The Tuesday Night Club is the name for a varied group of guests who challenge each other to solve recent, and not so recent, crimes. It begins one evening when the group gathers at Miss Marple’s house and the conversation turns to unsolved crimes. Over the weeks, we learn about the case of the dripping bloodstains, the thief who committed his crime twice over, the message from the death-bed of a poisoned man who talked of a 'heap of fish’, the strange case of the missing will, and a spiritualist who warned that ‘Blue Geraniums’ meant death.
Pit your wits against the powers of deduction of the ‘Tuesday Night Club’. But don't forget that Miss Marple is present. Sometime later, many of the same people are present at a dinner given by Colonel and Dolly Bantry. Another set of six problems. Even later there's a thirteenth. Can you match Miss Marple's performance?
The 13 stories are: 1. The Tuesday Night Club, 2. The Idol House of Astarte, 3. Ingots of Gold, 4. The Bloodstained Pavement, 5. Motive v. Opportunity, 6. The Thumbmark of St. Peter, 7. The Blue Geranium, 8. The Companion, 9. The Four Suspects, 10. A Christmas Tragedy, 11. The Herb of Death, 12. The Affair at the Bungalow, and 13. Death by Drowning.
Librarian's note: this entry is for the collection of short stories, "The Thirteen Problems." Entries for each of the stories are located elsewhere in Goodreads. There are 12 Miss Marple novels and 20 short stories, thirteen of which are in this collection. The 20 short stories about Miss M can be found by searching Goodreads for: "a Miss Marple Short Story."
This best-selling author of all time wrote 66 crime novels and story collections, fourteen plays, and six novels under a pseudonym in romance. Her books sold more than a billion copies in the English language and a billion in translation. According to Index Translationum, people translated her works into 103 languages at least, the most for an individual author. Of the most enduring figures in crime literature, she created Hercule Poirot and Miss Jane Marple. She atuhored The Mousetrap, the longest-running play in the history of modern theater.
The youngest of three children of the Miller family. The Millers had two other children: Margaret Frary Miller (1879–1950), called Madge, who was eleven years Agatha's senior, and Louis Montant Miller (1880–1929), called Monty, ten years older than Agatha.
Before marrying and starting a family in London, she had served in a Devon hospital during the First World War, tending to troops coming back from the trenches. During the First World War, she worked at a hospital as a nurse; later working at a hospital pharmacy, a job that influenced her work, as many of the murders in her books are carried out with poison. During the Second World War, she worked as a pharmacy assistant at University College Hospital, London, acquiring a good knowledge of poisons which feature in many of her novels.
Her first novel, The Mysterious Affair at Styles, came out in 1920. During her first marriage, Agatha published six novels, a collection of short stories, and a number of short stories in magazines.
In late 1926, Agatha's husband, Archie, revealed that he was in love with another woman, Nancy Neele, and wanted a divorce. On 8 December 1926 the couple quarreled, and Archie Christie left their house, Styles, in Sunningdale, Berkshire, to spend the weekend with his mistress at Godalming, Surrey. That same evening Agatha disappeared from her home, leaving behind a letter for her secretary saying that she was going to Yorkshire. Her disappearance caused an outcry from the public, many of whom were admirers of her novels. Despite a massive manhunt, she was not found for eleven days.
In 1930, Christie married archaeologist Max Mallowan (Sir Max from 1968) after joining him in an archaeological dig. Their marriage was especially happy in the early years and remained so until Christie's death in 1976.
Christie frequently used familiar settings for her stories. Christie's travels with Mallowan contributed background to several of her novels set in the Middle East. Other novels (such as And Then There Were None) were set in and around Torquay, where she was born. Christie's 1934 novel Murder on the Orient Express was written in the Hotel Pera Palace in Istanbul, Turkey, the southern terminus of the railway. The hotel maintains Christie's room as a memorial to the author. The Greenway Estate in Devon, acquired by the couple as a summer residence in 1938, is now in the care of the National Trust.
Christie often stayed at Abney Hall in Cheshire, which was owned by her brother-in-law, James Watts. She based at least two of her stories on the hall: the short story The Adventure of the Christmas Pudding, and the novel After the Funeral. Abney Hall became Agatha's greatest inspiration for country-house life, with all the servants and grandeur which have been woven into her plots.
To honour her many literary works, she was appointed Commander of the Order of the British Empir
Some folks grow up fast through their consternation at being morally compromised, and some do their sudden growing up in the intuited truth of moral alienation.
Agatha Christie and I grew up in the rarer, latter group. But to the first group belongs the larger mass of humanity. C.S. Lewis would simply say the first group has "turned.”
If you are morally alienated, like Miss Marple and her creator, you know your own kind is an endangered species. You watch your words. Christie has Jane Marple say, in this collection, that “most people are neither bad not good, but just silly.”
Christie became alienated through listening to her grandmother trying out loud to get to the bottom of what a neighbour had said to young Agatha. For her grandmother, too, was morally alienated. Christie's alienation happened in her empathy with her...
Agatha Christie's wise grandmother learned the hard facts of life when her own mother sent her away to stay with her relative. Only that vacation was to be made permanent, for financial reasons.
So moral alienation was the result for both of them.
As it was for my own maternal grandmother.
Snatched by friends and family from the surviving family circle of her siblings after their parents both died, she was purposefully, morally alienated by her new caregiver, her more practical Aunt Stuart.
There was a shared, melancholy disquiet and resignation to Christie's grandmother's anxiety for young Agatha, too, as there was in my own grandmother's - Gagi's - educative anxiety for me.
And then for me, too, when my parents unwillingly though pre-emptively abandoned me to a local hospital. My grandmother's nascent melancholy became permanent that day.
That rupture, though final, has healed for me with my own religious resignation.
Yet for all of us came an important insight.
It was, quite simply, that the morality of our fractured innocence is not held in common with the rest of our peers.
Fight or Flight won't heal that rift. Only the calm resignation of Faith does that.
To be set apart is a blessing in disguise.
Being an old fool is not such a bad thing, either.
