Short Book Reviews: The Lost Gallows, The Mysterious Affair At Styles & Murder On The Links

Hello everyone,

here are the reviews of three detective stories. Enjoy!

The Lost Gallows by John Dickson Carr
A car comes to a halt in front of the Brimstone Club. The driver is dead. He’s not the only victim either. Jack Ketch (he was an infamous English executioner whose name has also become a synonym for the devil) before killing his victims, hunts them, sending them a miniature gibbet. French detective Bencolin is called to investigate. Although great at his job, Bencolin is not a very likable character. He just comes off as haughty and rather sinister. None of the other characters are particularly interesting either. The best character in the book, if it can so be called, is the atmosphere. It’s gloomy and eerie and it makes reading the book a quite uneasy experience. The plot itself is full of turns and red-herrings and just when you think you have discovered who the culprit his, the author pulls in another twist that completely surprise. All in all, a very well-written book that will make you want to turn the page to find out what happens next. I just wish it featured a nicer detective.
Available at: amazon
Rating: 3.5/5

The Mysterious Affair At Styles by Agatha Christie
This is the first novel written by Agatha Christie. It is also the first to feature Belgian detective Poirot, and his sidekick Captain Hastings. Hastings is invited by his old friend, John Cavendish, to stay at Styles Court. While there, John’s step-mother, the rich Emily Inglethorpe is murdered. Poisoned with strychnine, while she is completely alone in her bedroom with all the doors locked from the inside. Poirot is called to investigate. There are lots of suspects but, thanks to its little grey cells, the famous detective straight away spots important clue that will lead him to the murderer. The reader instead, like poor Hastings, will often be confused by the many red herrings in the book. This is a very impressive, well-written and well-crafted first novel that I highly recommend.
Available at: Project Gutenberg
Rating: 4/5

Murder On The Links by Agatha Christie
Poirot is summoned by Monsieur Renauld. But when he arrives, the man is dead. Poirot decides to investigate. The French police is investigating too. Inspector Giraud is completely different from Poirot. While the Belgian detective uses his little grey cells to solve crimes, Giraud is instead very active, exploring crime scenes and looking everywhere for clues. The two detectives, who are working separately, are trying to outdo each other which results in some very funny scenes. The plot is quite complicated, full of twists, turns and false clues. The reader is hooked from the start and eagerly turns each page to discover who the culprit is. As always, the final revelation is a big surprise. Overall, this is a very entertaining read you won’t be able to put down!
Available at: amazon
Rating: 4/5

Have you read these books? If so, what did you think of them?

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