"Elinor Katharine Carlisle. You stand charged upon this indictment with the murder of Mary Gerrard upon the 27th of July last. Are you guilty or not guilty?"
Harriet Vane had Lord Peter Wimsey, and Elinor Katharine Carlisle has Peter Lord. Though her hero is not an amateur detective, but a country doctor. Still, Peter Lord, who fell in love with Elinor at first sight, has the wisdom to seek the best of the best to clear her name: Hercule Poirot. He wants Poirot to find evidence that will acquit her of murder. Is love blinding him? Is the woman he loves guilty of murder? It seems that she had opportunity to kill her aunt (supposedly out of greed) and Mary (supposedly out of jealousy). But Lord and Poirot doubt the supposed motives. They see other possibilities.
I loved this one. I just LOVED it. I loved the characterization! I loved the story! While Peter Lord is no Lord Peter, I did enjoy him very much! I was quite surprised by how pleased I was that Elinor had someone on her side. Not that Elinor was completely lovable. She was flawed--very flawed. But still. By the end, I was seeing her through Peter Lord's eyes, I was seeing her with love.
"One does not practice detection with a textbook! One uses one's natural intelligence." (196)
"One must understand with the cells of one's brain before one uses one's eyes."(196)
"One always likes to know exactly what lies have been told one."
"Did Welman tell you a lie?"
"Who else has lied to you?"
"Everybody. I think: Nurse O'Brien romantically; Nurse Hopkins stubbornly; Mrs. Bishop venomously; You yourself--"
"Good God!" Peter Lord interrupted him unceremoniously. "You don't think I've lied to you, do you?"
"Not yet," Poirot admitted.
Dr. Lord sank back in his chair. He said, "You're a disbelieving sort of fellow, Poirot." (198)
© 2011 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews