Tag: Murdered

Agatha Christie – The Secret of Chimneys | Review

Title: The Secret of Chimneys

Author: Agatha Christie

Type: Fiction

Page Count: 310

Rating: 3/5

This one’s a bit of a strange one because there aren’t any of Christie’s iconic characters for us to enjoy and it’s arguably more of an espionage thriller than a classic cosy mystery. That doesn’t mean that there’s nothing here to like, but it does mean that if you’re expecting some classic cosy crime then you’re probably going to be disappointed.

I think my favourite thing about this book was probably the old lady who’d lived a blameless life and who ended up being blackmailed by someone. She realised that the blackmailer had got the wrong person, but she decided to play along anyway, even giving him some money, which she would otherwise have spent on a dress. She just wanted a little bit of excitement in her life, and fair play to her.

From there, someone gets murdered, and then we kind of slowly move on from there. The pacing is pretty good and the overall plot itself works out, it’s just that it’s nowhere near as gripping as some of Christie’s other work and so it feels relatively disappointing as a consequence. It’s definitely something that you’re only going to want to read if you’re a completionist like I am, or if you’re lucky enough to get a copy of the facsimile edition without paying, like I did.

That’s pretty much all I’ve got for you here. I guess the only other thing that I’d mention is that one of the characters speaks like Poirot does, using English but sprinkling in random bits of French here and there. I feel as though Christie was just keeping herself in practice there and it didn’t really work so well. You see, not everything she touched turned to gold.

Learn more about The Secret of Chimneys.

 


Bret Easton Ellis – American Psycho | Review

Title: American Psycho

Author: Bret Easton Ellis

Type: Fiction

Page Count/Review Word Count: 390

Rating: 3.5/5

 

Bret Easton Ellis - American Psycho

Bret Easton Ellis – American Psycho

 

It’s pretty difficult for me to review this one because while I did actually enjoy reading it, I don’t necessarily think it was an objectively good book. A lot of the ideas and the imagery in it were so clunky that it was like being beat over the head with them, and while I’ve previously said to a YouTube friend that I like it when the author makes it easy for me to grasp the imagery, this book just took the piss a bit. After the third or the fourth long extract where Bateman is dissecting popular music to contrast it with his random outbursts of violence, I was just so done with it. The same is true with the constant references to Donald Trump and the way that Bateman and his cronies worship money as their own private religion. It could have been a powerful message, but by the end of the book I was just like, “I GET THE POINT.”

But like I said, I still enjoyed reading the book, and I even thought that the “erotic” scenes were written tastefully without resorting to using weird phrases like “he entered her glistening sex with his rigid tip”, which is all too common when people write sex scenes. Sure, the sex scenes in question basically involve people being raped and then brutally murdered and so it’s not exactly easy reading, but at least the writing itself didn’t make me cringe. To be honest, I was mostly numb to it all and it quite often felt as though stuff had just been thrown into the mix to shock and offend people.

All in all, I find it hard to judge this one. It was simultaneously dated and more relevant than ever, but the actual central plot was just so-so. Perhaps it was more impactful back in 1991 and I suspect I would have enjoyed it more if I’d never read Irvine Welsh, because this reads like an American version of Irvine Welsh except following rich people instead of poor people. They weren’t compelling characters to read about and no amount of gore porn could help it to recover. It was like a horror film that’s only scary because of jump scares.

 

Bret Easton Ellis

Bret Easton Ellis

 

Click here to buy American Psycho.

 


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