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Review: “And Then There Were None” by Agatha Chrisite

By Appraisingpages @appraisjngpages

Hey guys! My name is CJ, and I am stoked to be a contributor here are Appraising Pages with these lovely ladies! I am almost 26, have a BA in History with a minor in English. I am borderline obsessed with Doctor Who, Sherlock, Cassandra Clare, and Neil Gaiman. I am married and have an adorable baby boy. I run a book blog over at The Book Boozer, and also run an Etsy shop at Night&Day.

ATTWN

“Oh! I agree. Wife murder is perfectly possible- almost natural, let’s say! But not this particular kind!”

This was my first time picking up a Agatha Christie mystery, and let me tell you, there is a reason Christie is a classic. She didn’t dissapoint. Here is the summary from goodreads:

First, there were ten – a curious assortment of strangers summoned as weekend guests to a private island off the coast of Devon. Their host, an eccentric millionaire unknown to all of them, is nowhere to be found. All that the guests have in common is a wicked past they’re unwilling to reveal – and a secret that will seal their fate. For each has been marked for murder. One by one they fall prey. Before the weekend is out, there will be none. And only the dead are above suspicion.

Sound familiar? Maybe it resembles your favorite childhood board game? Or a beloved Tim Curry film? Well, you’re only kinda right. I absolutely love the movie Clue. My husband just groans everytime it pops up on our Amazon video because he knows I will want to watch it. Like a good man, he let’s me :). So, when this book was suggested in my book club last month, I was instantly excited. However, I have had a bad run with old classics, so I was also a little weary. I didn’t want to hate it. Thankfully, I found myself left with a different problem. Now, I’m just obsessed with Agatha Christie.

It’s always hard to write reviews of mysteries because you don’t want to give away too much. Even non-spoilery things might reveal a bit too much. So, I’m going to keep it to character development and writing style in hopes that you can go into this novel with as much of a blank slate as I did.

Christie opens up the novel by jumping right into character descriptions. Yes, all ten of them. Back to back. It was actually pretty overwhelming. A friend of mine made seriously the most genius solution to this problem. If you are reading this on ebook, highlight the intros to each character. That way, when they are all meeting each other later on and you find yourself wondering which one was the teacher, which one was the judge, you just jump into your notes and they will all be right there! If you are reading the actual paper book, you can obviously just flip back and forth. If you choose to do neither of these things, that’s totally fine because quickly the characters become pretty defined, and also they start to die quickly as well. Leaving you with fewer characters to get to know.

The deeper you get into the novel, the more involved you become with each character. Keep in mind, each of these characters are the main character. There is no single protagonist, they are all equally involved. Guys, do you know how hard that is to pull off? Some authors struggle to make their protagonist as developed as they should be, and Christie did it with TEN CHARACTERS. I didn’t feel like there were any character holes, or things that didn’t add up. It was all done perfectly.

Christie’s writing style is the definition of timeless. If it wasn’t for outdated phrases being used, I wouldn’t even be able to tell that this book was published in 1939. With older novels, I tend to get bored because I feel like the writing style of that time is just so wordy. Writing for the sake of writing, when I just want to get to the nitty gritty. Christie writes every single word with purpose. She weaves this mystery perfectly, so you constantly think that you have it figured out, just to circle around and bite you. I can tell you with total confidence that you will not be able to figure out who the culprit is, until she tells you. She is in total control of the story and your emotions the entire time, everything you have ever wanted in a murder mystery.

If you can’t already tell, I fully recommend that you read And Then There Were None. What I recommend even more, is that you make sure you read the Epilogue and following documents. Seriously. Or else you will probably hate this book and never read any Agatha Christie novels ever again :).


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