Tag: Unpleasant

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.

 


Charles Bukowski – War All the Time | Review

Title: War All the Time

Author: Charles Bukowski

Type: Poetry

Page Count/Review Word Count: 288

Rating: 4*/5

 

Charles Bukowski - War All the Time

Charles Bukowski – War All the Time

 

War All the Time is one of Bukowski’s later collections, bringing together poems from 19811984 in a fascinating collection that actually breaks some of the trends that Bukowski had set during his earlier work. He’s mellower, but he’s also more preoccupied with death, and while he still races the horses, he’s slightly less of a womaniser.

If you’ve ever read Bukowski before then you know roughly what to expect here, although it’s worth noting that a few of the poems also play with prose and one of them is a long piece with multiple different sections. Some of them are the other way round, super short and to the point, but they’re delivered in Bukowski’s typical simplistic but effective style. It’s really remarkable how much of a punch he was able to pack, and Bukowski got better and better at that towards the end of his life.

Still, this isn’t my favourite Bukowski collection, but it’s still a pretty good book regardless. It’s particularly interesting to see him reflect upon the writers that have lived and died in his lifetime, as well as on lost loves and the various unpleasant things that happened to him. There are also some poems about cats, but they’re not particularly cheerful. Still, I could relate to them a lot because I have a cat too.

All in all, this is a pretty typical Bukowski collection and it was exactly what I was hoping for when I picked it up. I recommend reading some of his work if you get a chance, and this is a decent place to start. Enjoy.

 

Charles Bukowski

Charles Bukowski

 

Click here to buy War All the Time.