Book Review: Murder on the Orient Express

Murder on the Orient Express

Agatha Christie

Berkeley

336 Pages

Welcome to the Classics Tour stop highlighting The Golden Age of Detectives.  There are three reasons I read this book.

  1. -I bought it around this past Halloween after seeing it on a display there.
  2. -I have been meaning to read Agatha Christie for awhile now, so this tour was the perfect chance to do it.
  3. -I have been yearning to read mysteries for the past month now.

So you see, reading Murder on the Orient Express killed a lot of birds with one stone. 

First off, you should probably be aware that thus is a Hercule Poirot book, meaning that it centers around the detective by that name, also featured in many of Christie’s other works.  Hercule is traveling home after an investigation aboard the Orient Express when, all of a sudden, the train is brought to a halt, both literally and metaphorically.  You see, they are stopped by a huge blizzard around the same time as an American businessman is killed in his room.  It becomes apparent straight off that the killer has to be someone that is actually on the train.  Poirot is quickly appointed as the investigator of the murder and he sets forth searching the train as well as interviewing the other inhabitants.

Obviously I have no wish to spoil the storyline for you.  I will just say that a lot of strange clues are unearthed and the actual culprit was not whom I expected.  The one person whom I suspected almost straight off the bat seemed culpable from almost the beginning but at the same time I figured it would have been too easy had I discovered the killer straight off, so I figured I had been wrong. 

I think Christie does a great job of weaving together a good mystery, although I only have this one book to go by.  It was absolutely charming and a quick, engaging read.  It induced me to try to read more of Christie’s books, so I have reserved her very first book from my library, which I understand is also a Hercule Poirot book. 

Also, I discovered a fun Agatha Christie challenge! The Agatha Christie Reading Challenge  is a perpetual challenge hosted by Mysteries in Paradise and the goal is to read all of Christie’s books in the order in which they were written.  From what I understand, there are 87 books out there, of which I believe 60 some are actual novels while the rest are short story collections.  I very well could be wrong on this though.  Apparently she also wrote romance novels under the pseudonym Mary Westmacott, but whether those books are part of the challenge, I cannot say.  Either way, I do hope to read as many of Agatha Christie’s books as possible, although I plan to skip the short stories and the romances.

What about you?  Are you a fan of Christie’s?  If so, what books of hers are your favorites? 

Book Reviews:

A Library is a Hospital for the Mind . . .

Mysteries in Paradise

I bought this book from Barnes & Noble

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17 Responses

  1. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by New Book Reviews. New Book Reviews said: Book Review: Murder on the Orient Express: Murder on the Orient Express Agatha Christie Berkeley 33… http://bit.ly/c5eP0k #books #writing […]

  2. I read my first Agatha Christie mystery this year, The Pale Horse. I quite enjoyed it as a light, easy mystery. I had the same experience as you – I didn’t guess the culprit until the end either!

  3. I just read my first Agatha Christie last week, though my tour date is not until early June. I liked it, but the info-dump at the end was a bit wonky for me. I’m sure I’ll probably read another Christie in the future and it’ll probably be this one as it’s the one I’ve had recommended to me most often over the years. It’s supposed to be one of her best.

  4. I too thought she weaved the story together very well!!

  5. How lame am I? I’ve never read Agatha Christie. Gotta fix that!

  6. I think this is one of my favorite Christie books.

  7. I have only read two Christie books- this one and And Then There Were None. I thoroughly enjoyed both of them, but I haven’t read any others! However, I really enjoy the Miss Marple series on PBS, if that counts for anything 😉

  8. I’ve been a Christie fan since my mother took me to see the movie adaptation, which is still one of my favorites. I think I’ve read nearly all of them. A Pale Horse is another of my favorites, though it’s much later in her career.

  9. Christie is wonderful. I actually had never read her books either until not too long ago and I think Murder on the Orient Express might have been the first one for me too. I highly recommend The Murder of Roger Ackroyd. Such a good mystery.

  10. I’m not a huge Christie fan, but I did read lots of her books years ago, and I agree that she does a great job keeping her readers guessing. I think I only figured out whodunit in one of dozen or more books of hers that I read. I know I read this one at some point, but I don’t remember much about it.

  11. You’ll be missing out if you skip all of Christie’s short stories. In particular, there are two collections that contain detectives that don’t appear in any of her books – ‘The Mysterious Mr. Quin’ and ‘Parker Pyne, Detective’. Both of these books are great fun, and great for a quick read in between things.

  12. I have loved Hercule Poirot since my first reading. I actually don’t think I’ve read any Christie books that didn’t feature that wonderful man. I definitely recommending reading more Poirot!

  13. Oh! That challenge sounds fun! I love Christie’s novels, especially the ones with Hercule Poirot and Miss Marple.

  14. I’m so glad you enjoyed this book. I did too. I’m very fond of Miss Marple so, if I may suggest, you give her a try for you next Christie. Murder at the Vicarage was the first one she appears in. I also will encourage you to consider seriously the Agatha Christie Challenge. I’m in it and am gradually working my way through the books from the first to the last. I can definitely see her development as a writer.

  15. I’ll echo a couple of titles that have already been recommended: And Then There Were None and The Murder of Roger Ackroyd are top-notch!!

  16. I used to read a lot of Christie and this was one of my first of her books. Clearly I enjoyed it for me to keep reading them but I wouldn’t be able to recall it at all if it weren’t for the movie.

  17. Thanks for the link to the Christie challenge! Looks like a fun project for the summer- I’ve read them all, many several times, but never in the publication order.

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