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Cards On The Table [Mass Market Paperback]

Agatha Christie
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (22 customer reviews)

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Book Description

July 5 2005 Hercule Poirot Mysteries (Book 14)
Poirot is invited to a dinner party held by Mr. Shaitana, a strange old man who informs him that four of his fellow guests are murderers who have pulled off their crime without getting caught. After dinner the criminals assemble to play bridge in a separate room with their host, and Shaitana is promptly killed. It's up to Poirot to ensure that the murderer doesn't get off a second time.
--This text refers to the Audio CD edition.

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Review

“When you think it’s Colonel Mustard in the basement with the crescent wrench, you owe the fun to Dame Christie.” (William Dietrich, New York Times bestselling author of the Ethan Gage Adventures)

“The finest murder story of her career….Mrs. Christie has never been more ingenious.” (Daily Mail (London)) --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

From the Back Cover

Mr. Shaitana is famous as a flamboyant party host. Nevertheless, he is a man of whom everybody is a little afraid. So when he boasts to Hercule Poirot that he considers murder an art form, the detective has some reservations about accepting a party invitation to view Shaitana’s “private collection.”

Indeed, what begins as an absorbing evening of bridge is to turn into a more dangerous game altogether.…

--This text refers to the Paperback edition.

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"MY dear Monsieur Poirot!" It was a soft purring voice used deliberately as an instrument-nothing impulsive or unpremeditated about it. Read the first page
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Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
4.6 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Agatha Christie creates a delightful set-up for mystery fans. It is a dinner party with eight guests and a host. Four people who may have gotten away with murder in one room playing bridge and four detectives playing bridge in the another room, including the always clever Hercule Poirot and the wacky mystery writer Mrs. Ariadne Oliver. By evening's end the host and organizer of this odd dinner party is dead and only one of the four possible murderers could have done it. The author and the four detectives, and thus the reader, have a lot of fun with this conceit. The book spills its tale quickly and makes for a rapid, wonderful read, even if the denoument becomes a little tangled and far-fetched. It is a crazy ride worth taking for a few hours.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Murder during Bridge Feb. 10 2003
By A Customer
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Mr. Shaitana, an acquaintance of Poirot's, invited him to a party to meet four people who he though got away with murder. An Inspector from the Scotland Yard, a British Secret Service and a murder fiction writer were also invited to the party. Mr. Shaitana challenged the investigators to figure out what murders the suspects had committed. The suspects, Dr. Roberts, Major Despard, Mrs. Lorrimer, and Miss Meredith, all were in the room playing bridge when Mr. Shaitana was murdered. The four investigators began working on clues using their own techniques to solve the crime. Which one of the suspects murdered Mr. Shaitana in fear of Mr. Shaitana telling the police about their crime and were they all crime that Mr. Shaitana thought? I would rate this book a 5 out of 5. All four suspects seem to be guilty and them seemed to be innocent. You don't know who did it until the end. I've always like Agatha Christie books since I saw the remake of Murder on the Orient Express on TV. Since then I've read about 13 Agatha Christie books.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Its Agatha Christie April 10 2014
By Bootsy Bass TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Its quaint, and of its time, and its Hercule Poirot. You get the quality story and writing you expect from Agatha Christie. He is quite the detective, and Agatha Christie knew how to spin a mystery.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Great plot, great Characters, great humour Oct. 4 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
One of my favorite Christies of all time. Even if you have seen the made for tv version. Ariadne Oliver appears in this novel. This is a closed room whodunit which allows Mrs Christie to really investigate all the characters in depth and Poirot can really sink his teeth in his beloved psychology. All the aspects of a mystery novel are intensified by the challenge of a closed room. The alibi's are brilliantly developed by Poirot. Definitely one to read over and over again.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Very Masterfully Done! July 20 2004
Format:Mass Market Paperback
We already know that Agatha Christie is the queen of the Crime story. Her books are timeless, and are as enjoyable now as when they were written in the 30's and 40's. Not many authors have her longevity, and very few in the mystery genre. This stoy at first appears simplistic, because there are only four suspects, and each of them very credibly could have been the murderer. But the story is much more complex than it first appears. The four potential murderers have apparently all get some sort of murder in their histories, so each one of them could have killed Shaitana. Not only that. the murder was committed when none other than Hercule Poirot and Chief Inspector Battle are both on the premises. This is a very cool killer indeed, and Battle and Poirot set out to unmask the killer. I don't know why I had not read this Agatha Christie story before, but I certainly missed the boat. It's as I said deceptively simple, but highly entertaining.
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5.0 out of 5 stars again,and again a good book... May 2 2004
By ainil
Format:Mass Market Paperback
the mystery book that has an established 'brand' name of agatha christie is rare to dissapoint you as the possibility of good mystery book written by her is high...so whenever you want a nice and cosy mystery,you can rely on her book(but not all)...this particular book is one of the most ingenious set up that you could wish of...the plot is mainly around the murder during the bridge game,now that agatha was well known for her wide knowledge of bridge..so she used her talent in this book...this book is a must for all mystery lover
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4.0 out of 5 stars Introducing Ariadne Oliver May 2 2004
Format:Mass Market Paperback
While at an art gallery opening Hercule Poirot makes the aquaintance of Mr. Shaitana, an eccentric collector of art and curiosities. Among his curiosities Mr. Shaitana includes a few murderers who have managed not to be caught, or even be seriously under suspicion. Shaitana decides that he would like to have a dinner party to show off his collection and to that end, he invites four murderers and four detectives. During the dinner he drops a few not so subtle hints about what he knows and sits back to watch the 'fun'. The fun takes an unexpected turn during the after dinner bridge games, the host is murdered.
The detectives on the case are Poirot, Col. Race from the Foreign Office, Sgt. Battle (THE SECRET OF CHIMNEYS and THE SEVEN DIALS MYSTERY) and Ariadne Oliver, mystery writer (DEAD MAN'S FOLLY and THE PALE HORSE). The murderers include Dr. Roberts, who may have killed a patient; Col. Despard, who may have killed the husband of the woman he loved; Mrs. Lorrimar, whose husband died under 'usual circumstances' and Miss Meredith whose former employer died of an accidental poisoning.
The detectives decide to try to uncover the murderer themselves, each has their own ideas about who did it and why and each goes about the investigation in their own way. The plot takes many interesting twists and turns. Just when it appears that all has been revealed Christie gives one of her characteristic twists .
The main reason that I feel that this is a four, not a five star novel is the emphasis placed on the bridge game. As a non-bridge player I felt that there was a vital clue that I was missing even though it was right there in front of me. In fairness it is possible to solve the crime without the bridge game clues but it was still frustrating while reading the story.
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