Customer Reviews


23 Reviews
5 star:
 (11)
4 star:
 (9)
3 star:
 (3)
2 star:    (0)
1 star:    (0)
 
 
 
 
 
Average Customer Review
Share your thoughts with other customers
Create your own review
 
 

The most helpful favourable review
The most helpful critical review


12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Three Act Tragedy
“Three Act Tragedy” is well worthy of the title being split into three separate sections of the story which Agatha Christie even named “First, Second and Third Acts.” The theatrical theme is fully developed within the plot as it concerns the famous actor Sir Charles Cartwright.
***Possible Spoilers***
Sir Charles has retired to the quiet...
Published on 30 Oct. 2005 by Rich Milligan

versus
0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Disppointed
I am a big fan of Agatha Christie and read her books over and over again until I could be practically word perfect. Unfortunately this book just doesn't rock my boat. I don't feel that this book is a Poirot in its true sense as he seems to have more of a cameo roll than the main character like other Poirot books. The book just didn't seem to flow like others and I felt...
Published on 25 Jan. 2013 by Mrs. A. L. Maddocks


‹ Previous | 1 2 3 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Three Act Tragedy, 30 Oct. 2005
By 
Rich Milligan (Thatcham, Berkshire) - See all my reviews
“Three Act Tragedy” is well worthy of the title being split into three separate sections of the story which Agatha Christie even named “First, Second and Third Acts.” The theatrical theme is fully developed within the plot as it concerns the famous actor Sir Charles Cartwright.
***Possible Spoilers***
Sir Charles has retired to the quiet costal town of Loomouth and has organised a small party for a number of distinguished guests. There’s the eminent Harley Street doctor Sir Bartholomew Strange, the beautiful actress Angela Sutcliffe, Lady Mary Lytton Gore and her daughter, the curiously nicknamed “Egg”, Mr Satterthwaite a well known patron of the arts and several others. Also amongst the crowd is the beautifully turned out Hercule Poirot.
When during the serving of cocktails, one of the guests, Rev Babbington keels over and dies, no-one suspects anything more than a unfortunately accident. Sir Charles, who is love sick for Egg decides he has lost her to another and leaves the country for Monte Carlo. Whilst there he meets up with Mr Satterthwaite and they read of the news that Sir Bartholomew has also been killed in an event remarkably similar to the one that happened at Sir Charles’ house in Loomouth. The two immediately decide to return to England to investigate the matter, and when Mr Satterthwaite meets M. Poitrot also in Monte Carlo he lures the famous detective in on their investigations.
As I say the book has a very theatrical feel to it, with the bulk of the investigation being carried out by Sir Charles who adopts the mannerisms of various characters to aid him in this. M. Poirot really sits on the sidelines a little and the main investigators use him as a sounding board to their various theories on what has really happened.
The key to the murder is a ruse that Christie has used in other books (“Lord Edgeware dies” for example) but it’s still enjoyable and very nicely put together. The book also benefits from some interesting characters, Mr Satterthwaite is a fine example, and makes for great reading.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Three Act Tragedy, Another Christie winner, 23 April 2011
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
One of Christie's darker tales I think, The novel starts with a closed room murder, of an innocent clergyman at a dinner party. One of the guests had to have done it, but who? And Why?

A Poirot mystery, yet his imput is not really needed- he seems almost an after thought, as if Christie really liked the book and thought more people would read it if she added Poirot. But it doesnt take much away from the story, or from the main dectective, Mr Satterthwaite, helped by his friends and the host of the first party, Sir Charles Cartwright.

