Narrator: Hugh Fraser
Series: Hercule Poirot #39
Published by HarperAudio on July 3, 2012 (first published 1969)
Genres: Vintage Mystery
Length: 6 hrs 27 mins
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At a Hallowe’en party, Joyce—a hostile thirteen-year-old—boasts that she once witnessed a murder. When no one believes her, she storms off home. But within hours her body is found, still in the house, drowned in an apple-bobbing tub.
That night, Hercule Poirot is called in to find the 'evil presence.' But first he must establish whether he is looking for a murderer or a double murderer.
Yes, I’m reading too many Agatha Christie’s lately. No, I don’t care. It’s October and Hallowe’en Party was “available now” at the library, so I picked it up.
This time Hercule Poirot is called to the case by an old friend, Ariadne Oliver. Ariadne is staying with a friend in Woodleigh Common and was at a Halloween party where a thirteen year-old girl, Joyce, was murdered. Ariadne is a famous mystery author and Joyce had been trying to impress her earlier in the day by telling her that she had witnessed a murder. The theory then is that the girl was killed by the person who she saw kill someone years earlier.
We get to meet a bunch of the villagers and a couple of the older kids. I think the killer in this one was a little easy to guess, even if the motive was a little wonky. The kids make it a little tough, telling lies, being gullible, thinking they are more mature than they are.
There was a lot in this one about “those young folks” and how terrible society is becoming. There is a lot of discussion about sex crimes committed by “mentally retarded” people, even though, thankfully, there isn’t one in the novel. Christie is usually better than this, but a not-so-great Christie is still enjoyable. And I do adore Poirot.
Reading this book contributed to these challenges: