A while ago I signed up for the 2012 Back to the Classics challenge hosted by Sarah at her blog here. When I first saw this I saw that one of the books for the challenge was to read a classic mystery. Well, when I saw that, my first thought was to read what is arguably the most classic mystery of all time. Agatha Christie was one of the most prolific authors of all time and has been oversold only by Shakespeare and The Bible (according to the covers of several copies of her books that I own). For the purpose of the Back to the Classics challenge, this could also fall into the reread category as I have now read this book at least 3 times. However, I’m using it for the mystery category. Anyway, enough rambling for now, on with the review.
194 pages (I have a hardcover edition, the picture I’m posting for the book cover is just one that I liked)
The book follows 10 characters who are alone on an island. Each of the ten characters has a questionable event in their past where they were responsible for killing another person but couldn’t be found guilty because of the situations where the murder took place. You don’t see all of the characters in the book for a long time, but the book is well written and watching the characters slowly descend into paranoia is highly entertaining.
Indian Island, a small island that is cut off from the rest of the world for the duration of the book because of weather preventing boats from reaching the island.
10 people are brought to an island on suspicious circumstances. Their first night on the island they play a record accusing each person of a murder that could not be proven by the law. Shortly after the record plays, the first person falls dead. As they are on the island longer more and more people start to die. Even stranger is the fact that they are dying according to the nursery rhyme 10 Little Indians.
Agatha Christie is arguably the greatest mystery writer of all time, and this is easily her best book. This book is absolutely brilliant in every aspect. The characters were well written, and the mystery is perfectly played out. This is at least the third time I’ve read this book, and even going into the book knowing how everything ends up playing out I still loved it.
If any book can be called perfect, this book is perfect. If you enjoy mysteries and haven’t read this one, there is something wrong with you. Go read this book.