Book Review: Ordeal by Innocence by Agatha Christie

ORDEAL BY INNOCENCEAPB

Format: Paperback

Pages: 269 pages

Published: 1958

Publisher: Harper

Genre: Fiction, Mystery & Thriller

 

 

 

Synopsis:

Recovering from amnesia, Dr. Arthur Calgary discovers that he alone could have provided an alibi in a scandalous murder trial. It ended in the conviction of Jacko Argyle. The victim was Jacko’s own mother, and to make matters worse, he died in prison. But the young man’s innocence means that someone else killed the Argyle matriarch, and would certainly kill again to remain in the shadows. Shaded in the moral ambiguity of murder, the provocative psychological puzzler of guilt, vengeance, and blood secrets is among Agatha Christie’s personal favorites.


 

“It’s not the guilty who matter. It’s the innocent.”

And the innocent are the ones who suffer…especially with Dr. Arthur Calgary’s recent revelation. For a long period of time, the Argyle family was content with the fact that constant problem child, Jacko Argyle, was convicted of killing his own mother. Also they are happy that they could put this tragedy behind them since Jacko died in prison. All is well, that is, until Calgary discovers that he can provide Jacko with an alibi for the murder, which means Jacko is innocent. You would think that his family would be ecstatic at the news. But their fear and anxiety only escalates. Because not only does it mean that the killer is still out there…the killer may be one of them.

I can understand why Christie looked to this book as one of her favorites. This riveting mystery, like her other novels, has you guessing on every new turn of a page. More psychology was involved in this novel. I like how Christie gave a back story to each character, broke down their involvement, and managed to give each one of them a possible motive of the crime. Christie just has this gift of surprising you at the best possible moment. At first, you think that you have it all figured out. And then, wham! Here is the actual answer. It is like she is saying to you “Oh, nice try though but here how it really went.”

I love comparing Christie’s novels. For her series, like Miss Marple or Hercule Poirot, she has a different writing style. She writes one way for her favorite characters and another way when it’s a standalone novel. She style always varies and most readers might find that frustrating but I find that intriguing and exciting. You never know what you are going to expect when you read one of Christie’s mysteries. It gets very boring when books by the same author remain consistent and show no growth in his or her work. And Then There Were None was originally published in 1939 and Ordeal by Innocence in 1958. By comparing both , you can see how her writing expanded. If she didn’t do that, I don’t think her books would have help revolutionized the psychological/thriller genre.

So do the innocents suffer? Discover how far the killer will make them in this Christie classic. And Then There Were None and Murder on the Orient Express lovers will enjoy trying to solve this psychological puzzle.

 

Overall rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Get It At: Amazon |Barnes & Noble|Book Depository | Your local library

One thought on “Book Review: Ordeal by Innocence by Agatha Christie

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s