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Agatha Christie's ginius for detective fiction is unparalleled. Her worldwide popularity is phenomenal, her characters engaging, her plots spellbinding. No one knows the human heart—or the dark passions that can stop it—better than Agatha Christie. She is truly the one and only Queen of Crime.

The Murder Of Roger Ackroyd

Village rumor hints that Mrs. Ferrars poisoned her husband, but no one is sure. Then there's another victim in a chain of death. Unfortunately for the killer, master sleuth Hercule Poirot takes over the investigation.

Topics: Inheritance, Private Investigators, Blackmail, Murder, Family, Death, Suspenseful, Series, 1920s, England, Village, First Person Narration, 20th Century, Female Author, and British Author

Published: HarperCollins on
ISBN: 9780061763403
List price: $9.99
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I cut my mystery book teeth on Agatha Chrisite. I had read this one many years (decades?) ago, and remembered very little. This was the April choice for the library mystery book club. We agreed that we found this one a bit tedious at times with the amount of minutiae and details. It had very interesting character developments. Good clues were given throughout and summarized a couple times, and there wasn't anything hidden at the end, even though the murderer was a surprise. POSSIBLE SPOILER - I found the timetable of the murder and the alabis of the suspects, that Poirot developed, a little difficult to buy. Every suspect was able to account for their time, up to the minute, for the 60-90 minutes surrounding the murder. Of the eight or so persons involved, would they really know their whereabouts and exact times. Wrist watches were just becoming popular in the 1920s (this was written in 1926)and pocket watches were most popular at that time. It's hard imagine someone looking at their watch, wrist or pocket, at the exact time they knocked on Ackroyd's study door, and then again looking at their watch at the moment they left the study to go upstairs, then again the moment they entered their bedroom, and then again when they came downstairs to go to the kitchen. This annoyance aside, I enjoyed this. I will continue to read and re-read more of Christie.more
James Sheppard, medico di una cittadina, è la voce narrante di questo romanzo.Come dice il titolo stesso, Roger Ackroyd morirà, e solo la fortunata coincidenza di avere Poirot nella città porterà alla soluzione del caso.Soluzione come sempre sorprendente e, almeno fino alle ultime pagine, inaspettata.---James Sheppard, doctor of a small town, is the narrator of this novel.As the title says, Roger Ackroyd has to die, and only the lucky presence of Hercule Poirot in town will bring the solution of the murder.A quite surprising solution and, at least until the last pages, unexpected.more
I really didn't expect to enjoy this as much as I did. I mean, I like crime/mystery fiction, especially as something to take a break from literature or heart-breaking stuff (Guy Gavriel Kay, I'm looking at you). But I didn't expect to like Agatha Christie's writing so much. This first exposure to her work is due to my Crime Fiction class, which now I'm really excited about, and I'm probably going to look out for more.

It was cleverer than I expected. I'm generally able to guess the plot and motivations and all of that, no matter what kind of fiction I'm reading, but Agatha Christie's pretty good at misdirection. I think I did get there before the reveal -- but only a little!

I liked the way she described things and set up characters. I particularly liked the character of Caroline, somehow, though I can't put my finger on why. She was an essentially good-hearted busybody. The narrative voice is wonderful, misleading you so well without ever seeming to.

I wasn't actually that interested in Poirot himself. I found him a little irritating, actually, and I don't particularly feel the need for the next Agatha Christie book I read to be another with him in it.

I hope I have this good an experience with all of the crime fiction on my list!more
Christie is such fun and this made for good escapist reading.more
Excellent! Truly surprising and classic. The audiobook is especially fun... take on your next road trip.  more
Hastings has unapologetically disappeared from the the series! Poirot has retired to the countryside to garden; but the death of a local woman sets off a domino cascade of intrigue. We're not counting teacups (cf The Mysterious Affair at Styles); but we are to keep watch on the time! Robin Bailey is spot on as the village doctor from whose point of view the story is told.

Redacted from the original blog review at dog eared copy, Hercule Poirot Mysteries (1-4): Mini Op-Ed Reviews, 10/10/2011more
Audiobook. Very short, but good. The sound effects and narration were top notch. The story was well done.more
A great story and a well-written narrative. This is only the 3rd or 4th Poirot book (third in publishing order), but it takes place after Hastings has stopped sleuthing with Poirot. Poirot speaks warmly about his little friend throughout and clearly misses him, which is all the more meaningful having read some of the books developing this friendship which haven't even been written yet.more
I'll say right off the bat that it's impossible for me to give Agatha Christie's "The Murder of Roger Ackroyd" a fair rating.You see, I was absolutely obsessed with Christie's books in junior high and read everyone I could get my hands on. Flash forward more decades than I'd like to admit and I saw that "The Murder of Roger Ackroyd" was on the list of 1,001 books to read before you die. One of the covers looked somewhat familiar, so I may have read it before, and in my attempt to figure out whether I did, I read a review that revealed the ending in its very first sentence. Ugh.So throughout this reading, I knew the ultimate answer to the mystery... I may have given this a higher rating if I hadn't. That said, Christie is a genius at laying down clues and then quite furiously explaining why those clues don't matter at all. Interesting, that I have no real recollection of this book, though I feel sure I read it. I wouldn't count it among my favorite Christie stories, as her best, in my opinion is "And Then There Were None." I get why it's on the 1,001 list but feel like other Christie novels are more deserving.At any rate, I enjoyed the book, for both nostalgic and literary reasons.more
Gossip is the major sport in the small village of King's Abbot with very little in the way of exciting topics. But when Roger Ackroyd is found murdered in the his study, speculation goes wild. The main suspect is Ackroyd's stepson, Ralph, but when Ralph's fiance approaches Hercule Poirot who has been living in quiet retirement in the village, M. Poirot agrees to discover the whole truth.An absolute delight from start to finish. Christie's prose is sharp and witty, clearly evoking the period of the late 1920s in a small village with one large manor house. The characters are all well-rounded creatures whom it is easy to picture and Hercule Poirot sparkles as the understated Belgian detective with his peculiar approach to English and his emphasis on the power of "the little grey cells." But the big star of this novel is the mystery itself which is absolutely brilliant. I defy you to determine whodunnit.more
Take my advice: DO NOT READ ANY REVIEWS BEFORE READING THIS BOOK. Thankfully, I had forgotten what I had read about this book in the past, so my reading experience was phenomenal. You really do not want to be spoiled, a state that is particularly difficult to avoid if you try to dig up much about this book. Agatha is queen, and this is one of her best. That is all you need (and want) to know!more
I hadn't read an Agatha Christie novel since my mid-teens, and I was quite prepared to find this book old-fashioned and trite. To my delighted surprise, the writing is crisp and occasionally tongue-in-cheek, with some great characters, amongst which Poirot in great form (Maggie Smith should be cast as Mrs. Ackroyd if a film is made of this book). As a detective novel, it is a tour de force - saying more would be a spoiler.more
Abridged on three CDs, and read by Nigel Anthony. A famous Poirot story, but one I'd never read before. Beautifully pulled off, although I suspect it suffers a little from the abridgement. Even with the abridgement issues, I loved this. And that's all I'm going to say about it.more
Wow... Now that was a real surprise at the end!I generally like Agatha Christie novels, and have read quite a number of them, but I had never read this one yet. I really liked it, it keeps you guessing every time some new piece of evidence is found, and in the end, I still had no clue. Very skillfully done and well-written.more
Best Christie ever....I actually figured out the ending...more
I'm starting to get a bit worried about my memory. I'm pretty sure I read all of Agatha Christie's books as a teenager, and I've definitely watched various TV versions multiple times, and yet the dénouements keep coming as a surprise to me. And in this case I'm glad of it, because it would have been a completely different experience reading the book if I'd known who the murderer was.This is the only one of Christie's books on the 1001 Books to Read Before You Die list. I can absolutely see why - it's a beautifully constructed mystery, very imaginative, and doubtless a huge influence on the genre - but is it really better than, say, Murder On The Orient Express? I'm not convinced.more
When I pick up something by Agatha Christie, I know it's going to be good. The narrator is instantly fascinating, especially as he describes his investigations with the fastidious little Belgian (who the narrator hilariously thinks is a hairdresser upon meeting!). I wish I had counted the number of times "little grey cells" appeared in this book - far more than the other Poirot mysteries I have read!more
