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Sparkling Cyanide by Agatha Christie (1943)



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Showing 1-5 of 24 (next | show all)
Very good off-series Christie, closely related to Three Act Tragedy and A Pocket Full of Rye, and expanded from the Poirot story "Yellow Iris"; there's a dazzling sleight-of-hand in one of the early chapters that is incredibly brazen.
  middlemarchhare | Nov 25, 2015 |
An entertaining whodunit - kept guessing until the end. ( )
  cazfrancis | Sep 14, 2015 |
I must have read this copy of Remembered Death (also published under the way better title of Sparkling Cyanide) several dozen times as a youth. The cover held a fascination for me, featuring a group of three party guests with a grinning skull looming behind them like a sinister moon. The story itself is not actually as creepy as the cover might lead you to believe, but it does provide plenty of guesswork and opportunities to be wrong in identifying the culprit. On this particular reread I remembered who had done it but couldn't remember how or why, but what little foreknowledge I had did not reduce my enjoyment of the story.

This was originally a short story called "Yellow Iris", which served as the basis for the Poirot episode of the same name. Poirot is not in Remembered Death, however; the detective role is much smaller and is filled by Colonel Race. Therefore, those who want to try an Agatha that doesn't feature one of her marquee detectives might want to try this one. ( )
  rabbitprincess | Aug 22, 2015 |
It's been a year since Rosemary Barton died at a party in her honor. The inquest verdict was suicide, but someone has been sending anonymous notes to her husband, George, suggesting that Rosemary was murdered. George has a plan to unmask the murderer. He invites the same guests to a party in his sister-in-law, Iris's, honor, to be held at the same location. However, things don't turn out according to plan. Did Rosemary commit suicide a year ago, or was she really murdered? If so, who killed her? Was it her husband, George? Or George's secretary, the competent Ruth Lessing, who may have a secret passion for her boss? Or Rosemary's admirer, Anthony Browne, who may not be the man he appears to be? Or her other admirer, Conservative MP Stephen Farraday? Or his jealous wife, Lady Alexandra Farraday? Or could it have been her sister and heir, Iris Marle? George Barton's friend, Colonel Race, is on the scene, and he lends his experience to Scotland Yard as they investigate not one, but two murders.

This novel has a ring of familiarity to it even without the presence of one of Christie's more famous sleuths. The characters and plot bear many similarities to a Poirot short story, “Yellow Irises”, although Christie changed enough that one is not a spoiler for the other. There are also some structural similarities to Five Little Pigs (aka Murder in Retrospect). Even though the story lacks something in originality for readers familiar with Christie's earlier works, she gives the familiar elements a new twist that will leave readers guessing. ( )
  cbl_tn | Feb 18, 2015 |
Dame Agatha never fails to entertain and intrigue with her mysteries. This one involves the fateful deaths of two people, and the web of intrigue surrounding them. Not a Miss Marple or Hercule Poirot, but still involving excellent detective work and well-drawn characters. The plot kept me guessing until the last minute. ( )
  LadyoftheLodge | Jul 28, 2014 |
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» Add other authors (28 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Agatha Christieprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Ahmavaara, EeroTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Anthony, NigelNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Bailey, RobinNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Nyquist, GunvorTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Six people were thinking of

Rosemary Barton

who had died nearly a year ago...
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Iris Marle was thinking about her sister, Rosemary.
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This book was published as Remembered Death in the US and Sparkling Cyanide in the UK. It is based on a short story Yellow Iris, which featured Hercule Poirot as the detective.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0312981295, Mass Market Paperback)

It's been less than a year since beautiful heiress Rosemary Barton took her own life during a birthday dinner in her honor. Her husband George never believed that his fun-loving wife would commit suicide--especially now that he's received two anonymous letters that suggest cold-blooded murder. One implicates even George himself. It's true he long suffered Rosemary's infidelities. But what about her embittered sister who was left out of the family will? Or any of Rosemary's secret lovers, not to mention their betrayed wives? Now one of them has ever forgotten Rosemary. Nor has any one of them ever forgiven her. But only one of them killed her...

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:23:35 -0400)

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Six people sit down to dinner at a table laid for seven. In front of the empty place is a sprig of rosemary, in solemn memory of Rosemary Barton, who died at the same table, exactly one year previously.

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