And on this Titanic Ship of Fools called planet Earth, Christie and her grandmother, Miss Marple, and I and my Gagi all KNOW we're morally alienated -
Probably the most well-known collection of Miss Marple's short stories. And definitely worth a read if you're a fan of the character. I've left links to each individual story that leads to a slightly longer review if anyone is interested in a particular short.
The Tuesday Night Club The Origin of The Marple! Yes, this is the first Miss Marple story, and I don't really think you can call yourself a superfan if you haven't read this one. #loser
The Idol House of Astarte Miss Marple and her Tuesday Night Club friends listen to the clergyman of their group tell a story about the time he witnessed a man killed by seemingly supernatural forces. The beautiful young socialite, Diana Ashley, convinces the other guests to play dress up and go out to the supposedly sacred grove of Astarte (on the property) that had a small temple/house there. It's all fun and games till the owner of the house, Sir Richard, falls over dead with a stab wound and there's no knife to be found. How did this toga party go so wrong?!
Ingots of Gold Once again the Tuesday Night Club meets up, and this time it's Miss Marple's own nephew, writer Raymond West, who tells a story. He hopes that the group (well, actually Miss Marple) can figure out what happened when his friend, John Newman, was kidnapped while his salvage ship was robbed of its treasure.
The Blood-Stained Pavement This time when the Tuesday Night Club meets, Joyce (Raymond West's future wife) tells the story of her time painting in the small coastal village of Rathole. She witnesses a husband and wife go off on a bathing trip with a woman they ran into when they got to the hotel. Without realizing what she was doing, Joyce painted blood stains onto her painting. When the wife drowns a few weeks later, Joyce wonders if she had some sort of a premonition.
Motive v. Opportunity What is it with so many of Christie's characters getting taken in by spiritualists all the time!? I'm guessing that was probably a very talked-about THING back in the day. Ooooh! Did you hear about Gertrude? She's been seeing that Madame Zartan on the regular since her husband died, and I'm pretty sure that wacky bitch is bleeding her dry. I'll bet her kids won't inherit a pot to piss in by the time she's done. Or something along those lines. Point is, vulnerable people have always existed to become the prey of unscrupulous snake oil salesmen. Marple hijinks ensue.
The Thumb Mark of St. Peter This is a good one for 2 reasons. 1) Miss Marple takes her turn and tells the Tuesday Night Club of a murder that she helped solve. 2) In an adorable twist, Ramond West teases his Aunt jane that there is at least one thing she doesn't know. But she pops back and shocks him by telling him that she does know he proposed to Joyce (the artist in the group) that very evening.
The Blue Geranium There once was an annoying hypochondriac who drove her husband crazy with her outrageous demands over her health and drove everyone else crazy with her poor me attitude, as they all knew she wasn't really sick. However, after a visit from a fortune-teller warns her to beware the blue geranium sends her into a frenzy, and the blue geranium pops up on the wallpaper in her bedroom, the woman mysteriously does die! Was this a true paranormal event? Or did someone succeed in offing the woman? Miss Marple to the rescue.
The Companion Miss Marple solves the case of the lady's companion who drowned off the shore of Gran Canaria island. How? She noticed a bit of weight gain for what it was.
The Four Suspects Sir Henry Clithering, a member of the Tuesday Night Club, takes his turn and tells a story. The title refers to a running theme in Agatha Christie's mysteries, where the goal of solving a murder isn't just to punish the guilty but to free the other parties who might be suspects from the suspicion of their friends, neighbors, and loved ones.
A Christmas Tragedy Miss Marple knows a murdering husband when she sees one. Even if she can't prove it right away. Jane Marple recounts the time she couldn't save an adoring wife from her treacherous spouse. Without any proof and only her intuition to go on, she couldn't convince the young woman that her husband was eyeballing the windfall he would receive upon her death.
The Herb of Death It's Mrs. Bantry's turn to tell a story to the Tuesday Night Club and she's not at all sure she can make her's sound interesting. And to be fair, she hems and haws and does a fantastic job of messing it up. It's a case of (gasp!) poisoning where everyone got sick but only one person died. Was it an accident that there was foxglove in the sage, or did something more nefarious happen?
The Affair at the Bungalow This is the last mystery told by a member of the Tuesday Night Club, and this time around it's the ditzy but beautiful actress, Jane Helier, who offers up a crime for the group to solve. It seems as though a local bungalow was burgled and the man in custody for the robbery has a crazy story to tell...
Death by Drowning A local girl, rumored to be pregnant by an out-of-town architect, is found drowned. The locals assume it was suicide because her father is known to be an unreasonable man. But Miss Marple thinks there may be a murderer on the loose.
This story is the only one not set in the Tuesday Night Club, but it was because of Miss Marple's uncanny ability to suss out killers and solve the mysteries during those nights that Sir Henry Clithering takes her seriously and investigates the girl's death.
A highly recommended set of stories for any Miss Marple fan!
The Thirteen Problems (Miss Marple #2), Original Publication Year 1932, Agatha Christie
Abstract: While genial gentle soft white-haired Jane, in black lace cap and mittens of the time, knits, her Tuesday week visitors present early experiences, recently solved usually by confession of participants, for consideration by their club: Sir Henry Clithering last Commissioner of Scotland Yard, nephew writer Raymond West, artist Joyce Lemprière, elderly clergyman Dr Pender, dried-up little bespectacled solicitor Mr Petherick.
Characters: Miss Jane Marple, Sir Henry Clithering last Commissioner of Scotland Yard, nephew writer Raymond West, artist Joyce Lemprière, elderly clergyman Dr Pender, and dried-up little bespectacled solicitor Mr Petherick.
