Cards on the Table   (Hercule Poirot novel) . Agatha Christie . UB5067


Cards on the Table  (Hercule Poirot novel)

 Agatha Christie

First published : 1936


Used book , but looks almost new , no damage.

Pages: 286

Paper back edition

Delivery : 7 to 14 working days (Delivery inside India only)


Hercule Poirot is a fictional Belgian detective created by Agatha Christie. Poirot is one of Christie’s most famous and long-running characters, appearing in 33 novels, and more than 50 short stories published between 1920 and 1975.


Cards on the Table

Meeting by chance at an art exhibition, the flamboyant collector Mr Shaitana tells Hercule Poirot of his personal crime-related collection and invites him to a dinner party to see it. Scoffing at the idea of collecting mere artefacts, Shaitana explains that he collects only the best exhibits: criminals who have evaded justice.


Poirot’s fellow guests include three other crime professionals: secret serviceman Colonel Race, mystery writer Mrs Ariadne Oliver, and Superintendent Battle of Scotland Yard; along with four people Shaitana believes to be murderers: Dr Roberts, Mrs Lorrimer, Anne Meredith, and Major Despard. Shaitana taunts his suspects with comments that each understands as applying only to them.


The guests retire to play bridge, the crime professionals playing in one room while the others play in a second room where Shaitana relaxes by the fire. As the party breaks up, Shaitana is found to be dead – stabbed in the chest with a stiletto from his own collection. None of the suspects can be ruled out, as all had left their places at the table during the evening. Leading the police investigation, Superintendent Battle agrees to put his “cards on the table” and to allow the other professionals to make their own enquiries. Poirot concentrates on the psychology of the murderer.


The investigators look into the suspects’ histories: the husband of one of Dr Roberts’ patients died of anthrax shortly after accusing the doctor of improper conduct; a botanist that Despard had been guiding through the Amazon was rumoured to have been shot. Anne’s housemate Rhoda Dawes tells Mrs Oliver in confidence about an incident that Anne has been concealing, when an elderly woman for whom Anne was acting as companion died after mistaking poison for syrup of figs. Mrs Lorrimer’s husband had died twenty years earlier, though little is known about that.


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