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Carte in tavola by Agatha Christie
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2,459472,500 (3.78)137
Title:Carte in tavola
Authors:Agatha Christie
Collections:Your library
Tags:Fiction, Detective and mystery stories, Hercule Poirot series, Book 13, Mephistophelean Mr. Shaitana arranges a little party with four detectives: Hercule Poirot, the Scotland Yard's Superintendent Battle, the Colonel Race of His Majesty's Secret Service, and Ariadne Oliver the mystery novelist, and with four individuals who have got away with murder: Dr. Roberts, Mrs. Lorrimer, Major John Despard and Anne Meredith, Mr Shaitana is found dead, Can the four detectives discover which of the other four guests is the killer? First published, under the title: "Cards on the Table", by Collins Crime Club, London, November 2, 1936, 288 pp., by Dodd, Mead and Company, New York, 1937, First Italian edition, under the title: "Carte in tavola", Mondadori, Milano, 1938, I libri gialli, n. 191, translated by Tito N. Sarego, 260 pp.; republished, under the same title, by Mondadori, 1983, I classici del giallo, n. 429, translated by Grazia Griffini, 206 pp., Film version: "Cards on the Table", Film TV, March 19, 2006, directed by Sarah Harding, starring: David Suchet as Hercule Poirot, Zoë Wanamaker as Ariadne Oliver, David Westhead as Supt. Jim Wheeler (Supt. Battle), Robert Pugh as Colonel Hughes (Colonel Race), Tristan Gemmill as Despard, Alex Jennings as Dr Roberts, Lesley Manville as Mrs Lorrimer, Lyndsey Marshal as Anne Meredith, Alexander Siddig as Shaitana, Honeysuckle Weeks as Miss Dawes, [Sc. 10 u.]

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Cards on the Table by Agatha Christie (1936)

  1. 20
    Mrs. McGinty's Dead by Agatha Christie (Porua)
    Porua: Hercule Poirot with Mrs. Oliver once again after Cards on the Table. This is reason enough for anyone who has enjoyed their first outing together to read this book.
  2. 00
    The Mary Wesmacott Collection by Mary Westmacott (iz)

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» See also 137 mentions

English (45)  Spanish (1)  Danish (1)  All languages (47)
Showing 1-5 of 45 (next | show all)
I had already made up my mind halfway through the book that this is getting no more than 3 stars. The last few chapters turned around and the mystery became a thriller.
Supreme detective work by M.Poirot this time. He put his cards on the table at last.
So thanks to Poirot who saved it being a mediocre 3 star mystery to a satisfying 4 star.
Not a must read. The book is slow paced throughout but the climax somewhat compensates it.
So try this..you may not be able to finish this in one sitting. But finish this you must.
You should wait for the last card to be turned on the table. The wait is worth it. ( )
  Shivam_Singh | Sep 5, 2015 |
A very refreshing Christie, if I may say so. And I may, since she tells you so herself in the foreword: only four suspects, all known upfront and all equally likely to have committed the investigated murder.

Needless to say, in a purely psychological investigation, Poirot is at his best. Or should I say: Christie is at her best? I loved Poirot's stubbornness and the many twists at the end of the book. Also, the (presumably) autobiographic anecdotes disguised as being Mrs Olivers ensured lovely interludes in the story. Finally, I also liked the fact that this Poirot story was not written from the first-person but from the third-person perspective. Very refreshing.

One of the best Poirot novels, if you ask me! ( )
  bbbart | May 30, 2015 |
A group of peple, all a;llegedly murdees who have escaped detecton, are invited to an uneasy dinner; another murder follows. The plot reminds me of Catr's Death in FIve Boxes. ( )
  antiquary | Oct 20, 2014 |
A nice quick read. I thought I'd figured out who did it, so it was a nice surprise at the end to find out I was wrong! ( )
  cathymoore | Sep 2, 2014 |
Rating: 4* of five

The Publisher Says: It was the match-up of the century: four sleuths--Superintendent Battle of Scotland Yard; Mrs. Ariadne Oliver, famed writer of detective stories; Col. Race of His Majesty's Secret Service; and the incomparable Hercule Poirot - invited to play bridge with four specially invited guests, each of whom had gotten away with murder! But before the first rubber was completed, the host was dead.

My Review: This review is of Christie's novel and the tenth-season film adaptation for Agatha Christie's Poirot. They earn the same rating.

One of the ways couples reinforce their pair bond is shared entertainment. My Gentleman Caller and I read a lot; I'm a big mystery fan, where he is less interested in the genre. We both enjoy mystery movies a good deal, though, and the Poirot series especially. Through the amazing and wonderful Internet, we can watch episodes together, discussing them in real time, or just canoodling in cyberspace. I think I'd go bonkers if I didn't have my fix of looking at his face this way.

