Agatha Christie’s Cards on the Table was, like all Agatha Christie’s, a bit of a cheat by her simply because of all the red herrings and innocuous characters introduced and then forgotten.

Hercule Poirot are her best works, though, and that’s just a statement of fact.  There’s just no two ways around it, we all want to be that fussy just once in our lives.  In this mystery, Poirot’s joined by other detectives by Christie.  Not as famous, but characters none-the-less.  Superintendant Battle, Colonial Race, and the indefatigable Ariadne Oliver (which is based on Christie herself). 

The mystery, who killed a pompous blackmailer, Mr  Shaitana.  A man who specializes in finding and threatening those who “got away with it.”  Frankly, if you’re stupid enough to threaten a person who has already proven they have the stomach to kill another human being, you deserve what’s coming your way.  But that’s off point.

With the help of Battle, Race and Oliver, Poirot jumps to an almost impossible conclusion based on improbable evidence and manages to get the killer to reveal themselves with the trite but true “Damn you, you French nosy parker!” method.  But, of course as we all know, Poirot is Belgian.

Now, because all the suspects are all murderers, it makes for a lot of moments where you will be like “Oh, so they did it?  Oh, nevermind then.  Fine…” and you continue to read, because everyone pretty much had not only the motive but the mental nasty to have done it.  Don’t cheat and only read the end, because the story is a fun one, and the small sub-plots are cute, if not that well fleshed out.

All in all, not one of her best works but it’s Christie, can you really say no?

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