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Death on the Nile by Agatha Christie

Death on the Nile

by Agatha Christie
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Quick take

One of Agatha Christie’s most famous mysteries follows the race to solve a murder aboard a Nile River cruise ship.

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Beloved detective Hercule Poirot embarks on a journey to Egypt in one of Agatha Christie’s most famous mysteries, Death on the Nile.

The tranquility of a cruise along the Nile was shattered by the discovery that Linnet Ridgeway had been shot through the head. She was young, stylish, and beautiful. A girl who had everything . . . until she lost her life.

Hercule Poirot recalled an earlier outburst by a fellow passenger: “I’d like to put my dear little pistol against her head and just press the trigger.” Yet in this exotic setting nothing is ever quite what it seems.

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Why I love it

A stunning location. A Perfect Murder. A host of suspects. And in the middle of it all, a brilliant detective.

Countless Golden Age mysteries have this same setup, but Agatha Christie’s Death on the Nile is something special. Now, Dame Agatha hardly needs my endorsement. She is the best-selling author of all time, after all. Her very name is synonymous with mystery and murder. But sometimes when an author becomes An Institution, the books themselves can get lost in the myth, or dismissed altogether, relics from the past. And that’s a mistake because I promise you, Death On The Nile might have been published in 1937, but the complicated women at its heart—and its shocking ending—make it just as fresh and vital as any 21st century thriller.

The book opens with that juiciest of plots—a love triangle. Linnet Doyle is a socialite recently married to Simon. The only problem? Simon’s ex, Jacqueline de Bellefort (who is also Linnett’s former best friend. I told you! Juicy!). When all three find themselves on a cruise down the Nile, things take a deadly turn. Luckily, world-famous detective Hercule Poirot is also on board, but with multiple suspects and more bodies piling up, the truth turns out to have more loops and bends than the Nile itself.

Whether this is a reread or your first time in Christie’s delightfully devious mind, I invite you to step aboard the Karnak, where the champagne is cold, the band is hot, and the passengers are glamourous. Just be sure to lock your cabin door.

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