Tuesday, 1 January 2019

The Monogram Murders by Sophie Hannah

“The food at Pleasant’s was almost as good as the coffee. Indeed, when he considered the two together, Poirot found it hard to believe what he knew to be the case: that everybody who worked in the kitchen here was English. Incroyable.”   

If I'm completely honest here, this has been in my to be read pile for eons. Published in 2015, it is entirely likely that it has sat the bottom of the pile until I shuffled it around a little the other day. I'm always intrigued by the idea of modern authors re-visiting an existing franchise from long ago. It can be a diabolical mess or a delightful reminiscence. Sometimes however, it can land in the enjoyable but unforgettable territory and I feel that's the land where this novel subsists.

I admit I finished this one just after Christmas (the 27th to be precise) and I'm only getting around to writing this review. I'm one of those people who admires anyone brave enough to write a novel and so I tend to score on the high side. This was good but not great and certainly not of the calibre of Agatha Christie. Nevertheless trying to imitate another celebrated author is no mean feat and Hannah gives it a red hot go.

Certainly it is a delight to spend more time with the Belgian Detective. I used to pore over Christie books as a child - the fact that I was obsessed with Agatha Christie and the films of Alfred Hitchcock is a bit strange - probably a retaliation in thought due to extreme bullying at school - who knows?

In any case, this is an interesting experiment and a mildly entertaining one.

3 out of 5, who did it when there's no butler?

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