The Secrets Of The Chimneys : Review


Book :    The Secret Of The Chimneys
Author :  Agatha Christie

Genre` :  Crime Fiction
Year :     1925
My Ratings : 4.5/5

The majestic abode of Lord Caterham finds itself deep in murder, blackmail, gem heist, Royals in disguise,codes cracking,symbols, thefts ,deceit and home to many unwelcoming subjects and matters of International importance!

PLOT
Lord Caterham, the simple and noble aristocrat becomes a reluctant host to a party,finds his mansion as a place of murder and deceit. He instantly warms up to the friendship of a complete stranger Anthony Cade. Along with Chief Superintendent Battle of Scotland Yard and many other characters Chimneys becomes the grounds of double crossings, murder and blackmails with a sensitive International sitaution.The young,rich widow and dangerously beautiful Virginia Revel assists all situations along with Bundle,Lord Caterham's daughter.Finally the day is saved,but only after a second murder and much much mystery.

REVIEW
Unlike the works of the organised Poirot or the simple ways of the seemingly haphazard Miss Marple, its more like an adventurous rom-com of today's era written earlier.
First edition Cover

Such is  the adventure dose and thrill level of the book!
Even if you recognize the culprit mid-way, it does not lessen the adrenaline by an ounce! Explosions and flying cars, Revolution of Herzoslovakia, a diamond heist ..... and all this I get from a book of 1925!

It is almost a parlour mystery.
The book is pleasant to start with but somewhere just prior to the middle. I correctly guessed the culprit! Too bad! 
Because from there on, everything they did, every question they asked it was like 'Why are they not working on this thread which was so apparent ?" Here it becomes the 'living' example of skill of writing . That I still enjoyed reading it even if I could see through every trap and confusion Christie was throwing my way, calls for an applause. 
That's why I call her a Master story teller.

CHARACTERS

I like the lead characters for their layered nature and rich (in every sense of the word) personalities.

There is the ruggedly attractive Anthony Cade effusing the adventurous charm and quick brains with sufficient brawn!
And the elusive King Victor ..
 AND
There are doubts about the hero himself.....now we trust him, now we don't. It's almost like he loves me , he loves me not. Keeps us on tenterhooks

The beautiful and ravishing Virginia Revel,widow of a former British ambassador to Herzoslovakia. She has charm, intelligence, wit, adventurous heart and yet a simplicity. Too dangerous a combination.

Then the sporty and peppy Bundle Brent destined to be the heroine in  a later book! she makes her first appearance here.She later blooms as an amateur detective in 'The Seven Dials Mystery' .She is described here as a 'very charming young Lady' and we can easily perceive her rash driving and the pluck of her persona in the brief conversation she had with Cade.

Another cover which
I liked it 
The darling and my favourite character hapless widower Lord Caterham.  Repulsively rich and careless ,a simpleton and a private person,he hates politicians,their meetings and is fully dependent on his butler Tredwell and Bundle ,his over-zealous daughter.
VERDICT
The book was a pleasant change from Poirot and Miss Marple as the protagonist not only uses her/his grey cells and imagination but is also active.
After reading it, I felt as if I have been through the Chimneys without moving out of my quilt .

Recommended.

The UNEXPECTED :)
Its the  unexpected  romance I got in the last pages and I am glad of it. Throughout the story, the romance was true to the Christie style, subtle and delicate but with a brawny 'princely' hero and a Taylor-ish heroine, this time its a bit seething royal. Loved it.
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24 comments:

  1. I have always loved to read your reviews, crips, the flow is superb and no beating round the bush :) I like the verdict section as well, all in all a very good review post babe :)

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    1. Hey dear girl..love you so much that forgets to read what you comment .Your name is enough to make my day :)
      Thanks for just being here ...and everything girl-friend :)

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    1. Thanks a lot Sir.I am glad you liked it . :)

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  3. I would choose this to be a nice abode and party :D
    The unexpected romance should have been a big boost there :)

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    1. He He He Teny ...had it been adapted as a movie...man, you would have ripped it apart :)
      and I would have enjoyed it even more then :)
      After all lazy crabs like me are the only ones to miss the Vampire Owl's,bat's and Dracula's original authentic dialogue/s :P :)
      Thanks for your gracious presence :)

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  4. I remember reading Agatha Christie during my school days..I used to get hooked till last days..Good to find your review here..

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    1. And its so good to see you here Roohi ..
      Thanks girl and welcome to my blog :)

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  5. I LOVE Agatha Christie! This is one of her books that I haven't read, but seeing your 4.5/5 rating, I'll try picking it up whenever I can :)

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    1. Thanks Ami :) Glad to see you on this page as a fellow Christie Lover :) This one is sure good !

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    1. Thanks Yogi ... you will also like the book :)

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  7. Long time since I read a mystery novel.
    Great review done, Kokila.

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    1. Well Indrani .. your Faces of India are no less than a mystery series... All have stories behind them .. their eyes giving but a little glimpse of their souls .
      thanks for the appreciation friend :)

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  8. Somehow missed reading this novel of Agatha Christie. I will definitely read it soon. Just now restarted the classic And then there were none...

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    1. You are right Meoww in calling it a classic. Though when I read I was miffed because our Bollywood movies (at-least 10 ) have borrowed its plot either fully or in parts and have made a Bhel- Poori of it :(
      The book is indeed good .. hope you will soon grab this one too :)

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  9. I've already read and loved the book, still I enjoyed reading your review.

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    1. Its great to know that you have already read it Kiran !!I think we should make a Sisters in Crime sort of fan-club for her and discuss one book each month !! Kya vichaar hai ? :)

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    2. Badhiya vicchar hai! I'd love to. :) I love Agatha Christie, and have read all her books, except the Big Four.
      Hope you had a great day! :)

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    3. ye hui na Baat ! love n cheers :)

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  10. I love reading Agatha Christie. I will now immediately go and see if it is there in my reader.

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    1. Yeah Mridula do check ... As per em , its certainly one of her good works .. and I was just telling Kiran about the fan-club .. can see the potential members are growing :)

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  11. Great review Kokila, Agatha Christie is one of my favorite author... :)

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    1. Thank you for your appreciation for the review :) I am glad to know you like her writings ..
      And a BIG Welcome to my blog Arpita :)

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