5M4B disclosure After the Funeral

Growing up, I was a huge fan of Agatha Christie. I even signed up for the book club where I was sent one black hardcover book with gold lettering each month until I owned her entire collection – and I still have them. I read and reread all of them, but it’s been decades since I’d read any Agatha Christie mysteries. When After the Funeral was recently rereleased, of course I jumped on the chance to pick it up and delve into the miraculous workings of Hercule Poiroit’s brain once again.

Though After the Funeral is set in the early 20th century, it doesn’t feel so long ago. Because Agatha Christie does such a marvelous job of creating characters who are real and flawed and developing such a rich interaction amongst them, the setting around them is less important than their actions and motivations, which is the focus of her books.

Hercule Poirot was just as domineering and supercilious as I remembered him. His grey matter was as fascinatingly astute as ever, and just reading this one book has sent me back to search out more of my favorites from my collection in the basement. Agatha Christie crafts mysteries with a villain who is possible but not always the most likely or the one you anticipate it being. The twists and turns and insights into human psyche excuse the feeling that Agatha Christie is playing with you as you read the book.

Here, Hercule Poirot is called in to investigate the murder of Cora Lansquenet. At the reading of her brother’s will the day before, she uttered the shocking prhase, “He was murdered, wasn’t he?” about her brother who had ostensibly died a natural death. Though Cora was always seen as an odd bird by her family, her death the next day when an intruder broke into her house set off alarm bells with the family solicitor.

Hercule Poirot then puts himself to the test, not to prove that Cora’s brother was murdered but merely who murdered her, understanding that this would be sufficient to answer both questions. As he looks within the family to determine who could have wanted to murder Richard, let alone Cora, it’s quickly apparent that the reserved English family is nothing like what it seems. No one is truly the image they wish to present, and – as always – Hercule Poirot uncovers it all.

Although I know I’m being misdirected, I can’t help but continue reading. Agatha Christie is a master at creating a gripping tale, and I am never able to stop myself from reading “just another chapter” once I pick up one of her mysteries. After the Funeral has been released again, and whether you read it before or this is your first time delving into this book, it’s one you won’t soon put down.

Written by Michelle of Honest & Truly! who can’t believe it’s been this long since she’s read an Agatha Christie book. See what’s keeping her busy and away from Dame Agatha as she shares recipes and more on her blog Honest & Truly! and follow along with her on Twitter where she is also @HonestAndTruly.

Email Author    |    Website About Michelle M.

Michelle is a freelance writer who is happy to not have a commute but still misses her marketing and product development jobs. She keeps busy with her 7 and 9 year old children, who fortunately love to read as much as she does. When she isn't reading or cooking - or doing laundry - you can find her on her blog Honest & Truly! or on Twitter as @Honest AndTruly.

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Another Collection of Oxford Children’s Classics

As I type this, it’s late in the evening of December 14th, and my husband and I just said to each other, “We really should start Christmas shopping.” This is par for the course for us. What about you? Do you comfortably do some shopping in the week before Christmas, or do you start in July and finish by November? Regardless of when you begin shopping, books are always great gifts for the people in your life. I personally think all families should have their own copies of the classics, and most do, but often they are old tattered copies from the parents’ childhoods (true confession: our family tends to be like this). Oxford is continuing to republish children’s classics in fun, bright new editions,
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Big Little Lies, a 5-Star Read

There are a few international women’s fiction writers who have exploded as of late here in the U.S. JoJo Moyes is the prime example, Lisa Jewell is a new favorite of mine and is successfully gaining traction, and now there’s no doubt that Australian Liane Moriarty is in that club as well, perhaps the queen with all the attention this book has gotten this year. Earlier this year, I listened to the newly-published-on-audio Three Wishes. I liked it, and could see that she had that ability to balance plot, told with humor and suspense, with that “something more” bit of social commentary designed to make you think about the issues of our day while also grappling with the idea of right and wrong. Big Little
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The Wild Truth by Carine McCandless

I remember reading the original story about Chris McCandless in the 90s and being haunted by it, by this young man who had gone into the wild and never returned. I knew young men like that, who loved spending time in the wilderness of Alaska and the Pacific NW, intense people who rejected materialism and stayed up late to discuss ideas and literature and how following your dreams was the only way to be true to yourself. Later I read Into the Wild and even watched the movie. Naturally, I was fascinated when Chris’ younger sister, Carine, published a memoir. I wasn’t the only one fascinated by Chris’ story. It got a lot of publicity, and many weighed in with their own opinions. While some
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All the Bright Places

I didn’t really want to read this book, but I was curious. Two teens meet on the ledge of a bell tower and change each other’s lives. It’s being compared to The Fault in Our Stars (as is any emotionally resonant new YA fiction these days), which has been criticized for romanticizing cancer. I don’t agree with that assessment of that title, but I did worry that this novel would somehow romanticize suicidal feelings. But I decided to give it a go, and I’m glad I did. If I didn’t want to read All the Bright Places, I definitely didn’t want to be enchanted by the sad story, but I was. Violet is a girl dealing with the tragedy of losing her sister in a
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Men, Women & Children {Books on Screen}

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Dogs Rule, Nonchalantly

Do you have any dog lovers in your family? Maybe art lovers? I was interested in checking out this book, because we are all dog lovers in our family and because my teen daughter is an art enthusiast, I knew that we’d enjoy Dogs Rule Nonchalantly. The tone of the book is definitely one that those who think of dogs more as friends or family members than messy fur balls (okay, I feel that way about mine sometimes, while still seeing her as the above). One of the lines described a former dog of mine pretty well “of course they need lots of exercise, and some can use a little therapy too.” And this line reminded me of my current dog: We also learned that
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David Baldacci on his switch from adult legal thrillers to fantasy for kids #ReadBaldacci

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For Goodness Sex: Changing the Way We Talk to Teens About Sexuality, Values, and Health

You know that image of the blundering, uncomfortable parent trying to have “the talk” with his or her teenager? There are countless reinforcements of that stereotype in our society, especially in pop culture, but I’ve always believed it didn’t have to be that way. From a young age, I opted to use correct terminology when talking with my kids about their body parts. I would joke that we don’t tell our babies that they smell with their “sniffers,” but instead call it a nose, so why would I feel the need to come up with a cutesy name for my son’s penis or my daughter’s vulva? I’ve tried to retain that openness and candor with my kids as they’ve grown, and with my oldest now
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Prayer: Experiencing Awe and Intimacy with God by Tim Keller

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Encouraging Reading with Magazine Baskets {On Reading}

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