[Agatha Christie] Crooked House

  • Title: Crooked House
  • Author: Agatha Christie
  • Published: 1949 (19th impression 1978)
  • Publisher: Fontana / Collins
  • ISBN: 000-613798-9

I am always wondering how Agatha Christie mysteries can still be read in a modern context. Her mystery stories are about murders in the early- or mid-20th-century settings, which can be out-of-date easily. But what remains is not the murder cases but the lives of people and their psychologies, which do not change.

In Crooked House, we do not meet our famous Poirot or Miss. Marple. Rather, the story is narrated by a young man who is good-natured but does not have an intuition to crimes. Well, he cannot use his grey cells properly. This is an important point of this novel. There is no good clue or progression in the investigation. Only conflicting testimonies and clues are given. With no genius mind, a reader can be deep inside the plot and do his or her own investigation.

If you have read some of Agatha Christie’s novels, you are surprised that all characters in “Crooked House” are so familiar to you, but they are still fresh and have their own charm. This is the recurring theme of the author, especially in Miss. Marple mysteries. Miss. Marple always finds out the same type of people in her community. By understanding a small group of people, you can understand a whole society.

The author said the “Crooked House” is one of her own special favorites. The book might not be well-known compared to other stories, but it shows her understanding of human psychology and her moral concept.

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