Towards Zero is vintage Agatha Christie in that it involves murder in an English Country House, with a varied assortment of suspects.
The title is very apt, because we discover the factors that result in these people being in one particular place at ‘Zero Hour’. Namely, the moment of the murder.
We meet most of the protagonists before they arrive at the fatal spot.
The detective who handles and ultimately solves the case, is our old friend Superintendent Battle. This was his last appearance and we get to know a little of his private life, for instance we learn that he has a wife and no less than five children!
This is a definite favourite Agatha Christie Novel of mine. It’s beautifully crafted and we are told right from the start that we are being manipulated. We see the murderer plotting the whole diabolical scheme (without of course, being aware of who the murderer is.)
'This mind had only one thought and one purpose – the destruction of another human being…the scheme was being worked out meticulously on paper…every eventuality, every possibility was being taken into account….the main lines were clear and had been closely tested. The time, the place, the method, the victim! Yes, everything planned everyone’s reaction foretold and allowed for…'
Towards Zero is also vintage Agatha Christie as she uses that ‘sleight of hand’ that I refer to elsewhere on this website.
As Rolf Harris would say ‘do you know what it is yet?’
Do read it if you haven’t already done so – it’s a splendid example of Dame Agatha Christie's wonderfully devious mind.
Bet you don’t guess whodunit!
You can get hold of this excellent Agatha Christie book via the following links.Towards Zero