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The Monogram Murders  By  cover art

The Monogram Murders

By: Sophie Hannah,Agatha Christie
Narrated by: Julian Rhind-Tutt
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Publisher's Summary

Since the publication of her first novel, in 1920, more than two billion copies of Agatha Christie's books have been sold around the globe. Now, for the first time ever, the guardians of her legacy have approved a brand-new novel featuring Dame Agatha's most beloved creation, Hercule Poirot.

"I'm a dead woman, or I shall be soon.…"

Hercule Poirot's quiet supper in a London coffeehouse is interrupted when a young woman confides to him that she is about to be murdered. She is terrified - but begs Poirot not to find and punish her killer. Once she is dead, she insists, justice will have been done.

Later that night, Poirot learns that three guests at a fashionable London Hotel have been murdered, and a cufflink has been placed in each one’s mouth. Could there be a connection with the frightened woman? While Poirot struggles to put together the bizarre pieces of the puzzle, the murderer prepares another hotel bedroom for a fourth victim....

©2014 Agatha Christie Limited (P)2014 HarperCollins Publishers

What listeners say about The Monogram Murders

Average Customer Ratings
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Not Agatha Christie

What would have made The Monogram Murders better?

Where is the sparkling dialogue? Where is the sense of Poirot as a real person? Where is the exquisite language and subtle description that characterizes the best Agatha Christie novels? Not here. Even at 15 minutes in I was annoyed by unPoirotistic remarks made by Poirot, by overly colorful secondary characters, and by the strange narrator, who makes sweeping pronouncements.

What does Julian Rhind-Tutt bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

I would have put it down after page one.

You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

No

Any additional comments?

DO NOT PURCHASE

67 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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Disappointed

As an Agatha Christie fan I was looking forward to hearing the story that her family thought was worthy to bear her name. I sat down and began listening.

When last we heard about Poirot he had died. The story seems to have taken place after he retires, and works with a new (or at least a character I do not remember) Scotland Yard character. This character seems to be less policeman / detective like than Hastings, weak and ineffective. Poirot is both argumentative and bullying, and is giving orders to the Scotland Yard man - sorry, but he is not the boss of anyone & would not be ordering anyone about - he would be giving direction. Too much of the dialogue is repetitive or just plain lame.The Scotland Yard fellow goes on to have his own adventure - so not really a Poirot mystery.

I'm still listening to this, but am so disappointed that I had to go ahead and write this much of a review.

58 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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IS THIS SOME KIND OF JOKE?!?!

I can't even believe that ANYONE other than Agatha Christie would try to "write" a Hercule Poirot story! If an ordinary person could duplicate the genius of the most prolific mystery writer of all time, wouldn't we ALL try do it? I've read every Hercule Poirot mystery in print thus far. Some I bought in print version, then turned around and purchased the same titles on audiobook. I've read and listened to each Poirot book at least 5 times. I mourned when Poirot died in "Curtain: Poirot's Last Case" - a true literary masterpiece! So where did this out-of-chronological mess come from with no familiar or recognizable characters?

Let me see if I can tell prospective readers what is wrong with this book. Hmmmm.....how about EVERYTHING! Although Sophie Hannah was given the "blessing" of the Christie estate to complete an unfinished Christie work, it did not "bequeath" to Hannah Ms. Chrisie's awesome talent. The beauty of Hercule Poirot is his supreme confidence without being arrogant, his quiet dignity, and the well-known fastidious in his dress, toilette, and famous mustaches. Here he is depicted as over-bearing, conceited, and OCD. The narrator doesn't even come close to sounding like Poirot. Julian Rhind-Tutt can't seem decide if Poirot is French, Belgian, French-Canadian, Cajun, or black Créole! And who is that awful Scotland Yard person? Where is Captain Hastings? He and Poirot made a great team while this new "partner" is confrontational, disrespectful, and is always bumping heads with the great Poirot. Really, Whatever-Your-Name-Is from Scotland Yard? He's so unlikeable and forgettable that I didn't even bother to catch his name!

