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Death in the Air Hardcover – Jun 1 1987


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Hardcover, Jun 1 1987

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Product Details

  • Hardcover
  • Publisher: Dodd Mead (June 1987)
  • ISBN-10: 9997508610
  • ISBN-13: 978-9997508614
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)

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Format: Paperback
Some of Christie's novels only betray their age by a subtle reference to a bygone time, others have plots than hinge on a point that modern technology has made obsolete. In this day of cell phones, SUV, satellite TV, computer networks etc just how isolated can a house in the English countryside be? Still other stories are dated in a very charming way, and lead the reader back to a far different time. This 1935 novel takes us back to a day when air travel was very different from today. A plane of 21 passengers had 2 pilots to fly from Paris to London and 2 stewards who served five course meals.
The story opens with Poirot embarking on a flight between Paris and London. He and the other passengers settle themselves for the journey, marred only by the presence of a stowaway wasp which is quickly killed by one of the passengers. The situation changes when a steward tries to wake one of the passengers in preparation for landing. She has died during the flight.
Poirot sets out to solve the crime which appears to have been committed by using a dart tipped with snake venom shot from a blowgun. All the passengers are under suspicion and have lives that are surprising intertwined. The trail leads Poirot from London, to the English countryside and back to Paris with inquiries stretching halfway around the world. In the end Poirot is, of course, triumphant. He even manages to help true love along the way.
Even though this is very much a period piece the mystery is intriging and Christie comes through with one of her characteristic surprise twists.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 8 reviews
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
Poirot takes to flight May 3 2004
By Jeanne Tassotto - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Some of Christie's novels only betray their age by a subtle reference to a bygone time, others have plots than hinge on a point that modern technology has made obsolete. In this day of cell phones, SUV, satellite TV, computer networks etc just how isolated can a house in the English countryside be? Still other stories are dated in a very charming way, and lead the reader back to a far different time. This 1935 novel takes us back to a day when air travel was very different from today. A plane of 21 passengers had 2 pilots to fly from Paris to London and 2 stewards who served five course meals.
The story opens with Poirot embarking on a flight between Paris and London. He and the other passengers settle themselves for the journey, marred only by the presence of a stowaway wasp which is quickly killed by one of the passengers. The situation changes when a steward tries to wake one of the passengers in preparation for landing. She has died during the flight.
Poirot sets out to solve the crime which appears to have been committed by using a dart tipped with snake venom shot from a blowgun. All the passengers are under suspicion and have lives that are surprising intertwined. The trail leads Poirot from London, to the English countryside and back to Paris with inquiries stretching halfway around the world. In the end Poirot is, of course, triumphant. He even manages to help true love along the way.
Even though this is very much a period piece the mystery is intriging and Christie comes through with one of her characteristic surprise twists.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Very pleasing mystery Aug. 6 2010
By Ron - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
A typical Christie from the 1930's (ie. well plotted and thought out, clever puzzle, easy to read, not very taxing on the grey cells, and fun.) As Poirot himself comes under suspicion at the inquest into the death of a passenger on the Prometheus, he investigates the victim's business dealings and suspects more than one fellow passenger was connected to the dead woman. The copy I read contained a floor plan of the airplane, which really made no difference to the solution, but was a nice touch anyway. The solution at first seemed to stretch coincidence a bit far, but Christie manages to explain things logically after all. A good choice for mystery buffs who just want a light read.
Intriguing mystery July 4 2012
By Debbie - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
"Death in the Air"--also titled "Death in the Clouds"--is a historical mystery set in 1934 in England and France. (Of course, it was a contemporary mystery at the time it was written.)

The mystery was intriguing because it could have gone several ways as to whodunit. I guessed several elements of the "big reveal" about whodunit, and there were enough clues that you could guess whodunit (though I caught them partly because I've read so many Christie mysteries). The characters were interesting as was the unique setting for the murder, but mainly it was the puzzle of whodunit that kept me interested.

There was no sex. There were some explicit bad words and swearing. Overall, I'd recommend this intriguing mystery.
Poirot hard at work Sept. 4 2011
By Jonathan M. Lourie - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Mass Market Paperback
OK, so I have had this book hanging around for a while, and it is out of print, but having just read it and loved it, I thought I would write this review. This is classic Poirot. First the murder occurs in the first chapter, which is great, because there is no waiting around. All the suspects are clearly identified, and each has a motive. Essentially, a french women of some intrigue and power is murdered on an air ship. Her murder appears to have been caused through poisoning through a blow pipe. After that Poirot goes to work, identifies the motives and engages in a bit of trickery. Anything more would spoil the plot. Needless to say, however, an excellent little mystery.
Another Agatha Christie Masterpiece Nov. 19 2007
By C. Schaub - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
Agatha Christies "Death In The Air" is not generally regarded as one of her best detective novels. However, on re-reading it recently I think it rates among her best.

The story begins with a woman being murdered in a passenger aircraft over the English Channel. None of the other passengers (including Hercule Poirot) in the cabin witnesses the murder. In fact they swear no one came near the victim. Aha! The good old impossible crime!

The plot is excellent; the characters are satisfactory; and Miss Christie's humor is delightful. This is a "fair play" mystery -- all the clues are presented to the reader, and Poirot's hints are right on the mark. Nevertheless, very few readers will spot the murdered before the final explanation.

The story has one major gaffe that I won't mention for fear of spoiling the plot. In a later book Miss Christie, in her Ariadne Oliver persona, apologizes to her readers for her mistake.

So sit down, relax, let your mind go back 70+ years to the early days of commercial aviation, and enjoy "Death In The Air". Bonus points if you spot the gaffe.

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