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June's Book of the Month: A Murder is Announced

adminadmin Cuanza Norte, Angola admin
June's Book of the Month is A Murder is Announced, promoted as Agatha Christie's 50th book and celebrated this year in its 65th anniversary.

Leave your thoughts, theories, questions and queries below.



  • Tommy_A_JonesTommy_A_Jones Gloucestershire, United Kingdom ✭✭✭✭✭
    I love this book, I love the Plot, The Characters It is perfect, I haven't got a bad word to say about it.
  • tudestudes Rio de Janeiro, Brazil ✭✭✭✭
    I will re-read this marvelous book! It's one of the best! Not only Miss Marple's best, but A.C!
    And the ending is incredible! It's a masterpiece!
  • shanashana Paramaribo, Suriname ✭✭✭
    Admin, I was wondering how it"s decided which title becomes the book of the month? 
  • maryamalbulushimaryamalbulushi Oman ✭✭✭
    The book very good I liked it only the thing is you can guess the murderer but not the story behind him/her of course ... One thing I personally did not like was that there was two woman who were a couple,like seriously!! That kind of ruined the book for me as there was no need for such a thing IMHO
    We shall not hunt together again, my friend. Our first hunt was here — and our last ... They were good days. Yes, they have been good days...
  • maryamalbulushimaryamalbulushi Oman ✭✭✭
    Oh actually I forgot to mention that I finished the book without knowing that fact and I liked it alot ,then I read on Wikipedia that they were couple and so on ,but I don't know if it's true or no..
    We shall not hunt together again, my friend. Our first hunt was here — and our last ... They were good days. Yes, they have been good days...
  • ChristieFanForLife ChristieFanForLife ✭✭✭✭
    edited June 2015


    In A Murder Is Announced, the Geraldine McEwan TV adaption), the producers had Murgatrod and Hinch kiss and hold hands whereas in the book and the Joan Hickson adaptation none of this is even in there. Now critics have said that they are both lesbians and they said that it's hinted in the book that they are but how so?-- because Hinch has cropped hair like a man (as it is described in the book) and because you find the two living together? It is very possible that they are both lesbians, but if someone says that they are because they live together you have to look at the times, the era, and what occurred. Was it really that ODD to find two women living together during that time in post-war England where the country is dealing with rations and times are kind of rough? Just because two women are living together doesn't mean they are a couple, just as today when you see two women living together . . . . and you certainly can't jump to the conclusion that they are a couple. The only conclusion I can come up with as to why critics question Murgatrod and Hinch's sexuality is because Hinch looks and acts masculine and Murgatrod doesn't and they just so HAPPEN to live together.

    But it is very possible, as I said earlier, that Hinch and Murgatroyd are lesbians in the book and that Agatha Christie was trying to say it without ACTUALLY saying it. You got to remember, back then, this matter was taboo whereas today it is not and it's more open and talked about so for Christie to blatantly say that both women were would not have been appropriate at that time, whereas in the Poirot book The Halloween Party the word "lesbian" is used and is the only Christie book to have that word, and you have to remember that the book was published in the 60's and times were changing and certain things were becoming more permissible and talked about in the open.

    This is very interesting to discuss and I'm just laying out some points for discussion, bringing out views on both sides of the fence. I think at the end of this discussion I'll bring my opinion out in the open.

    “People in the dark are quite different, aren’t they?”  ― A Murder Is Announced 
  • Tommy_A_JonesTommy_A_Jones Gloucestershire, United Kingdom ✭✭✭✭✭
    iThe wonderful thing about the Book and BBC version is that the situation is not spelt out so people who woulf rather not thing=k of them as lovers can do so and people who want to take the opposite view can do so, but just because they hold hands in the ITV version doesn't mean that they are necessarily portraying them as lovers as the stange thing about the difference of |Men and women is that women have always been able to hold hands without people wanting to label them Lesbiens, I reember watching the news a while ago and saw children in rows of 2 walking into assembly boy holding boy's hands girls holding girls hands, It is so sad life will soon teach these children this is frowned on.
  • youngmrquinyoungmrquin Buenos Aires, Argentina ✭✭✭
    As everyone has stated before, this book is a masterpiece. Indeed, not only is Miss Marple's best, but also I find it to be one of the best Christie's ever. It's certainly in the first place of my AC ranking.
    From the invitation to the event from the multiple scenes with all the characters, to the investigation of the police and the second murder and all the possibilities discussed of whom might be the villain in all this, this is classic Christie fun. 
    Miss Marple is also excellent in her research, talking those involved and then "discovering" what really happened by an irrelevant domestic event.
    About the debate about if they were or were not a couple, I have nothing to add, just to say that effectively, this is not something explicit in the book and it's left to the imagination of the reader.
  • GriseldaGriselda ✭✭✭✭
    Yes, I agree with the consensus that this is a masterpiece and perfectly paced in terms of what information we are allowed to know. Miss Marple's engagement with the characters is so well drawn because she really understands that type and how they could think as they do. SPOILER ALERT On one level the crime is so everyday, and true to life. There is one premise I really, really like, SPOILER ALERT!!!!  when Miss Marple says SPOILER ALERT!! that it would be so much easier for the person who owned the house to have arranged for the murder to take place. So true, but you don't see it. The romance bit is great too.

    Interesting though, I saw a factual error which is something which I have not spotted in any other AC book. Julia's eyes change colour when described in two different chapters. 

  • I found the first murder to be very complex, and felt there were too many chances for it failing - either not killing or being caught. Other than that I really liked the book and agree with most of the things said here. As to Hinchcliff and Murgatroid - I think at the time, two women living together was more common than now, for several reasons: because of the two World Wars there was a shortage of men, in England and in all Europe. That meant both a personal loss (women who couldn't have male partners) and financial hardship for women, who even if they had an income or job, were typically less well off and secure than men. I think probably in most cases it was just a matter of companionship and economic necessity, and also that when there was a lesbian relationship it was probably discreet on the part of the couple, and ignored by society, or rather treated as just housemates, so that they could be accepted by (conservative) others. Interesting that in Cards on the Table no one suspects the two girls living together are lesbians - they are obviously attracted to men, but still live together for companionship and sharing expenses.
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