve outgrown it, but the characters, the story and the ending (especially the ending), were bland and unimaginative.
This book is like a minimum wage job- making you work hard with little intellectual effort, with a disappointing reward. There are at least 10 different characters in this book that are so thoroughly analysed, with a chapter for each of them. You give yourself to these characters, invest time to get to know them, understand them. It’s almost like a relationship. The names are difficult to pronounce, with Princess Natalia Dragomiroff taking the prize. The characters are clearly defined by their race and ethnicity with “Caucasian” coolness and Italian hot temperedness. But it almost seems worth it; After all, it’s an Agatha Christie novel.
Hercule Poirot, a smug, conceited (and racist) detective who’s been featured in a collection of his own novels by Chrsite, is the man who saves the day; in literally a day. He solves the mystery of the murder of an American businessman, Mr.Ratchett (who’s real name is Casetti- Why Agatha, why?). Due to the snowstorm that befalls the train, the murderer could not have left the train. And so, Poirot sets to find the murderer within the train.
It’s difficult to let one understand the emotions I’m going through right now, in this review, because the real disappointment of the book is the ending, I don’t want to be That Spoiler Blogger.
I guess all I can do is allow you to read the book and feel the defeat for yourself.
photo credit: <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/62276182@N00/2821350338″>Murder on the Orient Express</a> via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin</a> <a href=”https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/2.0/”>(license)</a>