Book Review: The Monogram Murders by Sophie Hannah (The New Hercule Poirot Mystery, 1)

The Monogram Murders is a 2014 detective novel by British author Sophie Hannah, featuring the iconic detective character of Agatha Christie, Hercule Poirot. The book is set in the 1920s and follows Poirot as he investigates a series of murders at the luxurious Bloxham Hotel in London.

The story begins when Poirot is approached by a panicked woman named Jennie, who confesses to having committed a murder. However, before Poirot can learn more, Jennie disappears, and he becomes involved in a complex and twisted web of clues and suspects. The murder victims are all connected to the Bloxham Hotel, which leads Poirot to check in as a guest in order to solve the mystery.

The book is written in a similar style to Agatha Christie’s original novels, and Sophie Hannah does an excellent job of capturing the tone and atmosphere of Christie’s work. Poirot is portrayed with all his eccentricities and quirks, and the other characters are also well-developed and interesting.

The plot of The Monogram Murders is complex, with numerous twists and turns that keep the reader guessing until the end. The book is also well-paced, with the tension building steadily throughout, and the reveal of the murderer is satisfying and surprising.

One of the strengths of the book is the way it revisits and updates many of the classic elements of Christie’s work. The setting of the Bloxham Hotel is reminiscent of the opulent hotels of Christie’s time, and the various characters who inhabit it are similarly evocative of the kinds of people who would frequent such places. Hannah also introduces a number of new characters and ideas, while still staying true to the classic formula of the murder mystery.

The Monogram Murders is an excellent addition to the Hercule Poirot canon, and a worthy tribute to Agatha Christie’s work. The book is well-written, with a complex and engaging plot, and a satisfying conclusion. It is a must-read for fans of classic murder mysteries, as well as for those who are curious to see what Poirot would be like in a modern context. You can pick up a copy from Amazon here.


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