Buy “Ordeal by Innocence (Audible Audio Edition) Agatha Christie, Hugh Fraser, HarperAudio Books” Online
Another great book by Agatha Christie! Two years after the murder of their adopted mother and subsequent imprisonment of one of her children, a witness steps forth to clear the man found guilty. Alas, it’s too late for him, as he died 6 months into his sentence. That means, though, that someone else did it. A burglary gone wrong is out of the question, so it can only be one of them. ..but which one? As in several of her other books, Christie focuses on what suspicions can do to those that are innocent. Mrs. Argyle can’t have children, and in the way that women do who have too much money (yes, Angelina and Madonna) do, she adopts several children. Most of these children had unfortunate starts, but she doesn’t care about that. She will ensure they want for nothing. And while she never tried to make them feel they weren’t her children, she did expect them to be grateful for everything they’d been given. And people don’t like to be reminded constantly of how grateful they should be. I don’t like being beholden to anyone for this very reason. Each of her children dislike her, and the "nature over nurture" controversy is squarely settled on the side of nature in this book. The ending is a little far fetched. I don’t pretend to know how police worked in the 50’s in England, but I find it hard to believe that they’d give a civilian details in an ongoing case, whether he’s the witness and a doctor or not. It’s a bit reminiscent of "Towards Zero" but overall, a great read. Check it out!
Ordeal by Innocence Audible Audiobook – Unabridged Agatha Christie (Author), Review
Ordeal By Innocence shows that even in her later years the inimitable Dame Agatha Christie could write an exciting story of murder! The novel was first published in 1959 and was one of Dame Christie s favorite novels. Poirot and Miss Marple do not appear in the story but that does not impede its suspense and surprising ending. The Plot": Jacko Argyle was an orphan rescued by the matronly Mrs Argyle. Years later she was found murdered after being bludgeoned to death. Jacko had a bad reputation and was quickly arrested for the crime. He died of pneumonia whilst in prison. After several years a man named Dr. Arthur Calgary turns up at the Argyle home. He suffered from amnesia at the time of the murder but now remembers Jacko was a hitchhiker the night of the murder’; Calgary picked him up so Jacko could not be the murderer. That leaves the rest of the Argyle family and friends as suspectsof the dastardly dead. Those suspects are":Mary Durrant who is the Argyles daughter. Her husband Philip Durrant was a pilot in World War II but is now crippled. He is also an amateur sleuth who seeks to solve the murder case. Michael Argyle works as a car salesman but dreams of working the oil fields of Persia. Tina Argyle is of mixed race . She works as a quiet librarian. Hester Argyle is a rebellious daughter who has appeared on the stage. (all these adult children were adopted by the Argyles when they were children) Widower Leo Argyle is involved in a romantic relationship with Gwenda Vaught his longtime secretary Miss Kirsty Lindstrom is the longtime housekeeper for the wealthy Argyles. The Argyles are a very dysfunctional family! Match your wits with the police and Doctor Arthur Calgary in solving this case. Christie shows more psychological depth and develops her characters more in this book than in many of her works. Recommended!The widower Leo Argyle is in a romantic relationship with his secretary Gwenda Vaughn -Read Reviews-
I read this twice, thinking that the first time though I must have missed something, but I was right: the resolution does not hang together at all. I’ll try not to spoil the ending to demonstrate what I mean. If Jacko was tried for his mother’s murder, and if everyone who knew him felt sure that he was dishonest, wicked, horrible, etc., and if he had an accomplice in the murder of his mother, wouldn’t he have named that accomplice at his arrest? Would he REALLY have gone through an entire murder trial and never breathed a word or "blown the gaff" on his accomplice?! Jacko’s MO was always to blame someone else. ..but he kept his mouth shut in the face of a life sentence?! I’m sorry, but this ending was as implausible as it is weak. I’ve read nearly all of Christie’s murder mysteries and can say that the ones she wrote in the 1950s and especially 60s were extremely uneven in terms of plot, characterization, and denouement. This one falls in that category. And there are too many instances of older men winning the affection of 19-year-old girls for my taste. I think AC should have written fewer books and concentrated much more on turning out mysteries at the level of which she was capable. Give this one a pass.