This is one of Christie's classic examples of misdirection, and one of her most callous killers. I really enjoyed reading it, and as with almost all of her books, I never guessed the killer until they were revealed to me, and then I was shocked and felt quite betrayed. Looking back there were one or two clues (the butlers bedroom), but I was definately kept in suspense untill the very end.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It was an entertaining read and an unexpected crossover., 11 April 2014
I really enjoyed the Agatha Christie's Mr Quin collection, and was pleasantly surprised to find Poirot and Mr Satterthwaite teaming up to investigate the suspicious death of Rev Babbington, when he suddenly dies at a party Mr Satterthwaite was attending.
I've seen some reviews disappointed that Poirot takes more of a back seat in this book, compared to his usually being the main focus of the book, but I thought this worked well, and I appreciate an author trying something a little different. Likewise Mr Satterthwaite takes a much more active role in this book, as it tends to be Mr Quin providing the answers in his original book.
The mystery may be a little more easily solved than some other Christie's, as suggested by other reviews here. I am somewhat reluctant to admit this possibility as I have only ever managed to solve two mystery novels before the solution was given,and this was the first. That said, just because I solved it doesn't necessarily mean it's easier: different people are probably better suited for solving different mysteries.

To concluded: I loved this book and would read it again, but if your looking for a more standard Poirot (although every book is different in it's own right, so I'm not sure how you'd define this) or a similar read to 'The mysterious Mr Quin' then maybe this is not the book for you.
I would also recommend reading it after having read a couple of Poirot novels and maybe one of the Mr Quin short stories, but it's not essential.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A refreshingly light-hearted murder mystery, 3 Nov. 2010
By 
Jim J-R (West Sussex, UK) - See all my reviews
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Three Act Tragedy is an interesting and refreshingly different Christie novel. Poirot himself only appears as a minor character until the end and much of the legwork is done by a team of enthusiastic amateurs who were witnesses to the first crime.

The act structure seems a little out of place in a novel and somewhat forced perhaps to fit the title, the first two acts being mostly taken up with the setting up of the plot. The final act is almost the entire second half of the novel, and it is here that I found the story picking up.

The cast of characters is nicely varied, and the setting more loose than many of Christie's mysteries, with the investigators travelling to meet each of the well rounded but equally implausible suspects. I did get a slight inkling of who the perpetrator might be but was by no means certain once the time came for the big reveal. My one complaint would be that the killer's motive jars rather with some of their other activity in the novel, making it seem slightly less plausible.

Overall I enjoyed this book, which was presented with a much less formal style than some others, possibly due to the new choice of protagonist being somewhat different to Poirot's usual companions (I have since read that he has actually appeared in a number of other Christie stories without Poirot). Christie also manages to weave in a quite plausible love story to keep the characters distinct and alive.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Agatha Christie - Three Act Tragedy | Review, 22 Sept. 2013
By 
Three Act Tragedy is yet another of Agatha Christie's early novels, and all of them have one thing in common - they're excellent. Christie was at her best during the 1930s in my opinion, and it's certainly the decade that produced the majority of her most widely-adored novels.

It's also one of her most widely-imitated books - it pioneered a plot device that has since been used across many genres, but I don't want to spoil the surprise. It's a fantastic book that's well worth reading, so it's better to discover it yourself at your own time.

Since it features Poirot, Christie's unendingly enduring detective, one's forced to expect a certain standard of quality in Christie's writing, and she doesn't disappoint - Poirot is at his best, and the story-line will keep you guessing until the end, whichever edition you're reading.

As always, Christie is also self-referential, hinting at cases from The Mysterious Affair at Styles and At the "Bells and Motley"; likewise, she refers back to Three Act Tragedy in Hercule Poirot's Christmas and in The A.B.C. Murders, another of her finest works.

While this is far from Christie's greatest novel, it's still an excellent starting point for a new reader and widely recommended from me - as a general rule, read anything she released in the 1930s. And don't miss Death On the Nile, The A.B.C. Murders and And Then There Was None.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Three Act Tragedy, 22 Jun. 2012
By 
S Riaz "S Riaz" (England) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)    (TOP 10 REVIEWER)   
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Although a Poirot mystery, the great detective is on the fringes of the action in this novel. Attending a house party given by actor Sir Charles Cartwright, he witnesses the seizure and death of the gentle local pastor, Stephen Babbington. There seems to be no reason to suspect foul play, but Sir Charles and his friends Mr Satterthwaite and Sir Bartholomew Strange think the death suspicious. Later, Sir Batholomew Strange, a Harley Street specialist, gives a dinner including many of the guests present at the previous party, during which there is a similar death.

