And Then There Were None by Agatha Christie And Then There Were None, is an intriguing murder mystery novel that follows the lines of a poem called “Ten Little Indians”. The story is intricately written to keep the reader in absolute suspense from the beginning to end.
The novel involves eight people being mysteriously invited to spend a summer holiday on “Indian Island”. Among the eight are a judge (Justice John Wargrave), doctor (Edward James Armstrong), military general (General John Macarthur), former inspector/current private detective (William Blore), mercenary (Phillip Lombard), young rich athlete (Tony Marston), religious woman (Emily Brent), and a schoolteacher (Vera Claythorne). Additionally, a married couple consisting of a butler (Thomas Rogers) and a maid (Ethel Rogers) are both already present on the island. With the exception of the Rogers’, only the host, who is expected to arrive the next day, is absent. As the guests begin talking together, they discover that all of them were invited by a Mr. U.N. Owen. Wargrave surmises that their host’s name is fictitious since it so closely resembles the word “unknown.” The other guests agree, and tension begins to build. Another mystery is the fact that each of the guests has found a poem titled “Ten Little Indians” in each of their rooms, and mysteriously enough, it appears that there are ten small Indian statuettes arranged at the dinner table. It doesn’t take long for each of the guests to realize that the poem and statuettes are representative for each of them.
With passing of the first night’s dinner, the group hears a mysterious voice condemning each one of them to a specific murder. A phonograph i…
…led, and even made comments to other guests that he was ready to die. In an absolute panic, Vera ends up killing Blore and then, not being able to deal with what is happening, she commits suicide.
The last topic of discussion I found was the one pertaining to death. Death occurs continuously throughout the novel. After the guests realize that the other guests are not having mere accidents or killing themselves, they realize they are all going to die. With the exception of Wargrave, all of the island’s guests die. Rather, they are all murdered.
This was an exceptional novel, masterfully written to propel the reader into feeling the very same fears, doubts and suspicions as the characters. The only thing I didn’t like was the fact that Wargrave is never found, nor is there a mention as to why his body is never found.