I've been a Christie fan since 8th grade and have read them all so many times that I always remember whodunit. Nevertheless, I find them a relaxing and enjoyable read when I'm taking a break from more weighty fiction. This is one of the finest examples of the genre- I still remember being shocked at the murderer the first time I read this book. Hercule Poirot was certainly on his game when he tackled this country house mystery. Though Hastings and Inspector Japp were absent, it was delightful to get a fresh perspective on Poirot from the narrator, a country doctor with an inquisitive sister. Certainly an excellent read for any mystery fan, and an excellent introduction to Christie for the uninitiated.more
the best novel of agatha Christie. she had inspired a lot of writer with her style such as JD Carr. it has to be in your library. When she discloses the murderer and the motive it is the book's crux as the reader is completely surprised. great book.more
I was stunned when I realized who the killer had to be.more
Of all the Agatha Christie books I've read--of all the mystery books I've read, there are three with such jaw-dropping resolutions that you want to scream, "I don't believe she did that!" One is And Then There Were None, another is Murder on the Orient Express and the third is The Murder of Roger Ackroyd. Of the three, this is the one I was tempted to read again immediately upon finishing to make sure Christie played fair--she did. One thing that struck me on reread was not only how smoothly this was written--it's first person and that's important--but also how much humor there is, despite it being a murder mystery. Although certainly there are aspects to detective Hercule Poirot's personality that lend itself to comedy. This is a perfect puzzle box tale, a classic "locked room" mystery in a country manor complete with butler. The kind of mystery Raymond Chandler in an essay naming Christie complained were "contrived" and "arid formula." Literary critic Edmund Wilson even wrote an essay attacking mysteries titled "Who Cares Who Killed Roger Ackroyd?" Go ahead and sniff disdainfully at me if you like for my rating of a full five stars. It's not Dostoevsky with complex characters and profound thoughts on the human condition(tm) but it's entertaining and clever and there's good reason it's been in print for over 80 years. (And I like it a hell of a lot more than Chandler's The Big Sleep.)more
Best Christie ever....I actually figured out the ending...more
This was the first ever Agatha Christie book I've ever read and I am a bit mixed on it. I find it hard to fairly judge the older mysteries because all the things and tropes we take for granted now were brand new and not always worked out then.I found this book very hard to get into at first, until after about the first 100 or so pages, which is when the Poirot character actually started to become more involved in the story and it focused less and less on the first characters introduced and they actually started working on solving the mystery. That is the point where I started to get engaged in the story and it started to be fun.I thought the mystery was well handled and once I thought about the conclusion I can see how it got there, often surprise endings feel like a cheat where corners are cut and things happen off stage as it were so you had no chance to see it coming, not so in this case. When you look back, the pieces were all there.I enjoyed this one well enough, and I really enjoyed Poirot's character so I will happily give more of the books a try.more
One of my favorite Christie books, not so much for Poirot's detection skills, but for its classic ending. This time around was my second reading of this book, and knowing the ending, it was still fun watching the solution to this rather baffling crime unravel. Because of the nature of the story, I can't really give an in-depth summary here. If you decide to read this book, believe me, you'll thank me later. In the quiet English village of King's Abbot, Roger Ackroyd, as the title suggests, ends up murdered in the study of his home Fernly Park. As it just so happens, Poirot is in the village, staying in the house next door to Dr. Sheppard (the narrator) and his sister Caroline, where he spends his days growing vegetable marrows. Dr. Sheppard believes his new neighbor is a hairdresser, based on the evidence of Poirot's moustache. But Poirot reveals his true colors as he gets down to the business of Ackroyd's murder, using his "little gray cells" to comb through the staggering amount of red herrings and a number of suspects in the case. There are also a number of humorous moments throughout. An entire chapter is devoted to a rather crazy mah-jong game where the players share their own theories about the case in between calling out plays. And at one point, one of the suspects calls Poirot a "little foreign cock duck," and I swear I heard the voice of John Cleese in my head, as the epithet reminded me of that scene in Monty Python and the Holy Grail where the French knights mercilessly taunt King Arthur and his men ("your mother was a hamster and your father smelled of elderberries"). But on the serious side, I have to say that this second reading provided me with a deeper appreciation for Christie's attention to minute detail -- as even little things turn out to be important in this book.The Murder of Roger Ackroyd is one of Christie's best works, with an ending you won't soon forget. It's a definite must read in the Christie canon and one of my personal favorites.more
