The Murder at the Vicarage

The Murder at the Vicarage - Agatha Christie I am a huge fan of Agatha Christie, in particular the Poirot novels and stories, and it goes without saying that she was, and still is, the grand master of the art of the puzzle mystery. Each story and crime made up of interlocking events, motives and clues, all combining by the end into a finished tapestry with no loose ends or threads of any kind.

Where Christie really excelled however was in building these puzzles out of very real, living, breathing people, each of which a study in character whose story is fascinating and unique, some exotic, some exciting in richness of their very banality.

This was the first Miss Marple mystery I have read, and it was a shining example of exactly the sort of thing she was best at. A small village, teeming with entertaining characters, an interesting and very relatable narrator, an intricate and well written murder at the center - and of course, Marple herself. A marvelous old biddy with an eye for detail as sharp as Poirot or Holmes, a mind like a steel trap and an excellently dry sense of humour.

There is a reason that Christie ranks high even now amongst fan of crime fiction, and that her books, some 80 years or more after publication, remaining best sellers. Plain and simply, she was, and still is, an entirely entertaining storyteller.