Collins 4.50 From Paddington (elt Reader)
- Mixed media product
- HarperCollins Publishers
- Publication Date:
- 03 May 2012
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April 21, 1999The 4:50 From Paddington (aka What Mrs. McGillicuddy Saw!)Agatha ChristieMy first Miss Marple mystery (not THE first MM, just MY first). A friend of Miss Marple’s, Mrs. McGillicuddy, is traveling by train to visit with Miss Marple for a few days, and while on the train, witnesses a murder taking place on another train passing by – specifically, a woman being strangled by a man. No one believes her when she reports it, though, and no body is found on the other train. Miss Marple does believe her, of course, and deduces that the body must have been thrown out the train window. She even manages to figure out that it must have been thrown out onto the sprawling grounds of an old estate, and she then engages her brilliant, 30-ish friend, Lucy Eylesbarrow, to infiltrate the grand home of the prominent family who owns the land, find the body, and help solve the murder. Christie perfects her writing “tone” in this story, I think – not too dark, not too light. A perfect “Malice Domestic”.
One of my favorite Christies, partly because she so deftly complicated the story in so many ways, while the answer was right there in front of us. It's a Miss Marple, so that should give you a clue as to the best way to solve it. Marple methods are rather different than those of Poirot or the Beresfords. As always, Jane Marple demonstrates the importance of deduction and intuition, as well as ears that work very very well. A highly entertaining read that may well surprise you when the whodunit is revealed. It certainly did me.
Classic Ms. Marple -- what's not to love?
While traveling by train, Elspeth McGillicuddy witnesses a murder taking place in a train car that's on an adjacent track. She reports it to the porters and train officials as well as the police when she reaches her destination. However, because there were no other witnesses and no body can be found, no one believes her ... except her good friend Miss Marple. I usually read the Hercule Poirot books. Prior to this one, I had only read two other Miss Marple books and didn't enjoy them as much as I enjoy Poirot. However, this one was definitely an exception. I was hooked on this book right from the start. It seemed like Miss Marple was more of a minor character in this story, but it was still a really good story with a good cast of characters and very well written and a great setting. I will definitely be reading more Miss Marple now.
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