تاریخ نخستین خوانش: روز بیست و پنجم ماه نوامبر سال2011میلادی
عنوان: سیزده معما، مترجم: مهوش عزیزی، تهران، نشر کتاب هرمس، نشر کتابهای کارآگاه، 1388، ادبیات پلیسی و جنایی در255ص؛ شابک9789643635954؛ چاپ دوم سال1390؛ چاپ سوم سای1392؛ چاپ چهارم سال1393؛ چاپ ششم سال1400؛ موضوع: داستانهای کارآگاهی از نویسندگان بریتانیا - سده20م
سیزده معما (چیستان)، دومین ماجرا یا همان آنچه گذشت «خانم مارپل» است، در این داستان در یک مهمانی شام، میهمانان تصمیم میگیرند، کلوپی ایجاد کنند، که در آن، هر یک از اعضاء، باید معمایی طرح کنند، تا دیگران پاسخ آن معما را گمان بزنند؛ در آغاز، اعضاء با تردید، شرکت «خانم مارپل»، در آن کلوپ را میپذیرند؛ اما با گذشت روزها مشخص میشود، که او با تیزهوشی خویش، تنها کسی است، که هر بار راز معماها را آشکار میکند؛ بیشتر معماها، درباره ی جنایات گشوده شده هستند، و دیگر اعضا باید با توجه به داستان، هویت قاتل را کشف کنند؛ در مسیر داستان کتاب، معماها یک به یک مطرح، و گشایش آنها توسط «خانم مارپل» عرضه میشوند؛ ایشان عمر خود را، در دهکده ی کوچکی زندگی کرده، و به ندرت از آنجا خارج شده است، اما با تیزهوشی خود پاسخ چیستانها را مییابد
تاریخ بهنگام رسانی 17/06/1399هجری خورشیدی؛ 31/02/1401هجری خورشیدی؛ ا. شربیانی
Group read 2021 So, recently when reading a book with a collection of short stories, I commented briefly, story by story, so here we go:- The Tuesday Night Club The initial meeting of the club, at which Miss Marple is almost an afterthought, discusses the poisoning of a housewife, but who could have done it as everyone eat the same meal. Sir Henry puts forward the case, but it is our heroine who solves it, 1-0 Miss Marple. The Idol House of Astarte Proposed as a mystery by the Rev Dr Pender, this story focusses on what at first sight appears to be an impossible murder, with over a yard (metre) between the possible murderer and the victim, with a crowd of people watching. 2-0 Miss Marple Ingots of Gold This is Miss Marple's nephew's story, Raymond West the famous author. Set in the depths of Cornwall, this story focusses on Pirate Gold, or is it ? 3-0 Miss Marple. The Bloodstained Pavement Joyce Lemprière, the famous artist, is the next of the Tuesday Club members to put forward a mystery, again set in Cornwall. Set 5 years previously this mystery looks at the unexpected death of a man's wife whilst bathing. Her and her husband had met a friend of her husband the day before. But was it murder 4-0 Miss Marple. Motive vs Opportunity Mr Petherick the lawyer goes next, and he puts forward the tale of a man heavily swayed by a clairvoyant against his family. Changing his will, to leave all his money to the spirit guide, his quickly occurring death sees a blank piece of paper instead of the new will. solution provided by JM, 5-0 The Thumb Mark of St Peter Miss Marple herself goes next and tells the story of the unexpected death of her niece's husband, and the subsequent rumours circulating about his possible murder. When an exhumation does not solve the problem, the result is non conclusive, Miss Marple focusses on his final words about fish. The Blue Geranium A slight change of format for this story, sees Sir Henry Clithering persuade Dolly Bantry to invite Miss Marple to be the 6th person at their dinner party. Colonel Bantry provides the story this time of a friend of his, rumoured to have killed his wife. Flowers in the wallpaper changing colour and a mystic who disappears do not stop Miss Marple from solving the problem. The Companion Dr Lloyd the village doctor goes next, and recounts the tale of many years ago when he worked in the Canary Islands. Two middle aged English women, arrive on holiday, and within a day one of them accidentally drowns whilst swimming, or did they ? Miss Marple is reminded of Mrs Trout in her village parallel and solves the case. The Four Suspects Sir Henry goes next and remembers a tale from his police days involving a secret society and a brave man who acted as a witness, before having to hide under an assumed name. Unfortunately he is is murdered so it seems obvious he has been tracked down, however only 4 people could have murdered him, and none of them have an alibi. All should have been above suspicion, but now all were under suspicion, despite no evidence against any of them. Miss Marple's knowledge of flowers leads to a solution. A Christmas Tragedy Miss Marple is persuaded to share another story next. On a vacation at a spa , she is struck by a supposedly loving couple, and how to her the man is not as loving as he seems. When his wife has two "accidents" in quick succession, Miss Marple is convinced but has no proof. Expecting a delay before he tries again, Miss M is shocked to find the man's wife dead the next day, with the husband having a cast iron alibi, or has he. Miss Marple solves the problem when a hat doesn't fit. The Herb of Death Dolly goes next and provides a few basic details of what seems an accidental murder when digitalis leaves are mixed up with herbs. Or was it deliberate. And although everyone who eat the meal was ill, why did only one person die? And who had the most to gain? Miss Marple uses her knowledge of local people to identify who had the most to gain by the death of the young woman. The Affair at the Bungalow Next to put forward a story is the beautiful but dim actress Jane Helier.Pretending this mystery concerns a "friend" of hers, fools no-one, and she soon trips up on her pronouns ! Regardless, who did lure her fan to the bungalow, drug him and ransack the house whilst the real owners were absent ? Typically Jane has not understand the game, and has no answer either, but unsurprisingly Miss Marple has, and it is not the answer Jane was expecting. Death by Drowning The following morning to the night before's mysteries sees Sir Henry having breakfast with Arthur Bantry when news of the suicide of a local girl, who had got herself pregnant is announced and discussed by the Bantrys. Shortly after Miss Marple calls to speak to Sir Henry, she knows its not suicide and passes Sir Henry a piece of paper with the name of who she thinks is the murderer upon it. Trusting her, Sir Henry makes himself known to the local investigators and tags along as they discover it was murder after all. Despite all the evidence pointing towards a ne'er do well from the smoke, Sir Henry perseveres and unsurprisingly Miss M is correct.
Group Read of all AG Marple's 2017 Another wonderful Marple book, this time 13 short stories (not that you'd guess from the title lol). As per usual Joan Hickson, sorry I mean Miss Marple, was at her absolute best. As with the majority of Agatha Christie books, I know I read this eons ago, but thankfully I only remembered a couple of the stories, so was able to play "guess the perpetrator" along with the collected ensemble at St Mary Mead. Very enjoyable again, now onto the next ha ha. What a fantastic challenge this is.
