Thursday, August 28, 2008

Book Report/Death on the Nile

Death on the Nile
by Agatha Christie
unabridged audio read by David Suchet
mystery, 1937
finished, 8/23/08

My love for Agatha Christie grows exponentially with each new book I read. And herein lies the best, best thing about book challenges. Without Joy's Anything Agatha Challenge, I'd still know the work of Christie only through the Miss Marple television programs, which starred the late Joan Hickson. Now, a whole new world has opened up, and I could spend a year reading just Agatha Christie books, and feel happy.

Death on the Nile is a Hercule Poirot mystery. Mr. Poirot takes a little trip down the famous river, and wouldn't you know it, there's a murder. Before the murder occurs, we meet several of his fellow passengers, not knowing just which one will end up dead. There are several solutions to the mystery which Hercule Poirot offers toward the end of the book. He shows us that any number of things may have happened, but didn't. This was a terrific device because in this manner he tied up several loose ends the reader wonders about.

Agatha Christie and Dorothy L. Sayers were masters at characterization, and the psychology behind their characters. The 'why' is important. Very modern for all those years ago.

This audio of Death on the Nile was very special because it was read by David Suchet, the man who portrays Hercule Poirot in the excellent television productions. His reading was amazing because he went so smoothly between Poirot's accent, the straight narration, and all the other characters.

Mary Dell in the Daily Mirror of November 11, 1937 said, "Agatha Christie is just grand. Usually if you get a good plot there is something wrong with the writing or the characters. But with her – you have everything that makes a first-class book."


  1. Funny, I'm only familiar with Poirot and not with Miss Marple. :) I'm glad to hear the audio version was a good one - I'm almost finished with the audio books I have in my car, and this will be a great one to pick up next.

  2. I love Joan Hickson as Miss Marple but don't really like the books. A far better lady detective, in my opinion, is Miss Silver, in the series by Patricia Wentworth. Also a knitter, Maud Silver is a professional 'private enquiry agent' and former governess and she's great!
    Re Death on the Nile. We spent a year in Egypt in the late 70s when the children were small as my husband was on a contract there, and we had a magical (and scary/hairy) trip to Luxor and Aswan, staying in The Old Winter Palace hotel, featured in the Peter Ustinov film - Death on the Nile. (Lovely hotel if you're in that neck of the woods, though my recommendation is, of necessity, 30 years old!)

  3. Nan thank you for the comment on my journal. I am pleased to know the name of this flower. Just always referred to it as a spider lily. I will put "The Poet of Tolstoy Park" on my book purchase list. When I am not dreaming, I know this home and garden is all I can handle. But then "never" is not a part of my vocabulary.
    Have a great day. You will never know what an inspiration your journal is to me.

  4. I love anything Agatha wrote. Her books were what got me through the summers during my junior high and high school years. They were just suspenseful enough to carry me through to the end in a day or two, but not scary enough to give me nightmares.
    Thank you for leaving that wonderful quote on my blog! I love that. In fact, I am going to copy it and frame it for my kitchen. :) It is absolutely perfect!

  5. Nan, I love all the Agatha Christie books! Check out my blog I awarded you the Super Commenter Award!

  6. I love your masthead photo's, Nan... especially today's clothesline photograph.

  7. Years ago, when I was reading all of the Agatha books I could find, I read a fascinating biography. Don't remember the name, but it has been probably 30 years, and I imagine there have been several written since then. I'm putting Dame Agatha back on my biography list.

  8. I'm so pleased that you are enjoying the Christie books. They have been such favorites of mine for so many years. DEATH ON THE NILE is lovely, isn't it?

  9. I think Agatha gets dismissed way too often because she appears to be familiar. But her books are wonderful! This is one of the best!

  10. A year with Agatha Christie would be a life well spent.

    She is, well, remarkable.


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