I had read this murder mystery in the mid-80's and remember it had made a very strong impression on me at the time. Roger Ackroyd, a very wealthy man living in the small town of King's Abbot is found murdered in his study. Hercule Poirot, who has just moved to King's Abbot to retire out of the public eye, is asked to investigate. He takes on Doctor Shepperd, the town physician, one of the last people to have seen Ackroyd alive, and the narrator of the story as his associate. There was something very comforting about the storytelling, but it had been decades since I'd read anything by Dame Christie and I couldn't help thinking of the game of Clue every time a butler or a maid or a Major or a Colonel or poison, daggers or jewels were mentioned, which very much amused me, but was also too distracting to allow me to enjoy the ride as much as I had the first time around. The relatively low rating this time around is more a reflection of my own idiosyncrasy as I would still highly recommend this great classic.more
This was my second Agatha Christie novel, after being completely absorbed by And Then There Were None. My new favorite is... I can't say. Both are landmarks of the mystery genre and still talked about to this day, and for me, both were impossible to put down. The early 20th century British prose is a treat, and there's a delight in enjoying stories that so many writers after Christie are influenced by.I never guessed who murdered Roger Ackroyd until Monsieur Poirot was ready to reveal the right clues. The last couple of chapters were a stunning revelation!more
Supposedly one of Christie's masterpieces, but I wasn't that impressed. It features Poirot, who unfortunetly I've never really got on with as well as Christie's other detectives. Rather than her usual invisible narrator style this is told very much in the frist person through the eyes of one Dr. Sheppard. He is GP to a fairly typical small English 1930s village. He lives with his sister an incurable, and unrepentant gossip. A husband dies in the village, and about a year later the wife commits suicide. Shortly after this Dr Sheppard is invited to the local Squires house for dinner. By the time he returns home it is discovered that Roger Ackroyd (the squire) has been killed. The daughter soon brings in the "famous foreign detective, who retired here last year" to help prove that her recently announced fiancee wasn't involved. Poirot lives next door to Dr Sheppard and so the good Dr gets to follow (in Watson like fashion) the detectives footsteps.Poirot's mannerisms are already annoying. Maybe this would have worked better if I'd followed the series from the start, but unlike Chrisities other characters these seem somewhat effected and distract from the story line. Much of the rest is quite interesting, especially the depiciton of typical 30s life. The long Mah Jog section will be confusing to anyone who hasn't played the game - and it is surprising to me that it was so well known then to be left unexplained, expecting the reader to be familiar with the terms.I didn't liek the conclusion, Poirot's suggestion, or the manner in which it was achieved.more
This would be a good starting place for someone unfamiliar with Christie's works. It is one of the Hercule Poirot detective stories; I hadn't read any of them before and therefore can say that it doesn't seem to have a negative effect reading this one out of sequence. (It did make me want to read more of the series though!) The story is set in a small English village where gossip is the favored pasttime and nothing much of significance ever really happens; however, the village inhabitants are stunned when two mysteries unfold at once: one involving blackmail and a suicide, and the other involving murder. Hercule Poirot, who has just moved to the village to retire, is irresistibly pulled into the intrigue and starts to investigate. He is aided by the village doctor, Dr. Sheppard, who narrates the tale. It's been a long time since I was completely absorbed in a mystery, and this delivered that deliciously maddening desire to have to know- right now-- who done it? It's difficult to put it down once started, and the ending was nothing short of nail-biting shock. Christie is a master at keeping the reader guessing and then delivering an emotionally stunning wrap-up of her tale. This one kept me on the edge of my seat, and I can't wait to read more of her novels.more
One of Hercule Poirot novels, very meticulously designed and extremely entertaining.more
Read all 73 reviews

