May 25, 2010

Curtains! Adieu to ze little grey cells

Yesterday I read the final Poirot novel by Agatha Christie, Curtain: Poirot's Last Case. Written in the forties, the Queen of Crime stowed the manuscript away for thirty years in a bank vault, to be released as she, like Poirot, was about to kick the bucket.
As part of my three goals I wanted to achieve in my lifetime, reading Christie's oeuvre was one, along with learning how to lip read and to buy a one way ticket somewhere in the world.
So far I have successfully completed one of these.
Having been reading the works of Agatha Christie on and off since I was twelve, it was getting to the point where I could no longer remember which ones I had read and which I had not (part of the enjoyment is the familiarity of all the plotlines, the repetitive dialogue and the archetypal characters, all cardboard cut outs off each other). The English Upper-class are all so painfully alike.
Christie was my favourite novelist, even though members of my family scorned me for reading them, for it could hardly be called 'high literature'. Until my mother put me on to Ngaio Marsh, I would rarely issue any other author out of the library, except if there was a Christie drought and I didn't have a choice.
That is what happened yesterday, and Curtain was the only tome left to be read. I had been holding out on this one as I knew Poirot met his demise in the end, and I wasn't sure I would want to read any more once I knew he was dead. So it was a sad farewell to an inevitable end, that I knew was coming and had been putting off for many years.
At least his hair and moustaches we black and immaculate until the end, even if it was a wig and a fake moustache.

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