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And Then There Were None Mass Market Paperback – March 29, 2011
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“The whole thing is utterly impossible and utterly fascinating. It is the most baffling mystery Agatha Christie has ever written.” (New York Times)
“One of the most ingenious thrillers in many a day.” (Time magazine)
“One of the very best, most genuinely bewildering Christies.” (The Observer (UK))
“There is no cheating; the reader is just bamboozled in a straightforward way from first to last….The most colossal achievement of a colossal career. The book must rank with Mrs. Christie’s previous best—on the top notch of detection.” (New Statesman (UK))
“The most astonishingly impudent, ingenious and altogether successful mystery story since The Murder of Roger Ackroyd.” (Daily Herald (UK))
“What Agatha Christie taught me was all about the delicate placement of the red herring. She was the ultimate genius behind ‘by indirections shall we find directions out.’ ” (Elizabeth George, New York Times bestselling author of the Inspector Lynley novels)
From the Back Cover
One of the most famous and beloved mysteries from The Queen of Suspense—Agatha Christie—now a Lifetime TV movie.
"Ten . . ."
Ten strangers are lured to an isolated island mansion off the Devon coast by a mysterious "U. N. Owen."
"Nine . . ."
At dinner a recorded message accuses each of them in turn of having a guilty secret, and by the end of the night one of the guests is dead.
"Eight . . ."
Stranded by a violent storm, and haunted by a nursery rhyme counting down one by one . . . as one by one . . . they begin to die.
"Seven . . ."
Which among them is the killer and will any of them survive?
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One of my favorite bits about this well-written whodunnit? The Vera/Philip relationship. Two, young guests on Soldier Island who clearly have some attraction to one another. Christie sets up little hints until she turns it on its head and reminds both characters, "Oh yeah, either one of you could be a megalomaniacal murderer." Screw romance. Romance is dead. Christie is dedicated in this book to just making some macabre fun.
As the story begins we are introduced to the various interesting characters who are making their way to the very remote Soldier Island in Devon. We learn very quickly that there is more to these characters than meets the eye and each seem to possess a significant secret concerning an event from their past. The book is broken into small subchapters and often each subchapter concerns the viewpoint of one of the characters. This is welcome given the amount of characters in this novel and helps make it more readable.
As they approach the Island, Ms. Christie sets up the location perfectly and there is a feeling of inaccessibility about the place. The boat pilot admits that access to the Island is impossible in bad weather and this immediately creates a very tense isolated atmosphere.
Once the guests get settled in and enjoy some dinner (without their host who is mysteriously absent), a mysterious voice booms out accusing each of them of a heinous crime committed some time in the past.
The alarmed guests then put their heads together to try and solve the mystery of who invited them to this isolated destination as they start to meet grizzly ends one by one. As the guests become fewer and fewer the tension builds and builds. Unlike many other whodunits there is a great deal of satisfaction from the tremendous conclusion.
If you are looking for the best mystery story of all time then look no further. You will not be disappointed.
If you enjoyed this book then there are two other books that you may also enjoy. They are both whodunits that I have read recently and are both set in an isolated environment like this masterpiece. They are Murder in Bermuda: An Anna Winters Cozy Mystery (Murder in Paradise Book 1) and Dying for Murder: A Cordi O'Callaghan Mystery and both are well worth a read also.
This is one of the great who-dunnit's, as there is so much misdirection on who the murderer could be and who it ends up being. Great work of mystery.