Reviews

I cut my mystery book teeth on Agatha Chrisite. I had read this one many years (decades?) ago, and remembered very little. This was the April choice for the library mystery book club. We agreed that we found this one a bit tedious at times with the amount of minutiae and details. It had very interesting character developments. Good clues were given throughout and summarized a couple times, and there wasn't anything hidden at the end, even though the murderer was a surprise. POSSIBLE SPOILER - I found the timetable of the murder and the alabis of the suspects, that Poirot developed, a little difficult to buy. Every suspect was able to account for their time, up to the minute, for the 60-90 minutes surrounding the murder. Of the eight or so persons involved, would they really know their whereabouts and exact times. Wrist watches were just becoming popular in the 1920s (this was written in 1926)and pocket watches were most popular at that time. It's hard imagine someone looking at their watch, wrist or pocket, at the exact time they knocked on Ackroyd's study door, and then again looking at their watch at the moment they left the study to go upstairs, then again the moment they entered their bedroom, and then again when they came downstairs to go to the kitchen. This annoyance aside, I enjoyed this. I will continue to read and re-read more of Christie.more
James Sheppard, medico di una cittadina, è la voce narrante di questo romanzo.Come dice il titolo stesso, Roger Ackroyd morirà, e solo la fortunata coincidenza di avere Poirot nella città porterà alla soluzione del caso.Soluzione come sempre sorprendente e, almeno fino alle ultime pagine, inaspettata.---James Sheppard, doctor of a small town, is the narrator of this novel.As the title says, Roger Ackroyd has to die, and only the lucky presence of Hercule Poirot in town will bring the solution of the murder.A quite surprising solution and, at least until the last pages, unexpected.more
I really didn't expect to enjoy this as much as I did. I mean, I like crime/mystery fiction, especially as something to take a break from literature or heart-breaking stuff (Guy Gavriel Kay, I'm looking at you). But I didn't expect to like Agatha Christie's writing so much. This first exposure to her work is due to my Crime Fiction class, which now I'm really excited about, and I'm probably going to look out for more.

It was cleverer than I expected. I'm generally able to guess the plot and motivations and all of that, no matter what kind of fiction I'm reading, but Agatha Christie's pretty good at misdirection. I think I did get there before the reveal -- but only a little!

I liked the way she described things and set up characters. I particularly liked the character of Caroline, somehow, though I can't put my finger on why. She was an essentially good-hearted busybody. The narrative voice is wonderful, misleading you so well without ever seeming to.

I wasn't actually that interested in Poirot himself. I found him a little irritating, actually, and I don't particularly feel the need for the next Agatha Christie book I read to be another with him in it.

I hope I have this good an experience with all of the crime fiction on my list!more
Christie is such fun and this made for good escapist reading.more
Excellent! Truly surprising and classic. The audiobook is especially fun... take on your next road trip.  more
Hastings has unapologetically disappeared from the the series! Poirot has retired to the countryside to garden; but the death of a local woman sets off a domino cascade of intrigue. We're not counting teacups (cf The Mysterious Affair at Styles); but we are to keep watch on the time! Robin Bailey is spot on as the village doctor from whose point of view the story is told.

