Death on the Nile is a Agatha Christie detective story, another story concerning Hercule Poirot, the detective. I was very deceived by this book. I expected a story about the trivialities of 1920s & 30s life set in Egypt (well, I was right, geographically.) I was wrong. The somewhat idiomatic writing style of the time was off-putting at first, when in fact it made it all the more enthralling.
Agatha Christie gives us a group of characters thrown together on a trip to Egypt. This melange includes a romance writer and her bored daughter; a woman and her son; a French maid; a Czech doctor and, most importantly, a young couple on their honeymoon who are seemingly ‘devoted’ to one another. But is it all as it seems?
Something that these books give us is a peek into the somewhat grimy underbelly of society that existed 80 years ago. We don’t need Julian Fellowes with his quill pen.
Over the course of the story, the illusions of beauty and society are shattered. The society beauties of the story are just as crazy and unhinged as any one else. Titles and money mean nothing when you keep a pearl-encrusted pistol in your handbag/ garter.
One of the characters, Cornelia, is on the Egypt trip with her difficult aunt, Maria, and the moment when she stands up to her aunt on the matter of her marrying someone who is neither titled nor young was an admirable scene. When Cornelia bravely told her aunt that age and titles (or lack thereof) didn’t matter, I really silently cheered. Sad, isn’t it? cheering for a 80-year-old book’s female secondary character.
I think I will definitely read more Agatha Christie books in the future. Just not yet…as I have a huge pile of other books to pour through first.
Happy reading! 🙂