The Thirteen Problems is my second buddy read this month, celebrating Agatha Christie's birthday with my pal, Medhat. We live halfway across the world but chat about books all the time via messenger. This time, we chose one of her short story collections... and originally, we planned to read one per day leading up to her birthday. But... I have no self-control and said I couldn't do it. Instead, I read half one day and half the next day. They're just too easily devourable, to coin a new word for today.
The premise: Miss Marple and 5 friends are together one evening when they decide to tell real-life tales about potential killers or mysteries... some want to stump the others. A few are looking for answers. No one thinks the 'old lady from the St. Mary Mead small village' would have any value in her input. Boy, were they wrong! I think she solved at least 10 of the 13 unsolved mysteries herself. Obviously these people didn't know her well, or perhaps Christie was just going for a bit of punny humor. Either way, they made for a delightful read, and I enjoyed all of them.
Some had similarities, but for the most part, the characters and settings were different, or the way in which the story was told was different. Basically, 1 of the 6 reveals what (s)he knew of the crime. The others ask a few questions until they come up with the logical solution. Most guests give up. Miss Marple usually says "I wonder... doesn't anyone else find it weird that..." and then the analysis begins. In the end, the rest are astonished at her worldly knowledge. Ah, I'm beginning to see why I love the woman so much, and there's a 90% chance I'm morphing into her with each day the passes.
If you need thirteen little reasons to convince yourself that Christie is the actual queen of crime fiction, then look no further. These thirteen tales are bound with a loose narrative that links them all, and each one had me sleuthing and deducing to solve the crime before the beloved Miss Marple did.
As with much of Christie's work, I found this a very autobiographical piece. All the characters, at one point, display interests that match Christie's own, and speak of anecdotes that parallel her own life - and none more so than Miss Marple. Her speech is littered with 'clues' that, I believe, Christie included as instructions to the reader. There are the quite literal clues in the text that help us to solve the crime, and there are the more subtle ones that act as an insight into Christie's mind frame: she hints repeatedly of things "that would stare you in the face, if there weren't such a lot of red herrings to draw you off the trail."
We are reminded that the "art of writing gives one an insight into human nature" and perhaps that's what makes this such a superior read. Christie's character portrayal and plot are as alive today as they were 80 years ago when they were imagined. After all, "human nature is much the same everywhere".
This has definitely taken the second spot, next to And Then There Were None , in my list of favourite Christies.
Este libro ha caído de la manera más inesperada a mis manos. Ahora tengo toda la colección de Miss Marple en casa y sé que sí o sí seguiré leyendo todo sobre ella este año. Creo que es un personaje interesante, observadora y atenta, tiene varios ingredientes para triunfar en el corazón de los lectores. Además es una viejecilla que resuelve crímenes sin ser detective, inspectora o policía, ¿Quién no querría leer más sobre ella, una anciana muy achispada?
En fin, que dejando eso de lado (a veces empiezo mis reseñas de la manera más absurda e innecesaria) este libro como tal es una colección de 13 relatos donde se protagoniza algún asesinato y donde al final se dan todas las respuestas al caso, algo diferente a lo usual en Agatha Christie es que estos no son episódicos y tienen una correlación directa. La historia empieza cuando están reunidas cinco personas en la casa de Miss Marple y comienzan a contarse entre ellos historias de crímenes apodando a sí mismo la reunión como el Club de los Martes. Luego hay otros seis casos más contados tiempo después y el último capítulo es un asesinato que ocurre en tiempo presente y como siempre, la querida y observadora anciana tiene la respuesta y al culpable.
Creo que me ha servido para conocer a la protagonista y si bien no estamos en su mente, ni sabemos cómo funciona a profundidad su manera de pensar podemos encontrar comentarios irónicos y acertados en sus intervenciones. Podemos ver cómo la subestiman y cómo siempre los deja callados. Creo que me suena un poquito a características de una Mary Sue, porque hay un perfeccionismo y una evidente ganas por hacerle ver más inteligente que al resto pero se lo perdono porque bien dicen que la edad es sinónimo de experiencia y la señora es muy sabia y siempre tiene algo con lo que comparar o entablar relación.
Así que eso, quiero seguir viendo a ver cómo puede sorprenderme esta señora y qué aventuras sangrientas le deparan.
In a Nutshell: Sorry, Christie fans. But maybe this isn’t the right work to know Miss Marple better. I just don’t feel like continuing with this anthology. 😢
Miss Marple had long been on my agenda as many of my friends who are Christie fans were sure that I would love her. I began my Marple journey with this anthology because the first story, “The Tuesday Night Club”, is known for having the very first print appearance of the legendary Miss Marple. I always love to see how an author introduces a staple character the very first time.
The author's note reveals that Agatha Christie considered Marple at her best in short stories, unlike Poirot, who "insists on a full-length book to display his talents." As I have now read two full-length Marple novels, 2 full-length Poirot novels, and a part of this Marple anthology, I strongly disagree; Miss Marple also needs a full-length novel to reveal her talents. These short stories start and end before anything of value happens.
I realised one crucial difference between Marple and Poirot. Both are intelligent, but Poirot claims it proudly while Marple keeps pushing herself down. This is annoying after a point. I also got tired of Miss Marple always saying, “Well, of course, I recall a similar case in my village,” and then showing how this clue or the other clue confirmed her suspicions. How many murders and crimes can happen in a small village!??! If there was a variety in the crimes, it would have been more believable.
There are a few quotable quotes in this collection, which isn’t what I can usually say for anthologies.
The premise is simple. A few people come together in a room – the first six stories had the ‘Tuesday Night Club’, the next five that I read had a dinner party where the guests entertained each other with mysteries. In both the scenarios, one of the gathered persons reveals a mystery, the answer to which is known only to that person. The remaining try to solve it individually. Every single story has Miss Marple guessing the right answer. I understand why this is done but it gets boring after a while.
I have posted the reviews to the initial stories on their respective Goodreads pages. Here’s a recap and an update on the other ones I read.
