Endless Night Hardcover – 1967
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Ambitious young Michael Rogers - the narrator of the story - falls in love with Fenella Guteman (Ellie) the first time he sets eyes on her in the mysterious yet scenic 'Gipsy's Acre', complete with its sea-view and dark fir trees. Before long, he has both the land and the woman, but rumors are spreading of a curse hanging over the land. Not heeding the locals' warnings, the couple take up residence at 'Gipsy's Acre', leading to a devastating tragedy.
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Top Customer Reviews
To give you what you're looking for without comparing this book with others, I found Endless Night to be a fantastic mystery. It is the only Christie that I have read more than once. It's wonderfully creepy, although not a traditional "murder mystery." A few very well placed surprises catch you off your guard and make this one of the most original books she's written. I highly recommend it.
I also recommend that you move on to another web page. You've got to be careful when reading reviews of mysteries. Someone's bound to say too much, which is the case here. I strongly, STRONGLY urge you to read no further in these critiques.
Endless Night is quite different from any of her other more famous titles. There is no Poirot or Marple - the story is narrated by Michael Rodgers, a somewhat feckless young man with ideas of grandeur but no obvious means of attaining it. A chance encounter and a whirlwind romance result in him marrying the very lovely and very wealthy Ellie, and the fulfilment of a dream when they build a house on Gipsy's Acre. But the land is cursed, and the spectre of tragedy hangs over the newlyweds like a very black cloud.
Most of Agatha Christie's books can best be described as cracking thrillers. But Endless Night almost has the feel of a ghost story or a horror tale. There is a real sense of invisible menace from the first page, and it makes for a somewhat uncomfortable, disquieting, read.
I had, from the start, developed a sneaking suspiscion as to the outcome (although murder does not occur until the last quarter or so). There are not that many characters to choose from. But the murder and the unmasking of the killer, means and motive seem to take a back seat to a very chilling tale of human desires and weaknesses. These are far more shocking and memorable when you turn the final page.
In this book we meet Michael Rogers; a rather shiftless young man, whose aimless lifestyle is about to change when he comes across the beautiful young Ellie outside a ruined house called ‘The Towers’, but known to local as Gipsy’s Acre. Michael had the area in mind for the house of his dreams, but does not have the means to build or buy it. However, Ellie turns out to a wealthy heiress and, before long they have married secretly with the help of Ellie’s companion Greta. Soon, Ellie has commissioned the building of their dream house on Gipsy’s Acre – even though both Michael and Ellie have been warned off by old Mrs Lee, who insists that the land has been cursed by gypsies, who were turned off the land.
From the beginning, you feel that something terrible will happen and this is a dark novel, with many plot twists and turns and a surprising ending. I am delighted that I finally got around to reading it and that, as always, Agatha Christie did not disappoint.
Written in the first person, young poor drifter Michael Rogers tells of his story of discovering the mystical and enchanting location of Gypsy's Acre. The current building that occupies the land is for sales and penniless Michael dreams of building his perfect house there, designed of course by the mysterious architect Santonix, who Michael has met during his duties as chauffeur to the rich.
All Michael needs though is the money to build the house with and the girl to marry and live there. Solving both of these requirements is rich heiress Fenella (Ellie) Guteman who Michael bumps into by chance whilst viewing Gypsy's Acre. The two young people fall for each other and after a whirlwind romance they are married in secret, much to the displeasure of Ellie's extended family who seem quite concerned that Michael might be a gold digging rogue, only after Ellie's money.
The couple decide that they will build their dream house on Gypsy's Acre and they engaged Santonix to perform the work. The only grey cloud on the horizon is the creepy and possibly sinister figure of Mrs Lee, a villager and gypsy who claims that the land the Rogers are building on belongs to the gypsys and woe betide anyone who plans to live there.
I found it was one of those Christie novels where you can guess who the victim is going to be and who the murderer is almost immediately, but that's not to say the book is any less enjoyable for that. The writing style, as I say, is almost poetic in approach and she really creates an atmosphere of brooding evil around the location of Gypsy's Acre.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Never a fan of Crime fiction or Whodunnits, I did not "discover" Agatha Christie until I became a pensioner! Read morePublished 3 months ago by Meretseger
The TV production obviously gave away the main plot, but the story as told by AC herself has a few more twists in it. A tad slow in places, but a very good read.Published 4 months ago by J. Osborne
Unfortunately, after coming off the high of And Then There Were None, this book fell short. Way short. Read morePublished 5 months ago by S. Shamma
A great read. I understand this was published after Agatha Christie's death and I found it very different from her usual style . Read morePublished 5 months ago by Elizabeth Vickers
Typical Agatha Christie - you think you have worked it all out but always last minute surprise - really good readPublished 6 months ago by AH of Kent