Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Book #13: The Golden Ball and Other Stories

It's no secret that I love Agatha Christie. I think I was in 9th or 10th grade when I first read And Then There Were None, and I was hooked. She is a master of the red herring, and even though I've since read about a jillion murder mysteries, she still manages to keep me guessing to the end. Speaking of a jillion murder mysteries, I was listening to a podcast about books yesterday (I know, so surprising), and they mentioned that Agatha Christie had written like 80-something books and she is considered the expert on "murder by poison." I love geeky facts like that.
This book is a collection of Christie's short stories, and I found this collection to be super interesting, not because of the stories themselves, but because of the way in which they were arranged. The book starts off with fluff mysteries - no one actually gets hurt, usually a funny misunderstanding, etc. - but by the end, the stories transition to serious and somewhat heartbreaking. The last story in particular, "Next to a Dog," made me so sad and uncomfortable that I almost wish I hadn't read it. It's almost like the editors tried to soften the blow by starting the compilation off lukewarm and slowly heating the pot until it was scalding.
I still enjoy her novels more, but this assemblage is enjoyable for all Christie fans.