For an instant the two trains ran together, side by side. In that frozen moment, Elspeth witnessed a murder.
Helplessly, she stared out of her carriage window as a man remorselessly tightened his grip around a woman’s throat. The body crumpled. Then the other train drew away.
But who, apart from Miss Marple, would take her story seriously? After all, there were no suspects, no other witnesses… and no corpse.
Trust Miss Marple to realize that a crime has taken place even where there was no proof whatsoever.
This book also referenced ‘A Murder is Announced‘ as the first time Miss Marple met Inspector Craddock. What a lovely story and a delightful setting. I also learnt about tontines. I recently got into a very intense discussion / argument with someone who said only non-fiction was worth reading because fiction doesn’t teach one anything – this person completely disregarded everything one gains from fiction and just brought it down to educational content and instruction. Well, this book taught me what tontines were. So take that.
Getting back to this book – families can be strange and people can be cruel and coincidences can happen. The thing is, I never find Christie books to be so unbelievable, even though it’s obviously fiction and obviously written as entertainment. It’s just that she portrays her characters so vividly that you just get to know then and often come to like and appreciate them.
That’s how I felt about Lucy Eyelesbarrow here. A bright young woman who made herself an invaluable resource in life, and one for Miss Marple in this story. I wish there were more such collaborative tales between these two. I haven’t read all her books yet, so there may just be hope, but I have a feeling it’s unlikely. Let’s see.
As for this book, it’s a quick, interesting read, and as always, I definitely recommend Agatha Christie, and +1 for Lucy alone.