Tag: Redeeming

Dashiell Hammett – The Dain Curse | Review

Title: The Dain Curse
Author: Dashiel Hammett

Type: Fiction

Page Count/Review Word Count: 192

Rating: 1.5/5



I was looking forward to picking this book up because I’ve read and enjoyed Hammett before and because the title of this one basically has my name in it. Unfortunately, it wasn’t as good as the other Hammett that I’ve read and my overarching feeling while reading this was just boredom. I didn’t care for the characters or the case.

There were a few redeeming moments here and there when it came to the writing, and I also liked the fact that opium was mentioned, which seems to happen a lot in old school murder mysteries. But while this one did have elements of the private eye style that Hammett is known for, it also had a lot of superstition and mystery thrown in which I didn’t really care for.

All in all, this was a struggle for me to complete, and I ended up tackling it as a bedtime book by reading 25 pages at a time. Even then it was a struggle, so I can’t recommend it.


Stephen King

Stephen King


Click here to buy The Dain Curse.

Agatha Christie – Appointment with Death | Review

Title: Appointment with Death

Author: Agatha Christie

Type: Fiction

Page Count/Review Word Count: 266

Rating: 3/5



This one was a little bit of a disappointment, and it’s the first Agatha Christie novel that I’ve read for a while that I haven’t particularly enjoyed. I think part of the reason for that is the pacing. The first half of the book was dedicated to the setup, despite the fact that it’s pretty clear who’s going to die.

It’s also hard to care too much about the murder victim because she’s deliberately written as an unpleasant old hag. In fact, the ending of the book is a cliché too – once the murderer has been revealed, they commit suicide, and then a newspaper report is printed saying that it was an accidental death because the gun went off by accident while they were cleaning it. It feels like that happens surprisingly often, and I get kind of annoyed when Poirot et. al just allow the truth of the case to be swept under the carpet.

Still, there are also some redeeming features, and even a less enjoyable Agatha Christie novel is better than most other books. I just don’t think this is one that I’d come back to and re-read in a hurry when there are so many other great Agatha Christie books on the market. If you’re looking for somewhere to start, I’d suggest And Then There Were None or Death on the Nile. Although I did at least like the archaeological elements of this story, It just didn’t grip me.


British writer of crime and detective fiction, Dame Agatha Christie (1891 – 1976). (Photo by Walter Bird/Getty Images)


Click here to buy Appointment with Death.