Book Review: Murder on the Orient Express

Murder on the Orient Express: A Hercule Poirot MysteryMurder on the Orient ExpressMurder on the Orient Express: A Hercule Poirot Mystery by Agatha Christie

Another book club pick, and my very first Christie. Considering my love for mysteries, I’m not entirely sure why I’ve never read any of her books before.*

While it took me a few pages to get into the story, once I did I was hooked. I liked Poirot’s character, and I liked the methodical approach to his investigation.

I never try to figure out the solution to mysteries as I read them, and always consider it a bad sign when I do know the answer before the author directly reveals it at the end. In this case, while I knew the answer, I don’t know that it was really Christie’s fault, or if I’d heard about it because it is such a classic mystery.

I’m looking forward to finding some additional books by Christie – both in the Poirot series, and also some with Miss Marple. I think I’ll enjoy them as well, and it’s nice knowing that there are so many waiting for me. 🙂

Are you an Agatha Christie fan? If so, what’s your favorite of her books?

Publisher’s Description:
One of Agatha Christie’s most famous mysteries, Murder on the Orient Express was inspired by two real-life crimes and the author’s own experience being stranded on the Orient Express during Christmas of 1931. While traveling to Paris, a wealthy American is stabbed to death in his cabin on the Orient Express. With the train stuck in a snowdrift, there is no easy escape for the killer. Fortunately, detective Hercule Poirot is aboard and launches a clever investigation into the curious assortment of passengers, of whom each seems to have a motive.

Book Details

Title: Murder on the Orient ExpressMurder on the Orient Express: A Hercule Poirot Mystery
Author: Agatha Christie
Category: Fiction / Mystery
My Rating: 4 Stars

* Technically, I have read a portion of one of her Poirot books before. In a French class I took in grad school, we read an excerpt of one of her books that was translated into French. I’m not counting that since it was such a small excerpt, and was a translation. And my French was passable, but not fluent enough to really appreciate her writing.

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  1. One of my many Christie favorites is And Then There Were None. Love her!

  2. AHHH!! I can’t believe you are just now reading this! 🙂 Easily one of my favorite authors (and has been since I read my first Agatha Christie mystery at age 12), and Poirot (of all of Christie’s characters) is absolutely my favorite. I think I own all of the books involving Poirot, and quite a few with Miss Marple (though I can’t get into her as much). Tommy and Tuppence? Not at all. I tried, I really did, but I just don’t like them.

    “Murder on the Orient Express” is the one that I recommend to anyone who hasn’t read Christie before, but I have to agree with Lori that “An Then There Were None” is another fantastic option. Also, “Appointment with Death”, “Cards on the Table”, and “The ABC Murders” – but really? It’s hard to pick a favorite of Christie’s that involves Poirot – I love them all! 🙂

    • I know! I can’t believe it either – how on earth did I go this long before reading her! I want to try a Miss Marple next, and I’m thinking I may just go in publication order.

      Have you read The Grand Tour: Around the World with the Queen of Mystery? I’m not quite halfway through it and am really enjoying it. Makes me like her that much more, and be even more excited to read her other works.

  3. How fun for you to ‘discover’ Agatha Christie. Years ago my husband and I collected Agatha Christie books, they were easy to find at used book sales, as there are so many of them in print.

    I actually preferred the Miss Marple stories. Now that some years have passed I should read a couple of them to see how I would view them now.

    We have enjoyed watching the PBS Poirot mysteries. Very well done, so much information to pack into a short amount of time, but they handle it well.

    Have you read Dorothy Sayers?

    Really enjoy your blog, thanks so much.

    • I haven’t read any Sayers either. My experience with reading the mystery classics has been limited to Wilkie Collins’ The Woman in White (which I hated and didn’t finish). I think that might be why I never tried any of the other classics – was afraid they’d be like the Collins book.

      • Do like Carrie suggested, and start with “Whose Body?”

        • It pains me to read series books out of order. Yes, I realize this one is out of order, but I did it for book club. On my own? When I don’t have a deadline that I’d never reach if I tried to read all the earlier books in the series?? I don’t know if I can do it.

      • I’m so thrilled you finally read Agatha Christie!!! She’s definitely one of my all-time favorite authors. But there’s more than just Poirot and Miss Marple…. I adore “Tommy & Tuppence Beresford,” a crime-solving husband & wife team who go undercover during WWII. They’re hilarious, and definitely my favorite Christie sleuths!

        Suggested favorites to try next: N or M? (Tommy & Tuppence); And Then There Were None; Murder at the Vicarage (Miss Marple); and The Seven Dials Mystery (Superintendent Battle, another one of Christie’s sleuths).

  4. I love Agatha Christie. Hercule Poirot is great, but so is Miss Marple. I’ll have to dig out some old favorites.

  5. MotOE is probably my favorite. I <3 Poirot so much. I think it was the same PBS series that someone else mentioned which is also very good, but I'm not sure…I just remember the actor who played Poirot was EXACTLY what I always imagined him to be and it was really good.

    Maybe I'll go back and hit up some classics. I haven't read any Sayers in a long time, either.

    • It’s got me slightly curious to watch some of the PBS series (enough to overcome my usual reluctance to watch TV adaptations? perhaps.) Either way, I’d want to read a couple more to establish my own image of Poirot a little more thoroughly.

  6. Yet another book on my (long) list of books to read. Glad you liked it so much.

  7. My first Agatha Christie as well. I’m glad I didn’t know the ending because the surprising conclusion (and the attitude that they approached it with) really made me laugh.

    • I really wish I hadn’t known the ending, because it did take something away from the enjoyment of the book overall. Oh well, I don’t think I know the endings of any of her other books at least. 🙂


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