The Murder of Roger Ackroyd – Hercule Poirot
Agatha Christie’s ‘The Murder of Roger Ackroyd’ – a Hercule Poirot mystery…
A county squire is found dead in his study, a Tunisian dagger buried in his neck – and suddenly it turns out that many people had wanted him dead!
A Book Review of The Murder of Roger Ackroyd… by The Victim:
I’m Roger Ackroyd – and someone murdered me.
That’s obvious from the title of this book. What’s not, is who did it.
But my old friend Hercule Poirot is living incognito in our little village of King’s Abbot, nine miles from Cranchester. I’m confident he’ll uncover the mystery and bring the killer to justice.
After all, M.Poirot was once a world-famous detective before he retired to the countryside to grow marrows!
In his investigation into my killing, Hercule Poirot was assisted by the village doctor, Dr.Sheppard, who narrates the entire story. Everything happened almost right under his nose!
I invited him over to dinner that fatal night, to discuss a recent heartbreaking event – the sudden death of his patient, and my fiancee, Mrs.Ferrars. She had taken an overdose of Veronal. Nobody knew why – except me. She had trusted me with her dirty secret, a secret that led to… blackmail.
The only thing she hadn’t told me was the name of her blackmailer.
Everyone was at the table for dinner, except my stepson Ralph Paton. There was my sister Mrs.Ackroyd; her strikingly beautiful daughter Flora; my dear friend and game hunter Major Blunt; and my efficient secretary Raymond.
Parker, my butler, and Mrs.Russell, my housekeeper were in charge of the domestic staff serving the meal, which included the intriguingly snobbish parlormaid Ursula Bourne.
Afterwards, the doctor and I retired to my study.
I was all aflutter, nervous and anxious about another piece of terrible news I had just received earlier that day. After checking carefully to make sure we couldn’t be disturbed – or overheard – I told Dr.Sheppard the whole story Mrs.Ferrars had shared before her sudden death.
“Who was the man?” he asked me.
“She wouldn’t tell me. Actually, she didn’t even say the blackmailer was a man,” I replied, and then asked the doctor, “What should I do now? How can I get hold of the scoundrel?”
Just then, the evening post was brought in to me. In it was a letter from Mrs.Ferrars!
I dismissed Dr.Sheppard because I wanted to read it – alone.
A short while later, I was killed.
As I observed the events following that incident, helpless to do anything about them (because I was dead!), I grew increasingly confused.
Every tiny clue mattered. No event or person or action could be ignored. And Hercule Poirot meticulously uncovered them all.
He had been asked to help with the investigation by my niece Flora, a lovely girl who had recently got engaged to my stepson Ralph – at my insistence. “I want the truth,” said Flora, as she convinced M.Poirot to take up the case. “All the truth?” asked Poirot. “All the truth,” Flora insisted.
I worry if she really means that. I hope she won’t regret it.
Anyway, Hercule Poirot got right down to it. He talked to everyone involved. And a curious collection of clues emerged.
A locked door. A chair that was moved. An open window.
Nothing was too trivial or unimportant to the great detective.
“Each one of you has something to hide,” he thundered at a meeting he called of all the suspects.
As it turned out, he was correct. It shocked me. So many of my friends and relatives had good reasons to want me dead!
And there was so much confusion.
About who was the last person to see me alive? Who heard something that might be incriminating? Who was the mystery lady seen running around the corner of the house late that night? Or the stranger who asked for directions to the Hall near the gate?
Was Major Blunt right about a conversation he overheard between me and someone else? Did the butler try to eavesdrop on it through the keyhole? Was one of my own household a blackmailer – and, even, a murderer? Or did the killer come from outside the house?
And what did all of this have to do with drugs and meetings in a tool shed in my garden? Who made the call to Dr.Sheppard’s house late at night – that led to his discovering my dead body? Above all else, where had my stepson Ralph vanished to and why can’t even the police locate him – to accuse him of my murder?
It’s all a deep, dark mystery.
And to unravel it required “order and method”. As Hercule Poirot is fond of saying, it involves using the “little grey cells” in your brain.
Can you sift through these clues (remember, nothing is unimportant!) and figure out what happened in my room that night? Will you be able to identify the murderer even before the great Hercule Poirot does?
Read ‘The Murder of Roger Ackroyd’. Jot down your notes. Draw up your own conclusions. And then see if they match Dr.Sheppard’s narrative of the devious, heinous crime.
“The truth, however ugly in itself, is always curious and beautiful to the seeker after it.”
– Hercule Poirot
The Murder of Roger Ackroyd was a book that transformed Agatha Christie’s writing career. She got the idea for the story from her brother-in-law’s remark that in detective stories these days, everyone turns out to be a criminal. The story has been made into a play, and later adapted into a film in 1931.
Narrated by Dr.Sheppard, a country general practitioner who was also a neighbor to the great Belgian detective Hercule Poirot, the story begins with a tragic sudden death which turns out to be related to blackmail. Agatha Christie, the master storyteller, takes a reader through a breathlessly evolving tale, tossing out clues right and left that will leave you – and Poirot – struggling to piece together a solution to the mystery.
Agatha Christie’s Poirot will bring his much-vaunted order and method to the process of sifting through the complex maze to arrive at the startling conclusion. “It’s your little grey cells that help solve any problem,” he’s fond of saying.
Can you use it to solve The Murder of Roger Ackroyd before Hercule Poirot can?
The World’s Favorite Hercule Poirot Books by Agatha Christie
A unique special edition of three favorite Hercule Poirot novels including Agatha Christie’s most popular book ‘The Murder of Roger Ackroyd’. The bundle makes a lovely gift or keepsake of Hercule Poirot books.
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