Victoria is an avid reader whose opinions are based on the genre of each story and how each novel ranks in its genre.
"And Then There Were None" Synopsis
10 complete strangers are sent invitations they could not refuse to the illustrious Soldiers Island by the wealthy Mr.Owen. None of the characters have ever met before. Upon arrival, they find out that their host is delayed and isn't expected for a little while. Amidst trying to find comfort on this small island, the 10 strangers receive a message that broadcasts to them why they have been invited to Soldier island. Each participant is a murderer in some way shape or form. Now the people of the house are dropping like flies, but who's the murderer?
The 3 Pro's of The Book
1. Well-Plotted: The author of "And Then There Were None" Agatha Christie is known as "The Queen of Mystery." Christie has written some of the most famous who-done-its ever written like "Murder on the Orient Express" and "The A.B.C Murders". After reading my first Agatha Christie novel, I can honestly understand why she has received this title. "And Then There Were None" is so well thought-out and organized that it's clear Christie was thorough in her work as a writer. Towards the end of the novel, there are moments of inquiry when the reader will wonder if the novel is left open-ended.`it's not everything comes to a final and conclusive ending that is surprising, yet expected.
2. Book Length: A common occurrence when reading books considered to be a classic novel is, they can be drawn out and overly descriptive. "And Then There Were None" is nothing like that and in my opinion the perfect length for a simple murder mystery novel. Just shy of 240 pages this book is easy to read, direct and easily keeps the reader engaged. It's the perfect book for someone looking for a mentally stimulating yet quick read. Especially if you're going on vacation if you catch my drift.
3. Good Ending: Nothing is more frustrating than reading a murder mystery novel and never truly getting the answers to all your questions by the end. To me, this is honestly a waste of a read for I don't start a book anticipating an ending of loose ends. I want the answers and explanations! "And Then There Were None" fulfills the need for answers perfectly by the end. Throughout the book, the reader is full of questions and given a little, barely perceptible clue/ answers but by the end, Christie pulls it together in a casual way that answers everything without being completely outrageous.
Crime is terribly revealing. Try and vary your methods as you will, your tastes, your habits, your attitude of mind, and your soul is revealed by your actions.
— Agatha Christie, And Then There Were None
2 Con's of This Novel
1. To Many Characters: Multiple perspectives is almost crucial to writing a novel of this caliber for it enhances the air of suspicion amongst characters. With that in mind, it is very easy in my opinion to slur together perspectives and voices of characters making it hard to differentiate between people while reading. I considered before starting this novel taking notes about each character and their mannerisms to help with the differentiation process. I did, however, decided agains't taking notes for it can, in my opinion, take away from the immersive reading experience. This I regret for Christie explains each character as more or less a common white person, their age and gender. My point being if you read this novel take notes or find a resource to help keep track of whos who in this story for it will get confusing at times.
2. I Didn't Like Any of The Characters: Don't get me wrong I genuinely enjoyed how straight forward and to the point "And Then There Were None" is however I feel in the straightforwardness it's hard to connect with the characters. I Thought going into this novel I might end up feeling sorry for these characters or maybe picking a favorite in hopes they survived but honestly they were all crummy people! As bad as it might sound when one reads this novel it's not so much a matter of hoping someone survives but finding out how it is they don't and whos doing it. I believe though that this was Christie's intent when writing this mystery but you would have to read it to understand why.
When the sea goes down, there will come from the mainland boats and men. And they will find ten dead bodies and an unsolved problem on Soldier Island.
— Agatha Christie, And Then There Were None
My Final Thoughts
"And Then There Were None" is an average who-done-it novel. It is easy to read and follow for the most part. It has enough mystery and thrill to keep the reader entertained from start to finish and is well thought out. My only true complaints come from the design of Christie's characters. If I had been able to better relate to these 10 strangers or sympathize with them, then I feel I like would have enjoyed this book more emotionally then I did. Otherwise, it was similar to watching a crime TV show—fast, enjoyable, but ultimately unmemorable.
This doesn't mean you won't enjoy the novel. It is questionably one of Christie's best stories. In my opinion, something I feel one must be in the mood for. Whether you feel like this is a book you would like to give a try or if not just to add a classic to your reading roster, then get your copy of "And Then There Were None" and let me know what you think!