Tuesday, October 2, 2012

And then there were none

Author : Agatha Christie

    One of the best Agatha Christie novels that does not feature Hercule Poirot.  One does not expect literary master class from Agatha Christie, and that holds true for this novel too.  Suspense and thrill are her forte and the reader is on the edge till the end. Suspense and thrill lasts till the last page. The story is puzzle with an assortment of characters meeting in an Island. A book that can be read under three hours, perfect book for a rainy day. 

Set in 1950's, Ten people from various walks of life are invited by a mysterious millionaire Mr. U. N Owen to his Island. They arrive at the big house in the small island off the coast of England.The big house is empty except for the exceptional furnishings, and poems  framed in every room. A nursery poem on ten little Indian boys. But the Owens' are no where to be seen. No one else other than the ten guests, and the first murder occurs on the first day. A classic closed box situation.

Spoiler Alert :

  While at dinner on the first day, they hear a voice from the hall listing treacherous crimes committed by the guests. The voice turns out to be from a gramophone. Secrets begin to tumble, every one of them has an unaccounted murky past. They all have something to hide. They exchange stories and realize how they were elaborately duped to come to Mr.Owen's island, and they have no way back as the weather has turned ugly. Mr. U N Owen is an extrapolation of UNKNOWN.

 Little did they know that they are to be killed one by a predetermined order and manner.  There is no one  other than the ten guests in the island, and surely, the murderer must be one among them.

An interesting dialogue from the novel.

    "You could be cold in that thin dress."
    "Cold, I should be colder if I were dead"

In the words of  Vera, one of the ten guests, It is like some horrible child playing a game. And then there were none. A true page turner.

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