Agatha Christie came across in my life at different moments. First I saw my brother reading her stories, years ago. Then I went to see two of her plays (I wrote about them here – The Mousetrap & And Then There Were None). After watching the plays I actually wrote a blog post about interesting facts from Christie’s life. I also saw the “Murder on the Orient Express” movie. And finally, I ended up reading one of her books – “Death on the Nile” – recommended by Diana from Thoughts on Papyrus.

Death on the Nile in a nutshell

The book is a detective story. It focuses on solving the mystery around a death that happened during a cruise on the Nile, in Egypt. The plot revolves around a rich and famous woman, caught in a romantic triangle. The other passengers of the ship … well, they all look normal on the outside, but weird and untrustworthy on the inside. Luckily, detective Hercule Poirot is on board of the ship, on holiday – the right man at the right place 🙂

An interesting fact is that Agatha Christie wrote the story inspired by her visits to Egypt – first she went for 3 months in Cairo at the age of 20, then later she spent 20 years in Middle East area with her husband, who was an archaeologist.

Overall impression

I enjoyed a lot reading “Death on the Nile” – it is a page turner, and I am happy I read it on holiday because I had time and energy to delve into it and finish it very quickly. It certainly made me curious to read more stories by Agatha Christie!

Given the title of the book, I was expecting the death to happen at the beginning of the book and the story to be more about solving it. But it does not happen that way, and I find rather interesting how Agatha Christie built the structure of the story line. First the reader has time to get to know the characters and create his/her own opinion on them (guided by the narrator). So when the death actually happens, the reader can already have a guess and get “involved” in solving the mystery. And I find that brilliant!

Reading the book while being on holiday – priceless

Hercule Poirot

Reading “Death on the Nile” was actually my first encounter with Hercule Poirot as character. Overall I liked him – he’s a witty guy, bit drama queen at times, but efficient in solving the mystery while also keeping the an air of suspense. However, I was not impressed … maybe because I already saw the Sherlock BBC series, and I am more of a Sherlock fan. But I can imagine meeting Poirot 10-15 years ago and being totally hooked!

Egypt memories

After I started reading the book I realized that I visited Egypt (more than 15 years ago) and I also went on a cruise on the Nile during that holiday! So at times I had déjà vu feelings, for instance during the visit to Abu Simbel temple. It is an interesting experience to read a book that takes place in a setting you’ve visited, it is much easier to imagine the action and to relate to the characters.

The impressive Ramses II’s temple at Abu Simbel. Photo: Getty Images

Movie coming soon

Exciting times are coming – a modern version of the “Death on the Nile” movie will be released this autumn! Despite already knowing the story, I am very much looking to see the play transposed to film. The story is rich in details and has many characters, so I think is has potential to be a successful movie.

Below is the trailer of the movie, if you’re interesting to take a look.

 

Wrap-up

To conclude, I do recommend reading “Death on the Nile” by Agatha Christie if you’re into detective mysteries or if you are looking for a captivating book during your holiday. While not being a “heavy” read, it is a witty mystery story that will keep you hooked until the final page.

What book(s) by Agatha Christie should I read next? What would be your top 3 recommendations?

‘Till next time … happy reading!

Georgiana


Cover picture adapted from the official poster of the “Murder on the Nile” (2020)

4 thoughts on “Poirot not-so-much on holiday in Egypt: Death on the Nile by Agatha Christie (book review)

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