Title: The Murder at the Vicarage
Author: Agatha Christie
Series: Ms Marple #1
Murder at the Vicarage marks the debut of Agatha Christie’s unflappable and much beloved female detective, Miss Jane Marple. With her gift for sniffing out the malevolent side of human nature, Miss Marple is led on her first case to a crime scene at the local vicarage. Colonel Protheroe, the magistrate whom everyone in town hates, has been shot through the head. No one heard the shot. There are no leads. Yet, everyone surrounding the vicarage seems to have a reason to want the Colonel dead. It is a race against the clock as Miss Marple sets out on the twisted trail of the mysterious killer without so much as a bit of help from the local police
Read as part of my Agatha Christie project . You can find links to all my other Christie Reviews!
I have been in a real mood for mysteries lately and while I am waiting on those in my Hercule Poirot group to catch up I thought why not start the Ms Marple series. I have only dabbled in a couple of Marple’s over the years so I decided to go back and start at the beginning.
I truly love how much of a different style the Ms Marple books take when compared to the Poirot series. It’s surprising how little "on page" time Marple actually has. Her little observations and asides are a pleasure to read though. I love how she runs rings round all the younger policemen and even some of her colleagues too. The narration here is primarily through the Vicar who is unfortunate to find a parishioner murdered in his study at the Vicarage. With Ms Marple as the quietly observant neighbour that has just the anecdotes and comparisons through her wise years to help sus out the culprit.
This is just such a well constructed mystery with lots of red herrings, twists, turns, little side mysteries to really keep you guessing. I also found it has a number of interesting discussions and ruminations on what makes someone commit a crime. Christie clearly voices her views on corporal punishment which I notice change and progress as her writing does. Overall, all these aspects just made me want to read more and more.