This is part of the Alphabet of Crime Fiction series. Big thanks to Kerrie for doing the leg work. You can show your appreciation by heading on over to Mysteries in Paradise and either signing up or cheering everyone on.
M is for Murder in the Mews
Barbara Allen lies dead of a gunshot wound. Her lifeless body is discovered by her roommate, Jane Plenderleith, who has just returned from the country. She immediately calls the police who in turn inform Japp who brings in Poirot. Poirot hunts around in wastebaskets, sniffs the air, observes the writing bureau and leaves assured that not all is what it seems. Why is the pistol in the right hand of the murdered woman when the bullet hole is on the left side of her head? Was it murder? Who could have done it? Could it be the roommate? Jane Plenderleith is described as a “cool, young woman” who is well in control of herself. But then why is she afraid to show her briefcase to the police? Why does she throw the briefcase away the first chance she gets. Could the murderer be Ms. Allen’s fiance, the pompous Charles Laverton-West M.P., whose alibi for that night is shaky. Could it be the mysterious Major Eustace, who Ms. Plenderlieth calls a “doubtful customer” and who is seen leaving the house that night.
Murder in the mews appears in a collection of three novellas – Dead Man’s Mirror, Murder in the Mews and Triangle at Rhodes and was first published in 1937. The story is typical Christie with a number of red herrings, rather curious behavior by Poirot and a smug Japp, all neatly wrapped up in a very British mystery. Just right for reading with your afternoon tea and biscuits.
Fact of the week that might interest only me – Did you know that Agatha Christie has written nearly 25 books/novellas/short stories that start with M and that’s not counting the ones that start with The or A?