Murder on the Orient Express - And Then There Were None by Agatha Christie: Curriculum... by Agatha Christie
; Dimensions (in inches): 0.25 x 11.25 x 8.75
Publisher: Center for Learning; Teacher edition (December 1992)
4 of 10 people found the following review helpful:
Applied Topic, September 6, 2000
from Walden, NY United States
Agatha Christie is considered one of the greatest mystery writers of all time. She has written countless mystery novels, as well as an autobiography. The novel, And Then There Were None, is considered to be one of her best works. She tells the story of ten people, brought to the mysterious Indian Island, who are accused of murder by a Mr. and Mrs. Owens. One by one, each person dies, according to an old nursery rhyme. Each person did commit one or more murders, and they suffer from the insanity of knowing that what they did cannot be changed. Agatha Christie wrote this story to give the reader an understanding of human nature. She went into the mind of a killer and explained how he/she thought and acted. The manner in which she writes helps us identify with the characters and learn what drives each to insanity and finally kills each of them. The killers are tormented by their pasts mistakes, and one way or another, they would have died. Either by killing themselves or being killed by another member of the ten. Ms. Christie used the poem, Ten Little Indians, to identify each character with his or her death. Each character was an Indian. In the story, she wrote the Indians as being selfish and devious. Looking out for themselves. Because of that, each Indian was punished, by death. The Indians were tormented, not knowing which one of them was next to die. No matter what precautions they took, someone had to die next, until one was left to hang herself. The main idea of the story is that one must realize that appearances can be deceiving. All the Indians on the island appeared to be fine people. But underneath all the glamour, was a hidden side of them. For example, Vera Claythorne, the beautiful woman, whom no one thought was capable of murder, was. She had worked as a governess, in charge of Cyril Hamilton. But while she was supposed to be watching Cyril, her lover came, and by being careless of her charge, she caused the death of the child. Cyril drowned in the sea. No matter how she tried to ignore the fact that she had killed him, it was her fault the child died. And on the island, she would also kill Philip Lombard, as well as finally killing herself. Miss Claythorne finally went insane with the thoughts of Cyril's death, and after killing Philip, she went upstairs and hung herself from a hook on the ceiling. Today, people cannot trust everyone they meet. Just because someone may have fancy clothes, good looks, and fine speech, doesn't mean they are what you see. For, underneath all that could be a person with a horrible past. For example, with the technology we have in today's society, most people own a computer or have access to one. And most computers have the Internet. Online, you can do a great many things. Look up information, play games, and send letters (e-mail). You can also chat to people too. Sometimes, you can chat with your friends, by knowing their screen names. But in other cases, you might chat with a stranger. Someone could say they are sixteen, when they might be thirty-three. And someone can also say they are from Nevada, when they actually live in Vermont. And if you don't know these things, you might believe them, and trust that they are telling you the truth. Now, not everyone is lying like this, but people do that to gain your trust. And if you give out certain information, you can be in a dangerous situation. For this thirty-three year old person from Vermont might decide to pay you an unwelcome visit. This shows you how dangerous people can be. To conclude, And Then There Were None is a fine novel and takes you inside the criminal mind. It sheds a whole new light on mystery and crimes. It was a wonderful mystery and Agatha Christie truly is one of the best mystery writers. Her works show such preparation and thought that only someone with true talent can transfer these thoughts onto paper. And for a woman in her time period to accomplish such is an amazing feat. She sets an example for writers to come.