When I was a teenager—probably around 14—I remember a summer that mostly involved sitting in a beach chair by the lake in my backyard, reading Agatha Christie novels and taking a swim or a sail every now and then. I had a great tan that summer, and I remember the satisfaction of finishing one mystery and picking up the next one immediately.
I've been telling my 13-year-old daughter about that idyllic Agatha Christie summer, so I picked up Murder on the Orient Express to see if the mystery still satisfied me. There was my old friend with the awkward name, Hercule Poirot, given the task of finding a murderer. (I read the books before I took French, so I can only imagine how I pronounced that name in my head.) And the mystery unfolded with layer after layer of lies and deceit, mixed with coincidences—or not. Of course I didn't have any recollection of how the whole thing turned out, since my last reading was 30 years ago. That was a nice surprise.
So am I going to go on another Agatha Christie reading spree? Nah. I might pick up another couple sometime when I need a break between heavy reading, but that's probably about it. But I do think I'll encourage my daughter to give Christie a try this summer. Too bad we don't live on a lake.