Another Brazil trip meant another couple of Christie novels with my old friend Hercule Poirot.
Poirot and Hastings are lounging around when – once again – there is a murder! In this story we have a hardened husband, a glamorous actress wife, an expert impressionist (i.e., impersonator), and so on. I read this in about 24 hours and thoroughly enjoyed it. It stood out from other encounters I’ve had with Hercule Poirot (all the novels and stories published previous to this one) in a couple of ways.
- This is the first Poirot book I’ve read in which I got to the end and really thought that the twist should have occurred to me.
- Inspector Japp, Poirot’s friend from Scotland Yard, is transformed in this book into a much more arrogant, silly character than he was in earlier Poirot books, always pretending the good ideas are his and consistently insulting Poirot while seeking his help.
And a final thought: I don’t know why the ever endearing Hastings (and I do enjoy Poirot more when he walks with Hastings) keeps questioning if Poirot is losing his skills. He’s not losing them, Arthur! He’s never losing them! Figure it out already!