Redacted from the original blog review at dog eared copy, Hercule Poirot Mysteries (1-4): Mini Op-Ed Reviews, 10/10/2011more
Audiobook. Very short, but good. The sound effects and narration were top notch. The story was well done.more
A great story and a well-written narrative. This is only the 3rd or 4th Poirot book (third in publishing order), but it takes place after Hastings has stopped sleuthing with Poirot. Poirot speaks warmly about his little friend throughout and clearly misses him, which is all the more meaningful having read some of the books developing this friendship which haven't even been written yet.more
I'll say right off the bat that it's impossible for me to give Agatha Christie's "The Murder of Roger Ackroyd" a fair rating.You see, I was absolutely obsessed with Christie's books in junior high and read everyone I could get my hands on. Flash forward more decades than I'd like to admit and I saw that "The Murder of Roger Ackroyd" was on the list of 1,001 books to read before you die. One of the covers looked somewhat familiar, so I may have read it before, and in my attempt to figure out whether I did, I read a review that revealed the ending in its very first sentence. Ugh.So throughout this reading, I knew the ultimate answer to the mystery... I may have given this a higher rating if I hadn't. That said, Christie is a genius at laying down clues and then quite furiously explaining why those clues don't matter at all. Interesting, that I have no real recollection of this book, though I feel sure I read it. I wouldn't count it among my favorite Christie stories, as her best, in my opinion is "And Then There Were None." I get why it's on the 1,001 list but feel like other Christie novels are more deserving.At any rate, I enjoyed the book, for both nostalgic and literary reasons.more
Gossip is the major sport in the small village of King's Abbot with very little in the way of exciting topics. But when Roger Ackroyd is found murdered in the his study, speculation goes wild. The main suspect is Ackroyd's stepson, Ralph, but when Ralph's fiance approaches Hercule Poirot who has been living in quiet retirement in the village, M. Poirot agrees to discover the whole truth.An absolute delight from start to finish. Christie's prose is sharp and witty, clearly evoking the period of the late 1920s in a small village with one large manor house. The characters are all well-rounded creatures whom it is easy to picture and Hercule Poirot sparkles as the understated Belgian detective with his peculiar approach to English and his emphasis on the power of "the little grey cells." But the big star of this novel is the mystery itself which is absolutely brilliant. I defy you to determine whodunnit.more
Take my advice: DO NOT READ ANY REVIEWS BEFORE READING THIS BOOK. Thankfully, I had forgotten what I had read about this book in the past, so my reading experience was phenomenal. You really do not want to be spoiled, a state that is particularly difficult to avoid if you try to dig up much about this book. Agatha is queen, and this is one of her best. That is all you need (and want) to know!more
I hadn't read an Agatha Christie novel since my mid-teens, and I was quite prepared to find this book old-fashioned and trite. To my delighted surprise, the writing is crisp and occasionally tongue-in-cheek, with some great characters, amongst which Poirot in great form (Maggie Smith should be cast as Mrs. Ackroyd if a film is made of this book). As a detective novel, it is a tour de force - saying more would be a spoiler.more
Abridged on three CDs, and read by Nigel Anthony. A famous Poirot story, but one I'd never read before. Beautifully pulled off, although I suspect it suffers a little from the abridgement. Even with the abridgement issues, I loved this. And that's all I'm going to say about it.more
Wow... Now that was a real surprise at the end!I generally like Agatha Christie novels, and have read quite a number of them, but I had never read this one yet. I really liked it, it keeps you guessing every time some new piece of evidence is found, and in the end, I still had no clue. Very skillfully done and well-written.more
Best Christie ever....I actually figured out the ending...more
I'm starting to get a bit worried about my memory. I'm pretty sure I read all of Agatha Christie's books as a teenager, and I've definitely watched various TV versions multiple times, and yet the dénouements keep coming as a surprise to me. And in this case I'm glad of it, because it would have been a completely different experience reading the book if I'd known who the murderer was.This is the only one of Christie's books on the 1001 Books to Read Before You Die list. I can absolutely see why - it's a beautifully constructed mystery, very imaginative, and doubtless a huge influence on the genre - but is it really better than, say, Murder On The Orient Express? I'm not convinced.more
When I pick up something by Agatha Christie, I know it's going to be good. The narrator is instantly fascinating, especially as he describes his investigations with the fastidious little Belgian (who the narrator hilariously thinks is a hairdresser upon meeting!). I wish I had counted the number of times "little grey cells" appeared in this book - far more than the other Poirot mysteries I have read!more