7. The Blue Geranium: A Miss Marple Short Story Things move beyond the Tuesday Night Club. There’s a dinner party to which Miss Marple is invited at the behest of Sir Henry Clithering. Thus, only the scene changes; the rest of the events are the same. This could have been an interesting story but too convoluted and too many characters for a short. Interesting resolution that again makes use of Christie's know-how of science and toxicology, but doesn't fit in with Miss Marple's persona. There is a titbit that she was a nurse earlier. I suppose that goes some way to explain her knowledge 2.5 stars
8. The Companion: A Miss Marple Short Story Guess the dinner party mentioned in the previous story now serves as the new setting for these narrated mysteries. This tale is interesting but muddling. The resolution is farfetched. Once again, Marple/Christie seems to be relying on the assumption that people remember clothes but not faces, which isn’t always true. 2 stars.
9. The Four Suspects: A Miss Marple Short Story Continues at the same dinner party. Somewhat gripping but again, a bit convoluted. It mentions who did it, but not the how or the why. So some things still remain a mystery. Despite this, it is one of the better tales in this collection. 3 stars
As I have read only eleven out of the twenty stories in the collection, I am just a little above the halfway mark. But I will still leave this title without a rating as I don’t think it was the right book for me. Marple/Christie aficionados might enjoy it better. I am neither.
Miss Marple is the queen of whimsy, just as Dame Agatha Christie is the queen of crime. Back ramrod straight, twinkling eyes, sometimes hands busy with knitting, there seems always something more to what meets the eye, with Jane Marple.
There are some people who, when young, have an air of old people who have been airbrushed into false youth. But there are other people, who, when old, you can imagine them how they must've looked when they were into their thirties.
Miss Marple is a throwback to an early age. Pious, puritanical, she still does what is required of her in her stories. That is solve crimes. The plot is mainly about people meeting at a social dinner and each person proposing a mystery. Each mystery is a conundrum, begging to be solved by anyone who can. And Marple doesn't simply can, but explains how she had come upon the solution.
The majority of the mysteries involve murder. I found my attention undivided. I silently praised Agatha Christie with some of the inventive writing she dishes out. I think this book was written when the author was at her prime. I say this because each of the short story could have been a full fledged novel. It's an undiluted fare that is up within the reach of anybody who will accept this offering. This particular one, makes me long for more of Marple. I prefer her to Poirot, you know? But we must be satisfied with the dozen of Marple books or so. I'm grateful for this type of stellar storytelling.
Before Miss Marple appeared in her first, full length novel, she featured in short stories; the first in 1927. This collection was first published in 1932 (The Murder at the Vicarage, the first Miss Marple novel appeared in 1930). Although these are short stories, there are links which make these more enjoyable than some collections of random stories.
We begin with stories told at a group called, “The Tuesday Night Club,” in which Miss Marple, her nephew, Raymond West, artist, Joyce Lempriere, solicitor, Mr Petherick, Dr Pender, a clergyman and the retired Commission of Scotland Yard, Sir Henry Clithering, meet to discuss mysteries. These are solved successfully by Miss Marple, but part of the joy of this section of the book is the little group of characters so beloved by Agatha Christie – the clergyman, the lawyer and the, almost obligatory, attractive young woman.
This group changes slightly in the second part of the book, where Sir Henry Clithering is the guest of Colonel and Mrs Bantry. Asked if he would like to suggest someone as a sixth for dinner (along with Dr Lloyd and the beautiful actress, Jane Helier), Mrs Bantry is surprised when he suggests Miss Marple. Again, the dinner party ends in a similar way – with every person telling a mystery that needs to be solved and where Miss Marple, again, triumphs with her village parallels.
The last story, “Death by Drowning,” is slightly different, in that Miss Marple, discovering that Sir Henry Clithering is staying in St Mary Mead, asks for his help in solving the death of a local girl. This is a very enjoyable collection, with clever plots and enjoyable scenarios. Interestingly, the village of St Mary Mead is mentioned in the Poirot novel, “The Mystery of the Blue Train,” and Miss Marple – although she did not appear as often in print as Christie’s Belgian detective, is almost as beloved and popular. This is certainly a very enjoyable collection, even for someone like me, who does not normally enjoy short stories.
February 2, 2022: I noticed on Goodreads there's a link to a supposedly free Kindle version of this book. It does not take you to it but to some random ghost story by someone I have never heard of. Also my own library does not have this one in stock. I bought this paperback version back in 2019 in order to complete my Miss Marple reads. Of course I read this one towards the end of my reading of the series and am glad now that I have read it in the order I was supposed to. If anyone is looking for this though, you may want to check for it under its other known name "The Tuesday Club Murders".
In this collection of short stories you not only get a sense of Miss Marple as a character, but a sense of what others initially think of her, and how their opinions has changed over the years. Initially seen as being very Victorian by others, Miss Marple comes into her own in these stories and you see how shrewd she really is. One wonders if Miss Marple had been a man, would she have ended up working for Scotland Yard. The number of people who ended up going to her through the years to solve murders ends up being a lot.
We also get a look at Miss Marple's nephew (who was a pain) and he is referred to in other works. But we also get a look at other characters who appear again like Dolly, her husband Colonel Bantry, and Sir Henry Clithering.
All though this is still a favorite of mine, some of the stories didn't work for me this time through. I ended up not really enjoying the The Idol House of Astarte, Ingots of Gold, or the Affair at the Bungalow.
I bought this book in paperback a while ago and though I had started some of the stories, I never got around to finishing it in one good. Not because I didn't love it or anything, I just got busy with other books. I thought this was an overall great short story collection featuring Miss Marple and some familiar characters like her nephew Raymond West and her close friend Mrs. Dolly Bantry.
The overall book is about how a group of people who get together every Tuesday night will tell a true story of a crime with people guessing who dun it and why. Initially Miss Marple is dismissed by her nephew and others, but of course us long time Miss Marple fans know that she's quite shrewd and is one of the best amateur sleuths out there! Then the collection shifts to another night where mysteries are told with the last story taking place in the "present" with Miss Marple figuring out who killed a young girl with Sir Henry assisting.
The Tuesday Night Club (5 stars)-There is a gathering of people at Miss Marple's home in order to meet her nephew, Raymond West who is a writer. Raymond brings a long a lady friend, Joyce who is also an artist. The other characters are Sir Henry Clithering ( former Scotland Yard), Dr. Pender (who I think or recall is a clergyman), and Mr. Petherick who is a solicitor. As I said above, the group starts discussion unsolved mysteries with all of the participants (except for Miss Marple) saying how well they would do at solving crimes. They all agree to meet every Tuesday to tell a real mystery to each other while others will try to solve it. Raymond is quite dismissive of Miss Marple and saying how her mind is like a sink.
