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Postern Of Fate

I have just finished this book and I was disappointed. It couldn't live up to the plot summary of the back of the book. It mentioned murders, spies and mysterious remarks in books. Sounds exciting. But I'm fairly patient a reader, but I felt the plot was agonizingly slow. Some of the information felt repetitive in the first few chapters, but by the end of the book I was so frustrated. I won't give any spoilers at present, as there's not a spoiler tab. But I felt the end just didn't seem coherent enough to make sense. 

I wondered what other people thought of the story?

I give Agatha Christie full credit for writing a book in her 80's. I hope she got some enjoyment from writing a final Tommy and Tuppence.

"Do not allow evil into your heart. It will make a home there." Poirot -Death On The Nile


  • Tommy_A_JonesTommy_A_Jones Gloucestershire, United Kingdom ✭✭✭✭✭
    Tommy and Tuppence are looking back a lot and The book has a very weak finish but the fact that they seem to be reminiscing a lot seems apt to me, when I read it last I remember thinking it wasn't as weak as By The Pricking Of My Thumbs  I love the way Tommy anmd Tuppence come across their Investigations, they Agatha Christie was vey inventive with them
  • SeaSnapSeaSnap Cornwall, United Kingdom Investigator
    I think that there is credit due here. Tommy and Tuppence weren't her strongest detective's and she could have written a story for Poirot,  Marple or Quinn. But in her 80's she chose to write about the duo. It might not be her best, but there are writers that could NEVER write this in their 70's let alone 80's! ^:)^

    "We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit."

    Check out my Harley Quin Story here: http://community.agathachristie.com/discussion/88/the-harlequin-apartments-by-seasnap#latest

  • Poirot and Miss Marple are elderly, but oddly enough they seem to remain at the same age. There's a few brief references to Miss Marple in later books, having problems with  her joints. But her mind works as well as ever. 

    But with Tommy and Tuppence, they start off as young and then age with each book. It makes them more human. But  then again there is something quite comforting in people that don't change, so maybe that's why Poirot and Marple are more popular. Also whereas Poirot and Marple books seem timeless, the first T&T has dated. I had no idea who the detectives were who they spoofed in Partners In Crime.

    Postern Of Fate was not my least favourite AC book. That would be Passenger To Frankfurt.

    SPOILERS:   There 221 pages in my copy and I felt like only 50 of them were relevant to the plot. We first find that a secret message has been left in the book. "Mary Jordan did not die naturally  etc"I thought that was a clever idea.  We learn that the boy  who wrote it died. Then we learn that Mary Jordan was poisoned. 
    Then everything feels suspended for a long time. T&T go to people and ask the same questions, they discuss at length what they've discovered and this goes on for several chapters. The supposed action remains entirely static. Then there's some attempts on Tuppence's life, then still the story goes on even more. By then I was so eager to get to the end of the book. Then it's revealed, I felt like the murderer had just come out of nowhere. There was no clues and no real background given to background.  We learn of their supposed connection in a few sentences. There wasn't that "why didn't I spot that" moment.

    I am devoted to reading Agatha Christie, I'm very enthusiastic about her work (or I wouldn't be on this forum!)  but I can't help be aware of the shortcomings of this book.

    I've looked up other reviews and it's a mix of love it or hate it. I revisited Charles Osbornes Life and Times Of Agatha Chrisite. I had previously skipped over Postern Of Fate Until I read it. He makes notes of "amiable padding" and "meandering conversations about nothing very much at all" So I think he must have felt the same way as me.

    "Do not allow evil into your heart. It will make a home there." Poirot -Death On The Nile
  • Christopher_WrenChristopher_Wren Nordrhein-Westfalen, Germany ✭✭✭
    I think it was her worst book by far. But she was probably already pretty ill, when she wrote it. A pity, that the send-off for Tommy and Tuppence is that weak.
  • Agatha Chrisite wrote the final Miss Marple and Poirot books while she was in her prime. They were kept aside and published many years later. So I wonder why she didn't write the final Tommy and Tuppence at that point?

    "Do not allow evil into your heart. It will make a home there." Poirot -Death On The Nile
  • It kind of seems to me that Postern of Fate was a bit of an afterthought. My guess is AC realised almost too late that she wanted to write a final Tommy and Tuppence and I don't see why she shouldn't have tried, but it's a shame that it isn't a better note to send them out on.
  • MissQuinMissQuin ✭✭✭
    edited November 2013
    I agree with you Lachy. But I feel it's a shame that the book wasn't a short story. Then it would have flowed better and would have been more to the point. 

    But I do love the idea of a secret message being hidden away inside a book. You can't do that with a kindle!

    "Do not allow evil into your heart. It will make a home there." Poirot -Death On The Nile
  • youngmrquinyoungmrquin Buenos Aires, Argentina ✭✭✭
    This was the first T&T book I read and honestly I didn't like it (which is a pitty, because N or M? ranks in my top five). As some of you have stated pretty accurately, the book starts really well and then everything get stucked in time. I didn't mind them being old, due to the fact that Marple or Poirot are also old in most of the books.
    The problem here is that the story seems to be going nowhere and, as it has also been stated, it could have been told in less pages.
    Nevertheless, writing a story in your '80s is still a great achievement, that not many writers can acomplish.
  • Tommy_A_JonesTommy_A_Jones Gloucestershire, United Kingdom ✭✭✭✭✭
    That is a very fair assessment of the book youngmrquin, I love the idea of buying a box of books and in one there is something that sends you on an adventure and Caper which really is what the Beresford Books are Capers, I love the ways the Beresfords found their Cases, I think they were really Original and exciting Ideas, unfortunately for me this book didn't feliver what it looked like it did in the beginning, there were a lot of good bits but it had weak bits and ended weakly, still it is on my list to read again, maybe I will enjoy it more next time. 
  • glalonzo0408glalonzo0408 Pennsylvania, United States ✭✭✭
    What I have to say probably isn't going to be popular, but in my opinion all of the T&T books were/are horrid.  I have not been able to complete reading one to this date.....just my opinion. Don't mean to offend anyone....

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

    Agatha Christie

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