I've been a Christie fan since 8th grade and have read them all so many times that I always remember whodunit. Nevertheless, I find them a relaxing and enjoyable read when I'm taking a break from more weighty fiction. This is one of the finest examples of the genre- I still remember being shocked at the murderer the first time I read this book. Hercule Poirot was certainly on his game when he tackled this country house mystery. Though Hastings and Inspector Japp were absent, it was delightful to get a fresh perspective on Poirot from the narrator, a country doctor with an inquisitive sister. Certainly an excellent read for any mystery fan, and an excellent introduction to Christie for the uninitiated.more
the best novel of agatha Christie. she had inspired a lot of writer with her style such as JD Carr. it has to be in your library. When she discloses the murderer and the motive it is the book's crux as the reader is completely surprised. great book.more
I was stunned when I realized who the killer had to be.more
Of all the Agatha Christie books I've read--of all the mystery books I've read, there are three with such jaw-dropping resolutions that you want to scream, "I don't believe she did that!" One is And Then There Were None, another is Murder on the Orient Express and the third is The Murder of Roger Ackroyd. Of the three, this is the one I was tempted to read again immediately upon finishing to make sure Christie played fair--she did. One thing that struck me on reread was not only how smoothly this was written--it's first person and that's important--but also how much humor there is, despite it being a murder mystery. Although certainly there are aspects to detective Hercule Poirot's personality that lend itself to comedy. This is a perfect puzzle box tale, a classic "locked room" mystery in a country manor complete with butler. The kind of mystery Raymond Chandler in an essay naming Christie complained were "contrived" and "arid formula." Literary critic Edmund Wilson even wrote an essay attacking mysteries titled "Who Cares Who Killed Roger Ackroyd?" Go ahead and sniff disdainfully at me if you like for my rating of a full five stars. It's not Dostoevsky with complex characters and profound thoughts on the human condition(tm) but it's entertaining and clever and there's good reason it's been in print for over 80 years. (And I like it a hell of a lot more than Chandler's The Big Sleep.)more
Best Christie ever....I actually figured out the ending...more
This was the first ever Agatha Christie book I've ever read and I am a bit mixed on it. I find it hard to fairly judge the older mysteries because all the things and tropes we take for granted now were brand new and not always worked out then.I found this book very hard to get into at first, until after about the first 100 or so pages, which is when the Poirot character actually started to become more involved in the story and it focused less and less on the first characters introduced and they actually started working on solving the mystery. That is the point where I started to get engaged in the story and it started to be fun.I thought the mystery was well handled and once I thought about the conclusion I can see how it got there, often surprise endings feel like a cheat where corners are cut and things happen off stage as it were so you had no chance to see it coming, not so in this case. When you look back, the pieces were all there.I enjoyed this one well enough, and I really enjoyed Poirot's character so I will happily give more of the books a try.more
One of my favorite Christie books, not so much for Poirot's detection skills, but for its classic ending. This time around was my second reading of this book, and knowing the ending, it was still fun watching the solution to this rather baffling crime unravel. Because of the nature of the story, I can't really give an in-depth summary here. If you decide to read this book, believe me, you'll thank me later. In the quiet English village of King's Abbot, Roger Ackroyd, as the title suggests, ends up murdered in the study of his home Fernly Park. As it just so happens, Poirot is in the village, staying in the house next door to Dr. Sheppard (the narrator) and his sister Caroline, where he spends his days growing vegetable marrows. Dr. Sheppard believes his new neighbor is a hairdresser, based on the evidence of Poirot's moustache. But Poirot reveals his true colors as he gets down to the business of Ackroyd's murder, using his "little gray cells" to comb through the staggering amount of red herrings and a number of suspects in the case. There are also a number of humorous moments throughout. An entire chapter is devoted to a rather crazy mah-jong game where the players share their own theories about the case in between calling out plays. And at one point, one of the suspects calls Poirot a "little foreign cock duck," and I swear I heard the voice of John Cleese in my head, as the epithet reminded me of that scene in Monty Python and the Holy Grail where the French knights mercilessly taunt King Arthur and his men ("your mother was a hamster and your father smelled of elderberries"). But on the serious side, I have to say that this second reading provided me with a deeper appreciation for Christie's attention to minute detail -- as even little things turn out to be important in this book.The Murder of Roger Ackroyd is one of Christie's best works, with an ending you won't soon forget. It's a definite must read in the Christie canon and one of my personal favorites.more