The first story is told by Sir Henry who discusses how a married woman fell ill after eating and now there is a question of whether she was murdered or not. Sir. Henry lays out all of the facts and after everyone guesses (wrongly) Miss Marple is the only one to figure out who did it.
The Idol House of Astarte (4.5 stars)-This one I thought was a bit confusing though I liked the solution. This story is told by Dr. Penders and involves going to a house party of a friend of his after he bought a home. It becomes apparent that Dr. Penders friend Richard is infatuated (I am going to use that word) with a young society woman named Diana. After they all dress up and go off to an old temple that is left on the grounds. A man somehow is struck down and killed though no one touched him. Dr. Penders leaves the solution to the problem to the group. Miss Marple knocks it out of the park again.
Ingots of Gold (4 stars)-This was my least favorite story. Probably because Raymond is the storyteller in this one and he honestly irked me. That and this story is a long time going before anything interesting happens. To cut to the case, a man is found tied up and there's a question of who tied him up and who was behind smuggling some supposed Spanish gold in the area. I do have to love how Miss Marple figured things out (a gardener plays a part) and Sir Henry backs her up since he knows something about the case.
The Blood-Stained Pavement (5 stars)-Joyce is the storyteller in this one and I really enjoyed it. Joyce goes to Cornwall and happens to come across a couple and another woman. What I liked about this one is that this story involves a painting and Joyce not realizing what she is seeing at the time. When a body is washed up later there's a question of who it is and who did it. Miss Marple again figures out the solution and I loved how it was solved.
Motive v. Opportunity (4.5 stars)-So I don't know about this one, especially since it involves some rich people gaining an inheritance through trickery. Either way it was a pretty solid story told by the character of Mr Petherick who goes into him dealing with the writing of a will of a client of his. Pretty much the client had three grandchildren who should inherit, but he started to become involved with a spiritualist. There's a question of a hidden will and what happened to it in this one. Miss Marple strikes it right again.
The Thumb Mark of St. Peter (5 stars)-The last story is told by Miss Marple and rightfully no one figures it out. I liked how the story involved a niece of hers who is being accused of murder.
The Blue Geranium (5 stars)-This is the beginning of stories not told in the club. We have Sir Henry return in this one and is visiting with familiar characters most Christie fans should know, Colonel Arthur Bantry and his wife, Dolly. What made me laugh is that readers know how close these two and how often Dolly appears, but in this one Dolly doesn't want to invite Miss Marple to a dinner she is throwing, but does after Sir Henry insists. Other people are invited, an actress named Jane and a Dr. Lloyd. Colonel Bantry has a mystery he wants solved and once again Miss Marple figures it out while everyone else struggles.
The Companion (5 stars)-I liked this story told by Dr. Lloyd but really hated the ending. I like the bad guys to get some comeuppance though the murderer did in the end, I just hate why the victim was killed and that Dr. Lloyd kept his own counsel. Anyway the story involves a time when Dr. Lloyd was staying on an island and came across two women. One of them ends up dead. And then months later the only surviving woman dies as well. At this point you should realize Miss Marple figures out the solution to the mystery.
The Four Suspects (5 stars)-This one was really good and another story told by Sir Henry. He has four suspects in a murder case with him realizing that three of them have to be innocent and it's causing all of them to be under suspicion and to not trust one another. He wants to figure out who killed a man in order for at least three of his suspects to move on.
A Christmas Tragedy (5 stars)-Miss Marple tells this one about her coming across a married couple that felt wrong to her in some way. It ends in tragedy, but no one else is able to guess how the wife of the married couple ended up murdered and by who.
The Herb of Death (5 stars)-This is another good one and Dolly Bantry tells this one. A story of an older man whose ward is poisoned after she ingests foxglove. There's a question of whether it was an accident or not. The young woman's fiancee marries another woman who was known to both of them so there's a question of did he do it, or did his now wife. I loved the solution to this one a lot!
The Affair at the Bungalow (5 stars)-This one had me howling. Jane (the actress) tells this one and had everyone ready to throttle her in the end. I did love though how neatly Miss Marple realizes what is going on and clues Jane into things.
Death by Drowning (5 stars)-The last tale in this collection and it's not a story. Instead Sir Henry comes back to St. Mary Mead and finds out that a young girl was found drowned. There's a question of suicide or did the young man who had "gotten her into trouble" have something to do with it. Though Sir Henry is retired, Miss Marple reaches out to him to investigate based on who she thinks did it and why.
When one utters the word "detective" or "sleuth", what is the image that comes to mind? A studious gentleman with monocle wandering about with a magnifying glass? A trench-coated, lantern-jawed, hard-boiled individual prowling the back alleys of dark America? Or... a little, pink old lady sitting in the corner, trying to catch up on her knitting?
For fans of Agatha Christie's Miss Marple, the third image is as valid as the first two.
This unlikely detective relies on her intimate knowledge of human nature, having had "the opportunity to observe it at close quarters" in a village like St. Mary Mead, to solve mysteries. She compares the love affair of her nephew Raymond West with that of the milkman and the maid: and when the self-important, intellectual, avant-garde novelist is shocked that he could be compared to such a lowly individual, Miss Marple says affably that "everyone is very much like" everyone else. It is this predictability of human nature that the old lady draws upon to arrive at her conclusions.
The Thirteen Problems contains two sets of six stories each in the same format. A group of individuals are relaxing with drinks after dinner in a cosy British parlour. Each of the people tell a story - a real life mystery the solution to which only he/ she knows - and the others have to guess. The idea is mooted by Raymond, who is initially incredulous that his aunt wants to "play" at all. However, his incredulity changes to bewilderment and grudging admiration ( a sentiment shared by others at the gathering) when Miss Marple emerges the winner each and every time, by comparing it with a village parallel.
