British, crime fiction, mystery

A Murder is Announced

May 29, 2019

The first Miss Marple mystery I’ve ever read and I liked it a lot. I just finished writing a book review of Andrew Hobbs’ A Fleet Street in Every Town: The Provincial Press in England, 1855-1900, so the opening chapter of Christie’s novel was especially exciting to me because it lists the various newspapers that all the villagers take, emphasizing that nearly every inhabitant takes the local paper, North Benham News and Chipping Cleghorn Gazette (the paper is burdened with a realistically long and ridiculous name). I also love the villagers’ investment in reading the Personal Column and advertisements. But geeking out over journalism history aside, the plotting and writing are wonderful. I still need to figure out why there’s such explicit prejudice voiced by the villagers against the (Jewish) (Eastern) European refugee characters–this shows my own lack of depth to any historical knowledge about WWII, I’m sure. I hope this teaches well, since I’m probably going to include it in my General Education seminar “Sherlock Holmes and Friends” in fall 2019.

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