Hercule Poirot’s Christmas – Agatha Christie

Hercule Poirot's ChristmasApparently, I’m on an Agatha Christie kick this month, but wow, if I could plot like this, I’d never have time to read. I’d be too busy writing! All the clues were there and I still didn’t see it coming. I admit that with all the whining family members, it was nice to find a couple of people with a spine. Too bad they were hell-bent on revenge. But still, with all the back-stabbing family members, who wouldn’t feel right at home? Christie, not for the first time, borrows a page from Sherlock Holmes in this one, this time a page from The Hound of the Baskervilles with the family resemblance via an old family portrait. It was kind of fun realizing that, like a little inside joke between reader and author. I was reminded of the quote by Edith Wharton:

Another unsettling element in modern art is that common symptom of immaturity, the dread of doing what has been done before.

Dear Ms. Christie had no such difficulty and good for her. When it’s this good, it’s not plagiarism, it’s homage.