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After the Funeral (Poirot) Paperback – 6 May 2008

4.3 out of 5 stars 73 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollins; Masterpiece Ed edition (6 May 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0007119364
  • ISBN-13: 978-0007119363
  • Product Dimensions: 11.1 x 2.5 x 17.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (73 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 153,420 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

“Keeps us guessing – and guessing wrongly – to the very last page”
Liverpool Post

From the Back Cover

When Cora Lansquenet is savagely murdered with a hatchet, the extraordinary remark she made the previous day at her brother Richard s funeral suddenly takes on a chilling significance. At the reading of Richard s will, Cora was clearly heard to say, It s been hushed up very nicely, hasn t it. But he was murdered, wasn t he?

In desperation, the family solicitor turns to Hercule Poirot to unravel the mystery. " --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
Yes, despite all Agatha Christie's other top-notch mysteries 'After the Funeral' is my favourite. I have read it several times. The Abernethie family are portrayed with considerable depth and their family home, Enderby Hall, is described in a way that conveys real atmosphere. The events in the story (without giving anything too much away) include a bombshell dropped by an old aunt after a family funeral, an axe murder, poisoned wedding cake and an electrifying climax in the ancestral home courtesy of M. Poirot. An absolute classic!
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Format: Paperback
Richard Abernethie, head of the large rambling and more importantly rich Abernethie family is dead, and the remnants of the family gather together in the family’s large country mansion house for his funeral. The person who makes the most impact at the funeral is Richard’s youngest sister, Cora, whom the rest of the family have not seen for years, who in her very own way of making inappropriate remarks, comments that “But he was murdered wasn’t he?”
Richard’s death which up until that point hadn’t been considered suspect is closely analysed by the members of the family and especially by the family’s solicitor Mr Entwhistle, whose suspicions are substantially increased when only a day after the funeral Cora herself is murdered in a frenzied hatchet attack.
The obvious motive is money and with Cora’s share of Richard’s will now being split amongst the other family members, Mr Entwhistle begins to make enquiries as to everyone’s whereabouts on the day of Cora’s murder. When he feels he has taken things as far as they can go he calls in a favour of an old friend, a certain M. Hercule Poirot.
The novel is very typically Christie with the various members of the family all having their own little secrets as to their real whereabouts and motives. Poirot poses as the head of a foreign charity planning to buy the house for refugees and thereby gains access to their movements.
It’s always quite hard to say when a Christie novel is set, as she very rarely mentions dates.
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Format: Paperback
"It begins, all this, at a funeral. Or rather, to be exact, after the funeral!"

So this is the first Poirot novel I've read and am reading as part of my World Book Night challenge. Having only read one other Christie novel (I know...shameful) this follows the formulaic template but then why change what works?

There's a lot of characters at the start which you have to get your head around. The chapters are split into parts each dedicated to a different character which does mean you get a thorough overview of the characters and as alibis are deconstructed there are snippets of clues to be had. I still didn't work out who did it although afterwards you realise that the clues were there!

Although this is a Poirot novel, for about the first two-thirds of the novel the investigating is conducted by Entwhistle, the family solicitor. It's only much later that Poirot is brought in - almost as a closer! It was around page 107 when he's first mentioned and this is how he's introduced (made me chuckle!):

"There were no curves in the room. Almost the only exception was Hercule Poirot himself who was full of curves. His stomach was pleasantly rounded, his head resembled an egg in shape, and his moustaches curved upwards in a flamboyant flourish."

With rather a good twist that is well wrapped up rather nicely at end, if not a little too quickly, a must read for all Poirot and Christie fans!
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Format: Paperback
Following the funeral of Richard Abernethie, his surviving family gather to hear the will. Discussing the man's sudden death, his odd sister, Cora Lansquanet, opines that the matter has been hushed-up very well. After all, she says, he was murdered, wasn't he? Having set the cat amongst the pigeons, Cora herself is found murdered, presumably to ensure she couldn't name her brother's murderer.

Maybe this is not one of Ms Christie's best, but it is a clever puzzle, and there is a strong sense of times changing, as the ancient family prepares to watch their ancestral home pass into the hands of strangers, perhaps to be redeveloped into apartments. As always with Ms Christie's work, the story is full of clues and red-herrings, with every member of the family having something to hide and some motive for the murder. Poirot is fully the equal of everyone, and anyone who tries to deceive his "little grey cells", is wasting their time. This may not be the best of Ms Christie's books, but it is a very satisfying tale.
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Format: Paperback
Christie's last classic performance, playing (as she did in the 1930s) on the genre's conventions. Here, a wealthy old man is cremated without any suspicion of foul play arising until his sister asks 'He was murdered, wasn't he?', whereupon she is battered to death. The family lawyer calls in Poirot, who functions late, but very effectively. Clueing top-notch standard job, including two brilliant devices (the mirror and the wax flowers) dangled lovingly (yet tantalisingly out of reach) before the reader's very nose. Murderer's identity as brilliant as the plot used to camouflage the murder, and, as a character, ranks with those in Lord Edgware Dies and Five Little Pigs.
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