If you’re new to the site and would like to get involved please click on one of the buttons in the box below.

November 2013 Book of the Month: Endless Night

TuppenceTuppence City of London, United Kingdom admin
This month we're reading Endless Night - a chilling romance, in which a gypsy curse threatens a young couple when they build their home on cursed land.

Post your discussion questions here.
Any questions? Please email [email protected]


  • Tommy_A_JonesTommy_A_Jones Gloucestershire, United Kingdom ✭✭✭✭✭

    The Only thing in this books favour is that it isn't Passenger To Frankfurt Characters dull and the Plot uninteresting, I am glad ITV are putting Miss Marple in this one, It can only improve it like Hastings being in the Adaptation of  Murder In Mesopotamia improved that.

  • glalonzo0408glalonzo0408 Pennsylvania, United States ✭✭✭
    While I don't find it as captivating as say Murder on the Orient Express, I don't find it dull and uninteresting.  I must agree it is not AC worthy but IMHO if you forget who wrote it, it isn't so bad.

    The best time to plan a book is while you're doing the dishes.

    Agatha Christie

  • MissQuinMissQuin ✭✭✭
    edited November 2013
    I think that it's an under-rated book. The first time I read it, I did find it hard to get into. I'd only just started reading Christie, so I was hoping for something more like a murder mystery in a country house. I did give up reading it. I did have suspicion about the killer very early on in the book, despite the red herrings. I revisited the book later on and I could see there were parts that were brilliant and that I'd overlooked. 

    I absolutely love the title from William Blake. The book is astonishing in the fact it was written from the view point of a worldly young man. Yet it  was written by an elderly woman who had her own sense of justice, fairness and morality, which the main character doesn't possess. I give her full credit for this.

    I have wondered how Endless Night is so unlike her other books?  The tone is much more sensual but with disturbed thoughts of murder mixed in. Also in her later works, the plot does tend to go off and wander. Take Postern Of Fate, Passenger To Frankfurt and Elephants Can Remember. There are many long monologues in them, written about the past. Yet Endless Night is curiously modern and not meandering. The plot is fast paced in realtion to most of her other books. 

    It does make me wonder if Agatha Christie had someone who advised her on the book? Yet the murder confession feels very much like her work. She pulled it off in Then There Were None, Ackroyd and Edgware.  It's a disturbing end but in a good way.

    Although there is a Miss Marple story that is the same plot as Endless night, it isn't actually the same in style. 

    I do know people on the old forum did enjoy this book so I'm hoping for some positive comments.  I think that for people who like Then There Were none, this is a good and chilling book. The part where he thinks he's seen Ellie's ghost was so intense.

    "Do not allow evil into your heart. It will make a home there." Poirot -Death On The Nile
  • Any time an artist tries something new, it is valuable.  Endless Night does not follow the typical Christie plot (set-up, murder, investigation, solution) or the typical pacing.  It's not really a detective story.  There aren't really clues, more like a late reveal of what certain events really meant, so it's not set up for a reader to solve the way her classic whodunits are with clues that add up to a solution.  The ending is a surprise, well handled by Christie who at that point was quite old yet writing convincingly from the point-of-view of a young man.  I would have preferred if Christie clued it better, the way in And Then There Were None it turns out there were clues that could have been detected and unravelled to lead to a solution, but it's an unusual and effective novel.
  • Endless Night reminds me of the 1960s movie 'Alfie', with the anti-hero who thinks he is invincible, but is actually pathetic and out of synch with society in general. I enjoy re-reading it every few years and I think that it's a pretty good straightforward thriller (not Agatha's forte in general, in my opinion).
  • LucilleLucille Ontario, Canada Investigator
    I have not yet read the book as I am still waiting for it.  I can't wait to get into it! I have heard that it's different from what Agatha Christie usually does. I am very curious to see for myself!
  • glalonzo0408glalonzo0408 Pennsylvania, United States ✭✭✭
    I am half way thru the book and have to say I am enjoying it....many people on this site do not like this book...i find it different but enjoyable.

    The best time to plan a book is while you're doing the dishes.

    Agatha Christie

  • The adaptation is being shown here in Uk over Christmas. I will put off watching til much later as it's rather low on festive spirit. I really didn't want it to be filmed as a Miss Marple story. I know it's similar to The Case Of The Caretaker. But the Miss Marple version is only short and is nowhere near as intense.

    "Do not allow evil into your heart. It will make a home there." Poirot -Death On The Nile
  • youngmrquinyoungmrquin Buenos Aires, Argentina ✭✭✭
    edited February 2014
    This was the very first book by AC I read in English.
    This is one of her books that has to offer much more in terms of style, writing and atmosphere than the plot itself.
    It's really eerie and gothic, and the fact that we see the world trough the eyes of the main character helps to shape the setting. 


    My biggest problem with it is that nothing happens until the very end when, sadly, the book almost finishes. The vast majority of the narrative is the description of Mike and his relationship with Ellie, how they met and the social differences that difficult their process. There is and eerie feeling that something is going to happen at any minute, but this minute takes forever to happen. It could have been a much better story if the whole threat of the gipsy have been fleshed out more, playing with the supernatural like in Pale Horse or Mr. Quin stories.
Sign In or Register to comment.