There are certain things in life that one doesn't mess with. NO ONE can sing "Respect" like Aretha Franklin, "Jailhouse Rock" like Elvis Presley, "My Way" like Frank Sinatra, dance like Fred Astaire, act like Bette Davis, smolder with sexuality like Elizabeth Taylor, or walk into a movie scene like Denzel Washington. There's no such thing as an "economy-priced" Maserati or a white boy who can rap like Eminem. There will be no more "wonders" like the Sphinx, Taj Mahal, or Grand Canyon. And no writer will ever be another Agatha Christie nor will there ever be a fictional detective to rival Hercule Poirot! Sophie Hannah must not have read "The Memo" about not messing with perfection - the rest of the literary world got it decades ago!!!

49 people found this helpful

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Disappointing

Would you try another book from Sophie Hannah and Agatha Christie and/or Julian Rhind-Tutt?

Not from Sophie Hannah but would listen to Julian Rhind-Tutt. Waited so long to get this book i even pre-ordered it. So very disappointing!!!

What could Sophie Hannah and Agatha Christie have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

Written a better mystery. So convoluted and boring talk that I really did not care who got murdered or who the murderer was. If it was in a book form I would have thrown it across the room!!!!

What do you think the narrator could have done better?

Narrator was fine with what he had to work with.

What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

Disappointment and frustration!

31 people found this helpful

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Tedious trash

This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

I have read all of the Poirot stories, some many times. Agatha Christie Limited will kill their golden goose with trash like this. Has Sophie Hannah even really read a Poirot story? This whole project shows no respect for Agatha Christie or her character. Just money grubbing morons. Read the real thing.

What could Sophie Hannah and Agatha Christie have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

I don't know Sophie Hannah. I know the works of Agatha Christi very well. Sophie Hannah does not. She has no respect for her character. The story it the most tedious I have every listened too. Sophie Hannah should watch the video on Acorn that is an interview with David Suchet about resecting the author and the character. David Suchet knows Poirot. Sophie Hannah does not.

Did the narration match the pace of the story?

The narration was fine. It is just that the story is so bad that it is had to admire the narration

If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from The Monogram Murders?

This is just a bad book. Agatha Christi at the end of her live wrote some not so good stories as "Halloween" but even her worst stories were 10 times better than this. The plot is ridiculous and contorted.

Any additional comments?

I hope this book goes out of print and there is never another fake Poirot. It might be possible to do if the author was really familiar with the material. I imagine that Agatha Christie Limited belongs to some huge company and they don't care about Agatha Christies legacy. The more recent "Marple" series where the story all changed around proof that. I can't stop this but it is a pity. I have listened to hundreds of books and this is the first book I where have felt strongly enough to comment.

26 people found this helpful

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Just plain bad on so many levels

What would have made The Monogram Murders better?

A better plot. A better author. A better narrator who could do justice to Poirot's accent. I think I am spoiled by David Suchet.

Has The Monogram Murders turned you off from other books in this genre?

No

Would you be willing to try another one of Julian Rhind-Tutt’s performances?

Maybe

If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from The Monogram Murders?

Many. So many of the scenes, especially the explanation scenes, went on and on and on and on...

Any additional comments?

My expectations were not high but this book fails on every level. The plot is not clever. The solution to the murders is absolutely absurd. I don't want to spoil the ending for anyone who can actually make it to the end without a rending of garments so I will just say there is no way in the real world this would have worked. The characters are uni-dimensional. Character motivation and actions are not true to life or to the basic laws of human nature. Poirot is reduced to an OCD parody in some sections of the book. And finally the author's writing skills are mediocre at best. There is a lot of "telling instead of showing". There is no subtlety of language.

25 people found this helpful

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Agatha Christie must spin in her grave...

What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

A different writer, a different story, different characters.... there is nothing which can be improved here.

