Simeon Lee makes an announcement that only causes uproar among his family, his children are furious and soon Poirot is called to investigate his impossible murder. With the door locked from the inside and a sign of a struggle who could have done it?
Something classic to bring me back to murder mysteries and it was a real head-scratcher! Sometimes Christie's novels leave enough breadcrumbs for me to connect the dots but I had to get the notebook out for this one and write down my theories, and none were correct! I do have to admit that even though I was shocked by the end, I was a little disappointed with the reveal itself, and I'll make it clear, there are spoilers ahead.
Whilst I'm aware Christie's mysteries always pushed the boundaries of what was classed as a believable crime, this one pushed it a touch too far. Many of the characters were not who they said they were and the 'twists' just became unexpected plot diversions without any forewarning or subtle hints. This also includes the big 'twist' of who the murderer was, but I do have to admit the intricacies of how he did commit the murder were exceptionally clever and it did remind me of why I enjoy these novels. I find Christie either blows me away with how she hid the murderer in plain sight and showed us from the start who it was or she puts together an insane method of killing, I don't think I've read a Poirot with both.
Reading this was purely based on the fact it was Christmas at the time, to be honest, it isn't a Christmas read, there, I said it. Just like how Die Hard is only a Christmas movie because of the time of year its set in, this is the exact same. That being said the eerie and chilly atmosphere made for a good background for the coldness between characters. As always, Christie does set a good secluded scene, at the Lee house it was clear to keep track of those involved and that closed-cast of suspects is what I'd expect, but, that's why the reveal was a disappointment. The murderer and his reasons for killing seemingly came out of nowhere and as a lover of "they're under our noses the whole time" plot it seemed a quick cop-out.
Alas, I love Poirot. This isn't one of my favourite novels but it was still clever and I have to appreciate it. Here's to the next one!