My memory is absolutely awful. Way more often than I’d like to admit, I completely forget the story line of books that I read. I last read Agatha Christie’s And Then There Were None in (maybe) 8th grade. Again, I can’t remember exactly. Despite not remembering the plot, I do recall really enjoying the whodunnit story and decided to read it again as an adult. In short, it’s about ten people that are lured into going on a remote island. Oddly enough, each of them has been, at some point in their lives, involved in a murder. When they start dropping like flies, it becomes clear that someone is administering what they believe is the appropriate punishment for those crimes. If you’re looking for an easy, entertaining, not-too-deep and utterly suspenseful read, I definitely recommend this book!
Major spoiler alerts ahead—you’ve officially been warned: Though I’d initially forgotten, I remembered that the judge was the murderer approximately one page into the book. I mean, c’mon … the guy’s name is JUSTICE WARGRAVE! How I didn’t pick up on this obvious foreshadowing in my youth, I don’t know. Even the character’s dialogue and mannerisms were a dead giveaway (pun intended). Anyhow, despite knowing the ending, I still really enjoyed my rereading of this story. The plot builds quickly and the characters all have distinct personalities with interesting back stories. While the text is a little dated, I still think of it as a classic. The idea of innocence is so subjective here, and it’s interesting that a retired judge is the one who decides to dole out the justice. A little ironic, but not really. The Ten Little Soldier Boys nursery rhyme (see below) really makes the story “fun” as you try and guess how the next guest will meet his or her end. If you’ve any interest, look up Ten Little Soldier Boys in relation to the book title. It’s got an interesting history to it, though I won’t explore it here as it has a couple of racial slurs in it’s “evolution”.
I decided to start watching the 1945 film version of the book today while it was still fresh in my mind. Though it had a certain charm to it like almost all black-and-white films do, it lacked the je ne sais quoi that the book had. I also hate when character names are changed in movie adaptations. It’s one of my major pet peeves. Totally unnecessary! Still, I’m quite happy to have revisited this riveting tale.
Next up, it’s back to contemporary reading with Harry Potter & The Cursed Child which I received as a birthday gift from my cousin. I just know it’s going to be epic!
Ten Little Indians by Frank Green
Ten little Soldier Boys went out to dine;
One choked his little self and then there were nine.
Nine little Soldier Boys sat up very late;
One overslept himself and then there were eight.
Eight little Soldier Boys travelling in Devon;
One said he’d stay there and then there were seven.
Seven little Soldier Boys chopping up sticks;
One chopped himself in halves and then there were six.
Six little Soldier Boys playing with a hive;
A bumblebee stung one and then there were five.
Five little Soldier Boys going in for law;
One got in Chancery and then there were four.
Four little Soldier Boys going out to sea;
A red herring swallowed one and then there were three.
Three little Soldier Boys walking in the zoo;
A big bear hugged one and then there were two.
Two little Soldier Boys sitting in the sun;
One got frizzled up and then there was one.
One little Soldier Boy left all alone;
He went out and hanged himself and then there were none.