One of the members of the gathering is Sir Henry Clithering, retired Commissioner of Police. He and Miss Marple are the common factors in the second set of stories, where the parlour is different and the participants are different. However, Miss Marple comes up trumps once again. Sir Henry leaves with lasting respect in his mind for this "finest sleuth" in the world.
Which is why, in the last story, he prepares to take on the task Miss Marple has entrusted him with: save an innocent from punishment for a crime which he has not committed. Armed with the foreknowledge of the name of the person Miss Marple thinks is the murderer, Sir Henry is able to succeed. The story ends with the significant sentence:
Miss Marple had been right again.
Yes, it has indeed become a habit for this little old lady.
Everyone would have their own favourites in this collection; mine are The Idol House of Astarte and The Blue Geranium. However, each one is a gem.
“Raymond West blew out a cloud of smoke and repeated the words with a kind of deliberate and self-conscious pleasure …”
Consider being a fly on the wall at a regular dinner gathering of six long-time acquaintances – Joyce Lemprière, the artist; the well-groomed man of the world, Sir Henry Clithering; the parish’s elderly clergyman, Dr Pender; writer Raymond West (and almost certainly a stand-in avatar for Agatha Christie herself à la Alfred Hitchcock); the solicitor, Mr Petherick; and, of course (last but hardly least), our soft-spoken, gently smiling and perennially knitting Miss Marple . Each guest, in their turn, takes a crack at befuddling the other guests with some sort of puzzle, mystery, murder or disappearance in which they had been involved and had mystified all those involved at the time of its occurrence.
As I read through the anthology, it occurred to me to wonder whether Isaac Asimov’s CASEBOOK OF THE BLACK WIDOWERS, written late in the 20th century, was perhaps Asimov’s means of paying homage to Dame Christie’s clever meme for the basis of a collection of short, snappy mysteries. I began my review of one of the collections, which ran to six installments, with:
“The drill with Asimov's BLACK WIDOWER mysteries (in music circles, one might call these "divertimenti") is well known to dedicated fans. Six members of the Black Widowers Club (chauvinists one and all, "no women allowed", if you puhhlease!) meet once a month at their club for a gourmet dinner. The members of the group - a lawyer, a cryptographer, a math teacher, a chemist, a mystery writer, and Henry, their inestimable waiter - never fail to ferret out an interesting mystery, theft, disappearance, swindle or some other form of interesting puzzle … Despite the collective intelligence of the group (which Asimov humorously portrays them as being inordinately proud of), the solution of the puzzle always seems just beyond their grasp. Henry, in a quiet, self-effacing manner that doesn't quite succeed in covering his own serving of pride, comes to the rescue with the solution and the explanations for the other members and readers alike!”
If Henry and Jane Marple were to square off against one another in a face-to-face contest of IQs, mental acumen, and puzzle-solving ability, it would no doubt be a close run contest with no clear winner. BUT, as to the stories, well now, that’s a different matter entirely. Asimov is the clear winner by an enormous margin peppering his delightful tidbits with cynicism, word play, jokes, puns, locked room mysteries, irony, sarcasm and other quiet diversions. As much as I love Agatha Christie’s mysteries, THE TUESDAY CLUB MURDERS are, sad to say, quite pedestrian and humorless. Their solutions, only apparent to Miss Marple, of course, consistently seem to arrive from left field deus ex machina, impossible to predict or ferret out in advance by even the most astute and attentive reader.
A three star rating at best rounded UP in deference to my love of Agatha Christie which is wounded but not down for the count!
مجموعة من الأصدقاء والأقارب يُقرروا إنشاء نادي ليعرضوا فيه ألغاز غامضة.. قصة "ألغاز لم تُحل" هي أحدى قصص "نادي الجريمة" وأعتقد أنها أول قصة حيث أنهم قرروا إنشاء النادي في هذه القصة.. القصة رائعة وأعجبني خليط الشخصيات فيها من رجل دين ومُحامي وكاتب وربة منزل وفنانة ورجل بوليسي.. وكلاً منهم يقوم بعرض رأيه فتشعر فيه بشيء من الصواب حتي تُفاجئ بلمسة آجاثا في آخر القصة.
وحدها مس ماربل قادرة على حل أصعب الألغاز من مقعدها وهي تمسك بين يديها المغزل وتحيك في هذه المجموعة القصصية تجتمع ماربل وابن اختها الكاتب ريموند والسير هنري الضابط المتقاعد من سكوتلانديارد مع مجموعة أخرى من الاصدقاء ويروي كل واحد منهم لغزا سمع به أو عاشه ويحاول البقية كشف ملابسات القصة ليأتي الحل الصحيح دوما على يدي العزيزة ماربل
"من الألغاز 13 استطعت أن أعرف القاتل في " بيت عشتروت الوثني " و" المرافقة وفي " الدافع مقابل الفرصة " استطعت أن أخمن بعض التفاصيل المتعلقة بالوصية قصة " الرصيف الملطخ بالدماء " ذكرتني برواية " الشر تحت الشمس " والتي كان بطلها بوارو .. فالمكان والحبكة وأسلوب القاتل متشابهان إلى حد ما وربما اعتمدت كريستي على قالب تلك القصة لبناء روايتها فيما بعد
الغريب بقراءتي لهذا الكتاب هو معرفتي بحل الكثير من الجرائم الواردة ويعود ذلك لسببين لا ثالث لهما إما أن قراءاتي الكثيرة لكريستي اكسبتني بعضا من خبرة ماربل في كشف وتحليل 😎😄 النفس البشرية أو ربما أصبحت قادرة على تشغيل خلاياي الرمادية بسرعة كما بوارو
والسبب الثاني والذي أرجحه بقوة 😂😂 هو قراءتي للمجموعة في بدايات دخولي ♥️لعالم أجاثا .. ومع ذلك استمتعت بقراءتها وبتنوع القصص
“Miss Marple,' said Sir Henry, "you frighten me. I hope you will never wish to remove me. Your plans would be too good.”