This is an enjoyable novel, with some interesting suspects - a cast which includes the owner of a dressmaking establishment, an ex-jockey, a playwright, a journalist, an actress and the delightfully named Lady Mary Lytton Gore and her daughter Egg. Poirot allows Sir Charles, Egg and the pleasant snob Mr Satterthwaite, to do most of the investigating. His true talent lies more in letting those little grey cells do the work. Although his input is minimal compared to other novels, this is an enjoyable read with great characters and Christie's usual excellent plot, which is always so difficult to work out. Her standard of work was so high that you cannot help being impressed every time you read one of her books.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


19 of 22 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Three-Act Delight, 9 Jan. 2003
By 
David Holland (Glasgow, Scotland) - See all my reviews
Two suspicious deaths in similar circumstances but with no apparent motive appeal to the well trained mind of the great Hercule Poirot.
I (like so many) watched (and enjoyed) many Poirot mysteries on TV and film but never actually thought of reading any of the stories until recently. Three-Act Tragedy was my first venture into the books of Agatha Christie and I must say I was pleasantly surprised. The plot revolves around the guests and staff who attended two parties (in particular, the people who were at both) in which there were similar deaths. The initial death was thought to be natural and only after the second was there any thought of murder. Unfortunately for the murderer, the famous detective Hercule Poirot (who was a guest at the first party) has decided to investigate the case.
I had not seen the TV adaptation of this book (if there is one) and therefore I was able to approach this mystery without knowing the ending, and it definitely made the book an intriguing read. There are the usual red herrings and plot twists you'd expect from Poirot, but up until he has his familiar gathering of the suspects you are not sure if the person you thought the murderer was 20 pages ago actually is (I got it wrong). Of course, once all is revealed it all makes sense.
This book was not a difficult read and once the characters have been established and the murders have been committed you can't help but turn the next page in the hope to get another clue. Having enjoyed this book I went on to read one other Poirot novel (The Murder of Roger Ackroyd) and hope to read another soon.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A very good read, 3 Oct. 2012
By 
Aaron (MELTON MOWBRAY, United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Three Act Tragedy was a very enjoyable read. As the title suggests, the novel is set into three acts and one of the main characters (Poirot not withstanding) is an actor, so it's a lovely play on words in that was, as well.

The book has the usual Poirot formula, a murder occurs, Hercule is there to witness it at a dinner party (why all criminals decide to act under the little Belgian's nose I never will truly guess), and an `outside of the law' investigation ensues in which Poirot and an assortment of everyday people begin to try and unravel the mystery.

As per usual, I thought, quite smugly, that I had seen through the mystery and simply knew who the murderer was. And, as per usual, I was wrong. These novels have a wonderful way of making the reader feel overly intelligent only to pull the rug out from under one's feet at the end.

I would highly recommend reading it, it was a good, if not totally solid read. I did not enjoy it as much as other Poirot novels, for reasons I can't quite put my finger one. This is why I gave it 4 instead of 5 stars.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Death at the Captain's table, 20 Jan. 2008
By 
Jane Baker "jan-bookcase" (Somerset) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Quintessential Christie. Recently I've been re-reading some of Christie's crime fiction and thoroughly enjoying myself. This I don't recall reading and I had to read it in 2 sittings - it drew me away from everything else and I totally forgot it was rainy January. This is original in approach - 3 Acts with Dramatis Personnae listed at the start - even costume design and direction. Intriguing; mystifying, with Poirot as enigmatic as always. This is a must for all Christie followers.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant,, 16 May 2014
By 
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I have read so many of Agatha Christie books and they never disappoint. Same goes for this one, keeps you interested and guessing to the end a must read if you like murder mysteries.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


‹ Previous | 1 2 3 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

This product

Three Act Tragedy: Complete & Unabridged
Three Act Tragedy: Complete & Unabridged by Agatha Christie (Audio CD - 19 Aug. 2002)
£16.99
In stock
Add to basket Add to wishlist
Only search this product's reviews