World Book Night: Spotlight on After the Funeral

On April 30, BHS will participate in World Book Night*, an annual event where people give away special editions of great books for free. BHS has been awarded with 20 copies of 4 different books. Between now and the 30th, we will highlight each of these four titles. In this post, After the Funeral by Agatha Christie, introduced by Mr. Lally.

* The national day for World Book Night is April 23, which falls during school vacation. 


Has there ever been anyone better at weaving a good mystery story than Agatha Christie? It’s like the old joke, “I don’t read Shakespeare – there are too many clichés in it” – when you read a Christie novel, so much of it seems familiar (the mysterious death, the inquest, the unflappable detective, the inevitable and unpredictable twist) mostly because so many authors have basically been trying to chase what Christie did so well.

There is very little I can reveal about the specifics of any mystery plot without ruining the fun, so I’ll give the very beginning – Following the funeral of an older member of a wealthy British family, among the mourning siblings and cousins, one family member states her doubts aloud that the death was of natural causes, as the family is so ready to believe. This accusation leads to a surprising chain of events, events which eventually lead to the desk of Hercule Poirot, Christie’s most memorable detective.

Well-written, engaging and ultimately stunning in its reveal, this is consummate Christie – which is to say, an excellent murder mystery.

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