Mystery of the Yellow Room, Paperback Book
2.5 out of 5 (3 ratings)


  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 236 pages
  • Publisher: Dedalus Ltd
  • Publication Date:
  • Category: Crime & mystery
  • ISBN: 9781873982389

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Showing 1 - 3 of 3 reviews.

Review by

First written in 1908, The Mystery of the Yellow Room is considered one of the classics of the "locked-room"/impossible crime genre. Believe me, by the time you finish reading about the crime (never mind the rest of the book), you'll be scratching your head saying "how on earth did this just happen?"It seems that one Mathilde Stangerson goes off to her room (called The Yellow Room) in a pavilion where she and her father work at scientific experiments. The door is locked -- then she is heard to scream, followed by 2 gun shots. As her father and one of the servants rush to the door, they break it open and find only Mathilde, with fresh strangulation marks, a lump on the head and bloody handprints on the walls. But that's it. There's no one else there, and there's no way in the world whoever did this could have possibly escaped. Thus begins a very strange mystery. I can't say any more about it because I will totally wreck it if anyone's interested in reading it.The characters are rather interesting, especially the main character, young (18) journalist with the paper "L'Epoque" -- a journalist with a detective bent. He shares his information with a M. Sinclair, the narrator of the story. Mathilde Stangerson is a woman with many secrets, and nothing is revealed until the end, keeping you hanging on. There are several suspects, many red herrings and multiple clues, so if you are okay with a somewhat rambling narrative (I think it can be excused given the date the book was written), you'll probably find this one to be quite well done. It's likely that modern readers may find this one a bit tedious since we often like to get to the point quickly. In this book, the who, how and why are not divulged until the last minute.Overall, it's a bit rambly, but it's still a fine mystery and you're really just dying by the end to find out everything. Recommended for people who enjoy classic mysteries and locked-room mysteries.

Review by

I docked half a star for the not quite neat and tidy ending, but otherwise mostly enjoyed this. I liked the young journalist as the central character, competing with the stereotypical detective and their coming to different, competing conclusions. The murderer could have done things more wisely and logically in a few instances, where the author had him do some purposely contorted things in order to make events more mysterious; this device was a bit too transparent. I've an even greater appreciation for Agatha Christie now, who rose head and shoulders above this precedent. Rouletabille is a likeable character, but I don't think we'll be crossing paths again.

Review by

I really wanted to like this book, but it seems to drag on and on without any conclusion and I eventually gave up and read the plot on Wikipedia and was glad I didn't finish since the ending seems very far fetched.

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