“Human beings, I have noticed, like to follow patterns, and I am no exception.”
– Sophie Hannah, Closed Casket
Hey Savvy Readers,
Any Agatha Christie fans out there? Well, if you aren’t one yet, you will be once you pick up Closed Casket (seriously, I know from experience). As I’ve been told, Sophie Hannah brings back Christie’s style beautifully. What a talented mystery writer! This is a fast-paced, exciting mystery filled with interesting characters, lots of mind-boggling twists and turns and loads of intricate dialogue.
Closed Casket features Scotland Yard detective Edward Catchpool, who was introduced to us by Sophie Hannah in The Monogram Murders, as well as the beloved detective, Hercule Poirot. These two distinguished characters are invited, along with 14 other guests, to Lady Athelinda (Athie) Playford’s estate, but they can’t seem to figure out why… Until they realize they all (detectives, a pathologist, a taxidermist, two estate lawyers, a mystery writer, a dying man and his nurse, etc.) have one common connection: death.
It is quickly uncovered that Athie’s reasoning behind inviting the guests is that she is worried her planned announcement may provoke a murder. Despite everyone’s best attempts, a murder does occur, and Poirot and Catchpool set forth with an investigation.
Poirot drives the investigation — his deducing and piecing together is fast paced with new surprises appearing on every page turned. For those who thought Poirot would go amiss without the beloved Agatha Christie, you can rest assured that he is safe in the hands of Sophie Hannah.
The other characters, although plenty — pay attention! (not that you need reminding, you’ll be easily caught up) — also have their own quirks, humour and charm. Lady Playford’s daughter, for example, makes quick stabs that can be quite enjoyable for the female reader, such as “The title landed on my younger brother and not me, simply because he is a man. Where is the sense in that? I would make a far better viscount than him.”
The conclusion, like always, will come as a surprise to any reader. There is simply no way to guess who the culprit is as the whodunit factor changes rapidly with each new revelation. As other reviewers have attested, Hercule Poirot and the continuation of the Agatha Christie mysteries are safe in the hands of Sophie Hannah.
Happy reading, Savvy Readers!