I had read this murder mystery in the mid-80's and remember it had made a very strong impression on me at the time. Roger Ackroyd, a very wealthy man living in the small town of King's Abbot is found murdered in his study. Hercule Poirot, who has just moved to King's Abbot to retire out of the public eye, is asked to investigate. He takes on Doctor Shepperd, the town physician, one of the last people to have seen Ackroyd alive, and the narrator of the story as his associate. There was something very comforting about the storytelling, but it had been decades since I'd read anything by Dame Christie and I couldn't help thinking of the game of Clue every time a butler or a maid or a Major or a Colonel or poison, daggers or jewels were mentioned, which very much amused me, but was also too distracting to allow me to enjoy the ride as much as I had the first time around. The relatively low rating this time around is more a reflection of my own idiosyncrasy as I would still highly recommend this great classic.more
This was my second Agatha Christie novel, after being completely absorbed by And Then There Were None. My new favorite is... I can't say. Both are landmarks of the mystery genre and still talked about to this day, and for me, both were impossible to put down. The early 20th century British prose is a treat, and there's a delight in enjoying stories that so many writers after Christie are influenced by.I never guessed who murdered Roger Ackroyd until Monsieur Poirot was ready to reveal the right clues. The last couple of chapters were a stunning revelation!more
Supposedly one of Christie's masterpieces, but I wasn't that impressed. It features Poirot, who unfortunetly I've never really got on with as well as Christie's other detectives. Rather than her usual invisible narrator style this is told very much in the frist person through the eyes of one Dr. Sheppard. He is GP to a fairly typical small English 1930s village. He lives with his sister an incurable, and unrepentant gossip. A husband dies in the village, and about a year later the wife commits suicide. Shortly after this Dr Sheppard is invited to the local Squires house for dinner. By the time he returns home it is discovered that Roger Ackroyd (the squire) has been killed. The daughter soon brings in the "famous foreign detective, who retired here last year" to help prove that her recently announced fiancee wasn't involved. Poirot lives next door to Dr Sheppard and so the good Dr gets to follow (in Watson like fashion) the detectives footsteps.Poirot's mannerisms are already annoying. Maybe this would have worked better if I'd followed the series from the start, but unlike Chrisities other characters these seem somewhat effected and distract from the story line. Much of the rest is quite interesting, especially the depiciton of typical 30s life. The long Mah Jog section will be confusing to anyone who hasn't played the game - and it is surprising to me that it was so well known then to be left unexplained, expecting the reader to be familiar with the terms.I didn't liek the conclusion, Poirot's suggestion, or the manner in which it was achieved.more
This would be a good starting place for someone unfamiliar with Christie's works. It is one of the Hercule Poirot detective stories; I hadn't read any of them before and therefore can say that it doesn't seem to have a negative effect reading this one out of sequence. (It did make me want to read more of the series though!) The story is set in a small English village where gossip is the favored pasttime and nothing much of significance ever really happens; however, the village inhabitants are stunned when two mysteries unfold at once: one involving blackmail and a suicide, and the other involving murder. Hercule Poirot, who has just moved to the village to retire, is irresistibly pulled into the intrigue and starts to investigate. He is aided by the village doctor, Dr. Sheppard, who narrates the tale. It's been a long time since I was completely absorbed in a mystery, and this delivered that deliciously maddening desire to have to know- right now-- who done it? It's difficult to put it down once started, and the ending was nothing short of nail-biting shock. Christie is a master at keeping the reader guessing and then delivering an emotionally stunning wrap-up of her tale. This one kept me on the edge of my seat, and I can't wait to read more of her novels.more
One of Hercule Poirot novels, very meticulously designed and extremely entertaining.more
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