All Columns in Alphabetical Order

Monday, May 10, 2021

#ReadThis @AgathaChristie @HarperCollins @Morrow_PB #DeathontheNile by #AgathaChristie #Seventeenth #17 #HerculePoirot #Mystery

We have always had simple taste.
We like the best.
Death on the Nile is THE BEST.
King of the Hill, Cream of the Crop, A number One.
The little town blues of lesser books melt away and cower in a corner compared to the absolute majesty of Death on the Nile. If you only have time to read one Agatha Christie right now, this is the one.  It's our seventeenth, as we are reading Poirot in order.

In her foreword, Agatha tells us she writes it after coming back from a winter in Egypt.  It reminds us of The Night Manager by John LeCarre; though this came long after Death on the Nile, written in 1937, it was first to us.  

When the sun shines, you cannot see the moon.

The grey cells are at their most ferocious: it is most essential to deduce character.
"Une qui aime at un qui se laisse amier.  Yes, I wonder too..." (p. 16)
That can get you in a lot of trouble: one who loves, and one who is loved!

Conflict galore in American Trustees versus Carmichael, Grant and Carmichael, attorneys.  You'll find the timeless vendor lingo on page 39 hilarious if you ever have seen the streetside counterfeit vendors of New York-nearly 100 years later and across the ocean they essentially sound the same.  Twenty-one years after Death on the Nile is published, Truman Capote writes about Holly Golightly and the mean reds: Linnet Doyle has them first in Death on the Nile on page 93.  "Monsieur Poirot, I'm afraid-I'm afraid of everything.  I've never felt like this before.  All these wild rocks and the awful grimness and starkness.  Where are we going?  What's going to happen?  I'm afraid, I tell you.  Everyone hates me.  I've never felt like that before.  I've always been nice to people-I've done things for them - and they hate me - lots of people hate me.  Except for Simon, I'm surrounded by enemies...It's terrible to feel - that there are people who hate you."  For everyone alive today, anxiety is something that has been front and center and as the central character, Linnet will give you lots of company in this regard!  You won't find 5th avenue and 57 on the Nile so what does Linnet do to address her anxiety?  Read and find out.

When cataracts are discussed, don't let your eyes deceive you.  There are six cataracts of the Nile: a cataract is a shallow length.  We believe on page 164 B.F. means Bloody Fool and maybe we will have to add that to our vocabulary.  Colorful character permeate the pages from the literarily-motivated Mrs. Otterbourne who declares sex is the pivot of the universe (p.48) to the sun and the moon.  We'll let you figure out what people they match!  Colonel Race returns: you remember him from Cards on the Table.  Christie bowls us over when she refers to Miss Van Schuyler "seated in her usual corner.  She looked even more arrogant than usual.  She was knitting." (p. 275) We know we have yarn-enthused readers and have even reviewed knitting and crochet books.

We are almost scared to see the movie when it comes out as we are afraid any movie at all won't be as good as the book.  But we absolutely do want to see the movie and P.S. Kenneth Branagh why do we not see Cornelia Robson, the girl from Connecticut living in Manhattan cast?  We certainly hope she is in it and if you are looking to fill the role, guess who is most available to fill it and does not even have to try to be from Connecticut and live in Manhattan because it is the truth.  Note to the readers: Bellfield is not a real town in Connecticut.

Poirot says all is not the gold that glitters (p. 43); why would the rich man take the poor man's one ewe lamb?   Do not open your heart to evil.   Quite a lot of maxims come to the forefront that of course you already know - but you have not seen these specific well-illustrated examples.  Poirot is not for hire: he cannot be bought.  Disaster in all its opulence is just the ticket, and even Poirot can't escape with his ever-so-magically-enhanced wine.  Layers upon layers of intrigue will make it completely impossible for you to guess every action and reaction that total up to exactly what is up on the Nile.

Don't deprive yourself of the opportunity to be brilliantly transported back to a more beautiful way of travel where murder has never been so cunning.  Splash. Bang. Boom.  Clear away the extraneous matter and seek the truth!
Give up the past.
Turn to the future.
Open this book and get started!

Death on the Nile has Earned Our Highest Recommendation.

Previously on Whom You Know, we have raved about Agatha:

The Mysterious Affair at Styles

Murder on the Links

Poirot Investigates

The Murder of Roger Ackroyd

The Big Four

The Mystery of the Blue Train

Peril at End House

Lord Edgware Dies

Murder on the Orient Express

Three Act Tragedy

and we took a break from only him and did him with others in Midwinter Murder

and returned to only him with Death in the Clouds

The ABC Murders

Murder in Mesopotamia

Cards on the Table

Murder in the Mews

Dumb Witness

About the Author
Agatha Christie is the most widely published author of all time and in any language, outsold only in the Bible and Shakespeare. Her books have sold more than a billion copies in English and another billion in a hundred foreign languages. She is the author of eighty crime novels and short-story collections, around thirty plays, two memoirs, and six novels written under the name Mary Westmacott

She first tried her hand at detective fiction while working in a hospital dispensary during World War I, creating the now-legendary Hercule Prior with her debut novel, The Mysterious Affair at Styles. In 1930, Miss Jane Marple made her first full-length novel appearance in The Murder at the Vicarage, quickly becoming another beloved and enduring character to rival Poirot's popularity. Additional series characters include the husband-and wife crime-fighting team of Tommy and Tuppence Beresford, private investigator Parker Pyne, and Scotland Yard detectives Superintendent Battle and Inspector Japp.

Many of Christie's novels and short stories were adapted into plays, films, and television series. The Mousetrap opened in 1952 and is the longest running play in history. Academy Award-nominated actor and director Kenneth Branagh helmed the acclaimed major motion picture Murder on the Orient Express in 2017 and its sequel, Death on the Nile, starring in both films as the Belgian detective. On the small screen Poirot has been most memorably portrayed by David Suchet, and Miss Marple by Joan Hickson and subsequently Geraldine McEwan and Julia McKenzie.

Christie was first married to Archibald Christie and then to archaeologist Sir Max Mallowan, whom she accompanied on expeditions to countries that would also serve as the settings for many of her novels. In 1971 she achieved one of Britain's highest honors when she was made a Dame of the British Empire. She died in 1976 at the age of eighty-five. The one-hundred-year anniversary of Agatha Christie stories and the debut of Hercule Poirot was celebrated around the world in 2020. Whom You Know will never stop celebrating it!

Back to TOP