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A Caribbean Mystery by Agatha Christie

A Caribbean Mystery

by Agatha Christie

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: Miss Marple (9), Miss Marple: Chronological (20)

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2,617653,550 (3.56)144
Miss Marple is on a vacation in the West Indies that is peaceful and relaxing -- until Major Palgrave turns up dead.



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» See also 144 mentions

English (56)  Danish (3)  Spanish (3)  Dutch (1)  Finnish (1)  German (1)  All languages (65)
Showing 1-5 of 56 (next | show all)
Miss Marple's nephew has kindly sent her to the Caribbean for a comfortable stay at resort. While Miss Marple isn't quite sure how she feels about the unvarying weather (how is one to start a conversation without the English weather to rely upon as a topic?), when one of the the other guests is found dead Miss Marple finds that her ability to understand personalities and motives works no matter where she is.

Regardless of where she is, spending time with Miss Marple is a reliably enjoyable experience. Even as she gets older and the definition of what's socially acceptable changes, she remains so sharp and never truly adrift. There are a couple moments of racism towards the locals, which are uncomfortable for a modern reader, but otherwise the novel holds up really well. A solid outing for the series. ( )
  MickyFine | Oct 10, 2019 |
It's a hot, sultry summer in Arizona, and we eagerly watch the skies for hints of gathering monsoon clouds. This felt like the perfect atmosphere to pick up a mystery, and on a whim, I decided to revisit one of my stand-by favorites: Agatha Christie. It's been several years since I last read a Christie mystery, but she was the first adult mystery writer that I discovered, the one that made me fall in love with the genre, and I will always have a fond, nostalgic spot in my memories for her work. Fortunately, I did not read even close to all of her books when I was younger, which means I can dive back in and read new Christie stories as the mood demands.

Did A Caribbean Mystery live up to my expectations? It did! I had a lot of fun reading this, and polished it off in a couple of days. The mystery centers around Miss Marple, one of Christie's main sleuths, an elderly lady who enjoys knitting, gossiping, and destroying evil. Miss Marple describes herself, in this novel, as being no detective or investigator, but simply a person who is able to draw parallels between the new people she meets and people from her past, and from these comparisons she can make clever conclusions about character and motive. While she may not view herself as a detective, her sleuthing skills are indisputable as she finds herself embroiled in another murder mystery, this time while she is vacationing in the West Indies.

The story opens with Miss Marple on the beach, soaking up the tropical sun and rather regretting the kindness of her nephew that resulted in her trip to the Caribbean island in the first place. Miss Marple has discovered that she much prefers the variety of English storms and inclement weather to the constant sunshine, and that she would rather be gathering the local gossip than listening to boring accounts from other tourists sharing her hotel. In fact, she is pondering these ideas as she listens to one of these dull accounts, delivered by Major Palgrave, a retired general who has a habit of droning on about his old exploits in repetitive detail. He finally piques her interest when he reveals that he has actually met a murderer. Before he can show her the picture proof of his story, they're interrupted by the return of two couples who engage the Major in a new conversation. Miss Marple puts the story off as another boastful story. Just days later, though, the Major is dead, and although it is supposedly a chronic illness that led to his death, Miss Marple has her doubts. She begins to investigate through her usual method of striking up conversations that seem like idle gossip but are really pointed little searches for clues. As she does, more bodies turn up, confirming her theory that a murderer is among them.

This is a classic Christie set-up: a closed environment, this time a hotel in the tropics, a cast of characters with plenty of secrets, blackmail, lies that must be uncovered before the real murderer is revealed, and the clever detective that everyone underestimates until she shows her hand. I haven't read many Marple mysteries, as Poirot was always my favorite, but this was a thoroughly enjoyable read. Christie is a product of older times, and some of the biases and prejudices of her class and race pop up in her stories (consider the attitude all the characters have for the native residents in this story), but her handling of clues and suspects is far from old-fashioned. Even after all these years, her mysteries remain top-class, and this is certainly a solid example of her craft. ( )
  nmhale | Jul 31, 2019 |
Quite a nice little mystery. Miss Marple takes a vacation to the West Indies courtesy of her nephew and suddenly finds herself mixed up in a bit of an intriguing situation. It takes a bit but she ferrets out the solution to the mystery in the end. ( )
  krgulick | Jun 19, 2019 |
Perhaps this wasn't the best Agatha Christie book to read first. It was slow moving and dull. The mystery centers more on gossip than anything really happening in the story. ( )
  TMullins | Jun 19, 2019 |
Another great Miss Marple! Minor pet peeve: There’s a cruise ship on the cover of this book, but none of the characters are ever on a cruise. Miss Marple flies back and forth from England.

Another problem: one character says something to the effect of, “they work like blacks.” ( )
  melissa_faith | Mar 16, 2019 |
Showing 1-5 of 56 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (18 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Christie, Agathaprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Ayres, RosalindNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Carones, MomaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Gołaczyńska, MagdalenaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Groen, L.Translatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Hickson, JoanNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Thaler, WillyTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Thommessen, GunnarTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed

Is contained in

Five Complete Miss Marple Novels: The Body in the Library, A Caribbean Mystery, The Mirror Crack'd, Nemesis, What Mrs. McGillicuddy Saw! by Agatha Christie

At Bertram's Hotel [and] A Caribbean Mystery by Agatha Christie

Neiti Marplen murhat by Agatha Christie

A Caribbean Mystery/ Evil Under the Sun / N or M? by Agatha Christie

Postmark: Murder: A Caribbean Mystery / Nemesis / Murder in Mesopotamia / Appointment With Death by Agatha Christie

Miss Marple Omnibus (Volume 2) by Agatha Christie

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To my old friend John Cruikshank Rose with happy memories of my visit to the West Indies
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"Take all this business about Kenya," said Major Palgrave.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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This is the main work for A Caribbean Mystery by Agatha Christie. It should not be combined with any adaptation, abridgement, etc.
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Average: (3.56)
1 7
1.5 3
2 22
2.5 12
3 199
3.5 63
4 158
4.5 10
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