Thursday, April 10, 2014

The Murder at the Vicarage

The Murder at the Vicarage
by Agatha Christie

The Murder at the Vicarage was Christie’s very first mystery to feature her most popular investigator—as a dead body in a clergyman’s study proves to Miss Marple that no place, holy or otherwise, is a sanctuary from homicide. 

My Reaction (with SPOILERS):
(Read-along with Donald.)  Pretty good.  There were a few instances where my nit-picking tendencies took me out of the story-- the same word used almost back-to-back, for instance-- but overall, fine.  I've seen a TV adaptation of this book very recently, so (for once) I knew exactly what had happened, from the very beginning.  Well, I knew the TV adaptation's version of what happened, and I thought this particular adaptation was likely to be fairly faithful.  (It was.)

The best parts were Miss Marple and the little touches of humor.  I could've done with more of the humor, but where it was present, it never failed to please. 

One thing the TV version did change was the source of the false gunshot sound.  I have to say, I think the TV version (a speaker placed out in the woods) was more plausible than the book's (a stone somehow rigged up to fall at a fairly precise time onto a small crystal of some explosive chemical). 

Donald was surprised that Miss Marple herself wasn't in the story that much.  I wonder how much that changes in the later novels...