If you include Agatha Christie’s short stories, this classic whodunnit first published in 1950 is the 50th work by the world’s unrivalled queen of crime fiction. Christie’s own story is truly remarkable, not least because of her phenomenal sales record that is only surpassed by Shakespeare and the Bible, and she displays her mastery to the full on this occasion.
By its very nature, murder is usually committed by stealth. But not in this gripping tale. Instead, it is preceded by a printed announcement in a local paper which gives both the intended time and place for the deed. Not surprisingly, this ghoulish announcement excites the curiosity of local people and a crowd gathers at the location on the day to see if the whole thing is a foolish prank. Three shots later and the mystery is laid out for Christie’s formidable elderly spinster, Miss Jane Marple, to investigate in her inimitable fashion.
Since first publication, this intriguing story has been variously produced for stage, radio, television as well as serialised in print. In this engaging BBC CD audiobook available on CD or as an MP3 download, June Whitfield takes on the role of Miss Marple, and successfully matches Joan Hickson’s defining performances in this part. A must-have addition to any Christie audiobook collection.