So this evening we watched two of the movies. First up was this very entertaining adaptation of Christie's novel of psychology. Ariadne Oliver, an author surrogate character for Mrs. Christie herself, makes her first filmed and literary appearance here. Zoë Wanamaker is a wonderful choice to play Mrs. Oliver, being husky-voiced and of a distinctive and memorable appearance. It's one of the pleasures of the films that the actors cast in Christie's roles are uniformly excellent craftspeople, and Wanamaker is no exception.

In watching this adaptation, I felt a wee bit seasick. All the roles were there, just as in the book; but they had different names, unrecognizable motives, and switched-up personae. Colonel Race, a recurring Christie character, is called something else although it's only his name that's different. Rhoda and Anne completely switch purposes, though I have no earthly notion why. The motivation for the central murder is *completely* unrecognizable. It would, in fact, have been impossible for Christie to write it in 1935 and get the book published. The Superintendent is renamed and good gracious me how he is changed up! I mean to tell you, Ma Christie would likely be apoplectic over this particular bit of modification.

The victim, Mr. Shaitana, is portrayed by Alexander Siddig, who enacted the role of Doctor Bashir on Star Trek: Deep Space Nine about twenty years ago. I hadn't recalled that the man was so very tall and so very lean. As Shaitana, a furriner and an ethnic in racist 1930s London, he (Siddig) is perfectly chosen: He looks exotic and strange, skin of brown and eyes of green and wardrobe chosen to exaggerate the actor's dramatic silhouette. Mrs. Oliver as a stand-in for Christie herself comments on his foreignness by saying he "gives {her} the jitters." Really. Yech.

The mundane murder motive in the novel is considerably spicier in the film, and actually more fun for this modern audience of two. The book presents a more complete Christieverse experience, drawing the four sleuths and one suspect from the well she reused freely. Each decision has its advantages; on the whole, I can't say that one of the media is preferable to the other. I, and certainly my Gentleman Caller, don't subscribe to the Purity Test for films. The source material will always be altered to suit the demands of the medium. That's the way it works, and more often than not has to; not infrequently the adapted film is superior to the source material, if rabid ardent nut-level fans would simply see it. (And of course there are reverse cases by the scores, it's not a one-way street by any means.)

This film, substantially altered from an excellent novel, finds a different and equal excellence. The spirit of the story is intact, and is well served by the changes made for film. And as always, the role of Poirot is complete and entire in David Suchet's hands. And mincing feet. And waxed mustache. The story, either medium, is delicious and savory and a treat not to be denied oneself.

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License. ( )
  richardderus | Aug 31, 2014 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Agatha Christieprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Fraser, HughNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Gibbs, ChristopherCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Moffatt, JohnNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Suomalainen, AuneTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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'My dear M. Poirot!'
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Book description
De geheimzinnige mijnheer Shaitana "verzamelt" niet-ontdekte moordenaars. Een gevaarlijke hobby, die hem zijn leven kost. Poirot moet uit deze "verzameling" degene zoeken die Shaitana doodgestoken heeft. Hoewel hij uit de manier waarop de verdachten bridge spelen heel wat kan opmaken over hun karakter, blijft het een bijzonder ingewikkelde zaak.

   It was the match-up of the century: four sleuths - Superintendent Battle of Scotland Yard. Mrs Ariadne Oliver, famed writer of detective stories; Colonel Race of His Majesty's Secret Service, and the incomparable Hercule Poirot - invited to play bridge with four specially invited guests, each of whom had gotten away with murder! 
   For the host, the mysterious Mr Shaitana, it was to be a clever entertainment. But before the first rubber was completed, the host himself was dead.
   Poirot went over to the bridge table. Without touching anything he examined the scores. He shook his head once or twice.
   "The stupid little man! Oh, the stupid little man," murmured Hercule Poirot. "The dress up as the devil and try to frighten people. Quel enfantillage!"
   The door opened. the divisional surgeon came in, bag in hand; he was followed by the divisional inspector talking to Battle. A camera man came next. there was a constable in the h all.
   The routine of the detection of crime had begun ...
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0425205959, Mass Market Paperback)

Poirot is invited to a dinner party held by Mr. Shaitana, a strange old man who informs him that four of his fellow guests are murderers who have pulled off their crime without getting caught. After dinner the criminals assemble to play bridge in a separate room with their host, and Shaitana is promptly killed. It's up to Poirot to ensure that the murderer doesn't get off a second time.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:17:36 -0400)

(see all 6 descriptions)

"In the matchup of the century, four sleuths--including mystery writer Ariadne Oliver and the incomparable Hercule Poirot--have been invited to play bridge with four cunning criminals, each of whom had gotten away with murder. For the host, it is irresistible entertainment--until his own murder becomes part of the game."--back cover"… (more)

(summary from another edition)

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