I was supposed to make a video for my vlog however, two things kept me from it:
I’ve got the flu and
The YouTube video manager page is down.
I’m not making this up and I’m not making excuses to put this off. I just can’t do a decent video with a sore throat and a runny nose! XD
Anyway, despite YouTube’s video manager page being down, the channel page is still up. I browsed over my past videos and this is what I found — the last murder mystery novel I read before recently finishing Agatha Christie’s The Mysterious Affair at Styles. So I read this novel, The Documents in the Case by Dorothy L. Sayers four months ago! I didn’t realize I was falling behind on my reading. Anyways, here are my impressions on Sayer’s novel:
At long last, I was able to begin and finish reading Agatha Christie’s first published novel, The Mysterious Affair at Styles. This title also introduces Hercule Poirot, Christie’s detective hero, for the first time.
Speaking of “first times”, this is the first detective/mystery novel that I read on my smartphone. Yup, I’m warming up to the idea of e-books and e-book readers. It’s so convenient and not-so-tacky-looking. Thanks to the PDF format of my copy of The Mysterious Affair at Styles and the document reader feature of my smartphone, I was able to finish the novel by reading it everywhere I went. It’s a totally time-efficient option, considering that I’ve had this novel since September 2010! O.o
Since I’m a sucker for 1920s and 30s detective fiction, I went out in search for a good mystery novel, preferably by Agatha Christie. Fortunately, my frequented bookstore had all the latest publications of Christie novels involving Hercule Poirot and Jane Marple. I rummaged through the bookshelves with a particular title in mind and fortunately, got hold of the only remaining copy of The Murder of Roger Ackroyd.
I was very specific of the title in my search because, though I haven’t read it before, I was immediately drawn into it after reading its synopsis on Wikipedia. It’s very unfortunate (and outright shameful that I consulted Wikipedia) that I read the novel’s summary first, before getting to read the full text. The only reason why I did so was because this particular novel was labeled as Christie’s most controversial novel. As I couldn’t wait to get a copy, and because I thought I wouldn’t be able to secure one in my lifetime, I got ahead and went through the summary. After reading it, I felt rotten. I wasted a good surprise and significantly reduced my excitement level for the story. Another lesson learned the hard way.
Among my collection of mystery novels by my most venerated mystery novel writers (Agatha Christie, Ngaio Marsh, and Sir Arthur Conan Doyle), Marsh’s titles are the ones that I am able to find every so often. I guess it’s because among the three, she is the most unheard of.
So once again, I’ve come over another Marsh novel: Hand in Glove. The story tells of a murder that happened while a social party was ongoing. The victim, Mr. Harold Cartell, a well-known barrister, fell into an excavation hole filled with muddy water; then, somebody let loose an 850-pound drainage pipe over his head. Of course, instant death was inevitable. But who wanted to kill him so badly …and brutally?
I have read my seventh Ngaio Marsh mystery, 12th in Marsh’s bibliographical chronology.
First published in 1943, this October 1984 edition features Inspector Roderick Alleyn in a mediocre spa-slash-hot spring-slash-resort (Wai-ata-tapu Hot Springs) in war-infested New Zealand. He is submerged in an irritating but small number of “patriots” where speculation of an enemy agent is amongst them. At first, everything is tolerable: the Claire family’s (owners of the spa) imbecility, Mr. Maurice Questing’s taking-over the spa as owner and manager, Herbert Smith’s near brush with death, the unsatisfying treatment of Geoffrey Gaunt (a world-famous theater actor), the impending theft of a cultural heritage, a torpedoed ship of relief goods, and the arrival of a mysterious Septimus Falls. Then, a suspected nauseating murder surfaces.