Taken at the Flood: A Hercule Poirot Mystery Paperback – Aug 30 2011
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From Publishers Weekly
Hercule Poirot fans will be pleased to hear Hugh Fraser, who plays Captain Hastings on PBS's Mystery! and A&E's Poirot, recount Christie's intriguing 1948 novel (published in the U.S. as There Is a Tide). The celebrated Belgian sleuth visits the sleepy English village of Warmsley Vale to check into the background of Gordon Cloade, supposedly a victim of the London Blitz. He had wed an attractive young widow, the former Mrs. Underhay, now the sole possessor of the Cloade family fortune. The deceased's sister-in-law told Poirot that "spirits" informed her that the widow's first husband is still among the living, raising suspicions about Cloade's demise. Fraser's tone at once reassures listeners that, just as on television, they are in capable hands. He does a fine job creating a variety of character voices, distinguishing one from another with clarity but without excessive flamboyance. The release of any Christie is an event, and it does not taken an abundance of "little gray cells" to deduce that this audio will be well-received. (June)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Audio CD edition.
“[I’m] fascinated by Poirot’s ‘little grey cells.’” (John Mortimer, author of Rumpole of the Bailey)
“One of the better Christies… Don’t miss.” (New York Herald Tribune)
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Top Customer Reviews
The Cloade family had always relied on Uncle Gordon and his money to make their lives more comfortable. In post war England life was no longer comfortable and they needed Uncle Gordon more than ever. Unfortunately for them Uncle has married a much younger woman, then died in an air raid without making provisions for them. Now they needed to ask his young wife and her brother (or is he her brother?) for help...or did they?
Surprise twists happen every few pages making what is seemed certain suddenly uncertain - rather like the post war turmoil many of the characters were experiencing. In typical Christie fashion though, all the clues are there for the reader to ferret out before Poirot reveals all.
During an air raid in London, World War 2, Poirot happened to overhear a Major Porter musing over a news report he just read. Mr Gordon Cloade, rich old man and once thought to be a confirmed bachelor, had married a young girl Rosaleen shortly before being hit by enemy bombing of London. The widow and her brother were the only people succesfully rescued, the rest of the household staff perished and Gordon Cloade did not awaken though the rescuers dug him out too.
Major Porter mused that he had known the first husband of Rosaleen in Africa, a colonial by the name of Robert Underhay. The couple realised that the marriage was a mistake. Pious Roman Catholic Underhay confided in Porter that he might do an "Enoch Arden" (in reference to Alfred Tennyson's poem of the same name), letting the world think he was dead and enabling Rosaleen to move on with her life. Whatever the case, word came to the colonial office that Underhay died in the outbacks and later, Rosaleen had a lightning marriage with rich Gordon Cloade, only to be widowed again shortly.
The story moved on to a year after the end of the war and life in Britain was difficult for most people, not the least to other members of the Cloade family. Gordon Cloade was the financial protector who had actively encouraged the other Cloades to venture out on their own, tacitly promising financial backings to pick them up if they fall or to take care of them.Read more ›
'Taken at the Flood' was not one of Christie's best although it is enjoyable enough for a quick afternoon read. Red herrings are piled right and left to confuse the reader as per usual. And if you can spot the major clue which Christie practically signposted on page.....well, all I'm saying is that if you can spot it then you'll probably have a good hunch who did the dirty deed.
Or would you?
For the case IS puzzling as more bodies begin to pile up (three people die in the book). Poirot himself is confused and asks, "If A has a motive to kill C and B has a motive to kill D, would it make sense if A killed D and B killed C?"
Perfect book for that 2-3 hour plane, train or car ride.
Most recent customer reviews
This Agatha Christie novel has a deliciously complex plot with the usual twists and turns which are uncovered by the inimitable Hercule Poirot. Read morePublished on May 10 2004 by Karen Potts
You might be able to think you know who done it here but once again, Christie makes the obvious deliberately hard to decipher. Read morePublished on June 15 2002 by JR