Plot Summary: When Hercule Poirot receives an intriguing letter from a foreign millionaire, he sets out right away for the French countryside. But before he and Captain Hastings arrive the Monsieur Renauld is found dead on a golf course, stabbed in the back. Who could have done such a thing? Was it his son, who thought he stood to inherit millions? The neighbor woman thought to be his mistress? Or could it be the mysterious girl on the train who calls herself Cinderella? Soon another body is found dead in a similar manner, and everyone’s theories are thrown out the window…
My Book Review: Continuing my way through the Poirot series… 🙂
After finishing Agatha Christie’s first Poirot novel (The Mysterious Affair at Styles), I had a bit of a letdown. I was hoping the second installment in the series would be much more to my liking, and happily I got the suspense I was looking for! One of the things that really helped me to like this story better was the setting. A millionaire’s villa set in the French countryside really set the atmosphere and it was fun practicing my French accents!
I felt the plot was cleverly laid out and the details came together and made sense. What a marked improvement from The MA@S! There was a point nearing the end when I was afraid the story would end flat, but then came a plot twist that I didn’t foresee and Agatha proves she is the queen of mystery novels.
There are some elements within this book that I love about A.G.’s stories. One is her huge use of colorful dialogue and different characters. Another is of there being a backstory that happened years before the book starts, and you have to figure out which of the current characters are the same people under assumed names.
The only thing I didn’t like is that in this particular story, Poirot comes across as very conceited and arrogant. Sometimes his mood varies from book to book, but in this one he was not as likeable.
I’ve read a few Poirot mysteries, but plot-wise this was my favorite I’ve read so far. Not my favorite Christie mystery (that honor belongs for Why Didn’t They Ask Evans?), but it makes up for the letdown after The MA@S.