This is wonderful collection of stories which show off the brilliant deductive powers of Hercule Poirot. While the stories themselves are much simpler than a full-fledged Christie novel, the puzzles are classic in style, filled with twists and seemingly impossible situations. These stories also place an emphasis on the relationship between Poirot and Hastings. Each story poking fun in some way at their various quirks and foibles, yet always emphasizing their admiration and affection for each other.
The cases are diverse, and it’s not just murders that Poirot investigates, but robbery, kidnapping, and blackmail. There are of course some which I enjoyed more than others—
The Million Dollar Bond Robbery
Phillip Ridgeway, who “occupied a position of trust” at the London and Scottish Bank was sent to America on the ocean liner Olympia, with a million dollars’ worth of bonds in specially sealed portmanteau. Only hours before reaching New York the bonds are stolen from his stateroom. Yet before the ship has even docked, some of the bonds have already been sold! Poirot asks a few questions and the culprit emerges.
The Disappearance of Mr. Davenheim
The papers are full of the disappearance of Mr. Davenheim, the senior partner of a firm of well-known bankers and financiers. The police are baffled, yet Poirot believes that he can solve the mystery without ever leaving his apartment. Inspector Japp lays the evidence before him and after some stirring of “the little grey cells” Poirot tells Japp exactly where he may find Mr. Davenheim.
This is a great book for reading in between others, as I did. One story a day—and it came in handy for cleansing my palate after some exceptionally poor reads. Very much recommend!
My Judgment – 4.25/5
Vintage Mystery Extravaganza – 2013 Scattergories – #15 Cops & Robbers: a book that features a theft rather than murder: The Adventure of “The Western Star”, The Million Dollar Bond Robbery, The Disappearance of Mr. Davenheim, etc.