Do you read mystery thrillers? If you do, you will understand my frustrations about being able to guess the culprit in the first few chapters. But when you are reading a book by Christie, you don’t have to fear. So how did The Sittaford Mystery by Agatha Christie fare on my scale?
About the book
Book Name: The Sittaford Mystery
Author: Agatha Christie
Characters: Major Burnaby, the Willets, Captain Joe Trevelyan, Emily Trefusis, James Pearsons, Inspector Narracott
Major Burnaby visits his new neighbors, the Willets and finds himself participating in an Ouija board game (“tableturning”). The seemingly harmless game ends with the “spirits” announcing that Captain Trevelyan, his long time friend and landlord, is dead.
Burnaby gets restless and takes it upon himself to make sure the Captain is well, trudging through the thick snow. But as it turns out to be, the Captain is really dead and his nephew is arrested.
Emily Trefusis, the fiancée of the nephew takes it upon herself to acquit him and find the real culprit. Was it just coincidence that the séance pronounced the death? If so, who killed the Captain forms the rest of the story in The Sittaford Mystery by Agatha Christie.
My initial thoughts
I am not even surprised anymore that I failed to solve an Agatha Christie’s murder mystery. While I had two or three lines of suspicions, I was not even close to the actual murderer. I bow down before the Queen of mystery, once again.
Emily Trefusis and Inspector Narracott worked well for me, and their styles never clashed with each other. No negativity, but I liked him more than some of Christie’s regulars themselves.
I loved the ensemble of colorful characters – puzzle loving Major Burnaby, the Willets who have made a bizarre decision to spend their winter in an isolated place in Dartmouth, absolutely unlikeable heirs of the Captain and the weak, naïve accused James Pearson and of course Emily Trefusis herself!
Emily was a welcome change. She spoke her mind, put on a bit of act and was earnest in freeing her fiancé, and had a great sense of humor. And Charles Enderby played the perfect sidekick. Well, how many times do we get the female to do the heavy lifting and the male being the humble sidekick!
What worked for me
- I really liked Inspector Narracott and his working style as much as I enjoyed Emily’s.
- I loved the snowy and secluded Sittaford background, perfect for my small town loving self.
- The tableturning or Ouija board game was nice add in too. I confess it misled me a bit more than it should have.
What may have been better
- I wish we heard more about the Captain Joe Trevelyan, the misogynistic, money loving victim. Literally that is all we hear about him.
- I didn’t want to read the men fighting over Emily. I want mystery, murder, and mayhem and no romance please.
The Sittaford Mystery by Agatha Christie is a perfect mystery thriller for the lovers of the whodunnit genre. If you like an ensemble mystery this one is for you and again you can’t go wrong with Agatha Christie.
Have you read The Sittaford Mystery by Agatha Christie? How did you like it? What is your favorite book from the Christie’s? Let us talk.