What could Sophie Hannah and Agatha Christie have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

Most of the time it is a bad idea when greedy inheritors want to prolong the copyright. In this case it is devastating. I don't know why Poirot all of a sudden seems to be clairvoyant. And I especially don't know why this worst of all ever created Scotland Yard detective is behaving like a lunatic who is not at all fit for a police job. Maybe Ms. Hannah should have read the Poirot books more carefully...Poor Agatha Christie is dead and I can only hope that she makes sure that this sorry effort goes not unpunished in another life...

What do you think the narrator could have done better?

The narrator was okay, but also couldn't make a bad story good.

What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

Anger, disappointment (I didn't think it was that bad) - I will definitely never again buy any books from Ms. Hannah

Any additional comments?

Complete waste of a credit

24 people found this helpful

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Agatha Christie's Poor Imitation

I am an avid fan of Dame Agatha. She is unique and amazingly astute in her structure and use of words. Sophie Hannah has failed to emulate Christie's work. Using Poirot is not enough. The story went on and on and said in 400 pages what Agatha said better and more clearly in 200. The problem is that Ms Hannah felt the need to go over and over everything. I was bored by the end and very disappointed.

22 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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Ain't Nothing Like the Real Thing Baby

What did you love best about The Monogram Murders?

Hercule is always right...even when others think he is wrong. In the end he is Hercule and you cannot take that away from him.

What did you like best about this story?

It had a similar feel to the Death of Roger Akroyd. I was half afraid the author was going to steal that idea...but in the end she made it her own.

What about Julian Rhind-Tutt’s performance did you like?

I enjoyed the narration. Poirot's voice was good....but if I had left the audio for a moment and came back I could not determine the other characters. I found that Jenny's confession was nondescript.... part way through I forgot that it was a woman who was supposed to be speaking.
Jenny, Nancy and the cop could have all been the same person.

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

I was a little anxious....Poirot is not a coffee lover, yet he 'treats' himself to two coffees once a week. Also - since when did Poirot admit to making mistakes! Never - to my memory. I felt the writer did not know the character as well as they could have.

Any additional comments?

I think a story to itself it may have been okay...but the Agatha Christie people could have done better. That is just my humble opinion.

22 people found this helpful

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Monotonous

What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

Shorter plot More interesting characters.

What do you think your next listen will be?

An authentic Agatha Christie. No more copy cat writers.

What about Julian Rhind-Tutt’s performance did you like?

He did have flexibility.

You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

I'm searching for the answer.

Any additional comments?

I wasted a credit on this purchase. Much better authors out there.

18 people found this helpful

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  • mrsvee
  • 11-22-18

This is NOT Agatha Christie.

Perhaps this author thought by writing about an established character by a well known top author she would have success. Sorry dear. It is a poor excuse for an AC novel and I never want to read another story by you.

2 people found this helpful

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  • wiccachild
  • 03-17-20

Disappointing!

unfortunately this was a difficult book to get through. I have enjoyed Agatha Christie books for years, especially the Poirot series. I believe fans of Poirot would find this portrayal inaccurate.

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  • MumOfThree
  • 02-26-20

Christie was never this boring.

Nope, sorry, this just wasn't right. From the very first chapter all about him worshiping coffee (where's the teasan?) to the long and convoluted (even for Poirot!) conclusion, it just didn't feel right at all. The last three (at least) hours were spent on the conclusion and I'm still not sure exactly who dunnit or how, I'm just glad it's over! Way to much talking and too many changing ideas, and not much of it was clever. Such a shame.
I did like the new policeman companion, but he was treated so badly by Poirot, it was very frustrating. Julian Rhind-Tutt was excellent especially with all the massive speeches he had to do in a French accent! All his narration was spot on and I will definitely give other books he's done a try. But sadly, I can't say the same for any more books in this series - time to refresh my brain with The Mysterious Affair at Styles...

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  • Michelle
  • 09-12-19

New Christie

Well written in the style of Christie, really compelling read. The narration was great but there was a lot of variance in the volume which made some lines near impossible to hear.