This book of short stories is a little different. Instead of just having one tale after the other with no connection, Christie links them with a narrative. Well, three to be precise. The first six stories are part of the Tuesday Night Club, a gathering of several people who decide to tell each other mystery/crime stories in order to allow the others to solve them and exercise their brains. Miss Marple is of course badly underestimated, but as you can guess, she beats everyone down and earns herself the respect of her peers, especially Sir Henry Clithering, an ex-Commissioner of Scotland Yard. The following six stories are told during a dinner party, held by said gentleman, again with the same guessing game, while the final tale is quite different - Miss Marple goes to Sir Henry to ask him to investigate an apparent ‘suicide’ and find out the real culprit, which she has already uncovered but has no means of action.
I very much enjoyed this, although since each story was so short, it made it even harder to find the solutions. Still, there is so much fun in seeing Miss Marple being overlooked time and time again as that old lady with her knitting, and yet beat everyone down with her analytical brain and vast life experience.
This book is almost like a sample of Agatha Christie/Miss Marple it's thirteen very short mystery's which give you a glimpse into Miss Marple's marvel.
I did enjoy this book but I thought some of the stories were a little too short, others a little long and convoluted. There is no doubt that Agatha Christie can write a good who done it after reading this book. I'm looking forward to reading more. Miss Marple doesn't seem like a criminal mastermind but I know who I'd want help from if I ever decided to get rid of anyone.
I think most of the intrigue involving Miss Marple is the fact that she is just a little old lady from a village - how can she know so much?
Overall a nice little read, not perfect but enjoyable. I hardly thought of this as a 'old' or 'classic' read, yes there are a few words or phrases that show the books age but otherwise its not noticeable.
PopSugar - 2019: #30. A book featuring an amateur detective An author's work - 2019: Agatha Christie
The thirteen problems or The Tuesdays Club murders, as this book is also known, is the second book that Agatha Christie wrote with Jane Marple as the protagonist. The book is made up of thirteen stories that each of the members of the Tuesdays Club tell, and which consists of a mysterious case that they have to resolve among themselves, of course, the only one capable of solving them all is Miss Marple. I marvel more and more at the portent of the woman who was Agatha Christie, her imagination and mastery when it comes to posing and solving crimes has no equal. ================= Los trece problemas o Los asesinatos de El Club de los martes, como también se conoce este libro, es el segundo libro que Agatha Christie escribió con Jane Marple como protagonista. El libro consta de trece historias que cuenta cada uno de los miembros del Club de los martes, y que consiste en un caso misterioso que deben resolver entre ellos, por supuesto, la única capaz de resolverlos todas es la señorita Marple. Cada vez me maravillo más ante el portento de una mujer que era Agatha Christie, su imaginación y dominio en lo que respecta a plantear y resolver crímenes no tiene igual.
"There is a great deal of wickedness in village life. I hope you dear young people will never realise how very wicked the world is."(PG. 69)
This was a fun, such a fun, read! It is a group of friends that get together and start talking about mysteries, with known endings, that have happened to them and they want to see if anyone in the group can guess the outcome. Each chapter is a new person telling their story for the group. Of course, Miss Marple is there to solve all the mysteries and makes them look like no brainers. First, the group just feels sorry for her, being elderly and from a village, but the more she relates village life to everyday human activity to the crimes being told the more the group is impressed by this perceptive old woman. I think she even manages to spook some of them.
I liked that Agatha Christie jam packed these mysteries in one book and made it so engaging so that each new crime or mystery was enjoyable and had their "AHA" moments in my noggin'. Would very highly recommend. I was skeptical as I liked Hercule Poirot but once you meet Miss Marple she will give you some sense and a good giggle.
I've seen so many Miss Marple adaptations I'm glad I've finally made the decision to read the books. I've only read two of the books in the series now, but I can already say that you can never go wrong with the character. The Thirteen Problems (aka The Tuesday Club Murders) is a great sequel and I loved seeing more of our titular character. Plus, I couldn't resist all of the twists and turns and red herrings. My only issue: I wasn't all that interested in the rest of the cast of characters.
Gran libro con el que me reconcilio de nuevo con Miss Marple. Quería aprovechar para transmitir un mensaje ante la emergencia del CORONAVIRUS: leamos tranquilamente en casa y tratemos de limitar al máximo las salidas, eliminando las innecesarias. #YO ME QUEDO EN CASA. Ayudemos a nuestros profesionales sanitarios, quedarse en casa hoy es cuidar de ti y cuidar de otros. Quedarse en casa hoy puede salvar vidas. En compañía de un libro se hará mucho más sencillo.
What a great entertainment! Simply brilliant! This is a re-read, but my first time reading it in English. Miss Jane Marple is simply adorable, knitting while listening to the stories and then surprising everyone with the solution. Some of the “problems” were a bit unbelievable for me, but they are so well told and developed that I ended accepting. This was a perfect “cozy” read. I tried the audiobook (available on YouTube) narrated by Joan Hickson, the actress who portrayed as Miss Marple on the BBC TV series, but I couldn’t enjoy it.
Miss Marple y los 13 problemas ha resultado un total acierto en todos los aspectos: interesante, entretenido, ágil, y con esa estructura dividida en relatos que me ha encantado. Miss Marple, una vez más, me ha ganado. Reseña completa: http://fiebrelectora.blogspot.com/201...
This is a book compiled of 13 individual cases that are being recounted. Miss Marple always sharp confounds her companions with her ability to see through the red herrings and get to the heart of the matter. She attributes this ability due to her understanding of human nature from a lifetime spent in a small country village. There are some statements and observations in this book that did make me laugh and that would probably not get past politically correct censorship in this day and age.
Several people get together during various occasions, and they decide to tell stories... of the mysterious murder kind. To a fan of historical romances, I suppose this would count as the equivalent of parlor games? Only so much more fun. And to make things even more interesting, the storyteller won't (at first) reveal the murderer's identity.
A book with 13 distinct puzzles penned by Agatha Christie? Christmas has indeed come early. Specifically by 2 days, according to the date I started reading this book. Each and every story was engaging enough, interesting and had me constantly wonder about the identity of the murderer. Of course I never guessed any of them, but trying was nonetheless fun. I didn't even mind (much) when people were not even attempting to guess the culprit in Miss Marple's stories.
The only downside was the lack of whimsical humor, which was so enjoyable in the first book of the series.
Score: 3/5 stars
With the large number of stories, some of the details started to blur together. Still, as an exercise in who-dunnit logic, it was a fun read.