A round of applause is in order for Sophie Hannah and The Monogram Murders. This new Hercule Poirot mystery—the first sanctioned by the Agatha Christie estate—went on sale last week and has blasted up to the #13 spot on the New York Times bestseller list. But it's not just book buyers who love this mystery; Sophie Hannah's addition to the Christie canon has also been showered with starred reviews.
On top of the starred reviews it has received from Publishers Weekly and Library Journal, The Monogram Murders has also been awarded another starred review from Booklist Online:
"The return of Hercule Poirot after a 40-year absence is certain to please the legions of Agatha Christie fans, young and old, forced to content themselves with rereading the master. Working with the authorization of the Christie estate, Hannah, known for her psychological thrillers, proves more than capable at re-creating the legendary Belgian detective, who once again puts his “little grey cells” to good use, this time in unraveling an exquisitely tangled triple murder. Attempting to take some time away from his regular detective work, Poirot is staying in a London residential hotel. One night, dining solo at a nearby café, he encounters a distraught woman who claims to be “beyond help.” The woman quickly disappears, but Poirot becomes convinced, for reasons we only learn much later, that she is somehow connected to three murders in an upscale hotel, crimes that have the Belgian’s hotel mate, Scotland Yard Inspector Catchpool, completely baffled. Poirot elbows himself into the action, mercilessly ordering Catchpool about while he interviews hotel staff and gets his deductive juices flowing. Hannah sticks to the Christie formula, embellishing now and again, and making the most of the hapless but quite sympathetic Catchpool as the largely clueless narrator. Not that there aren’t a plethora of clues on offer. Hannah lards this retro dish with a surfeit of red herrings and, of course, plenty of suspects, all of which will satisfy fans of Golden Age whodunits. Poirot is at his lordly, flamboyant best during the Great Reveal, staged at the hotel, which is likely to leave even the most determined clue-sniffers reeling. Christie devotees will be devoutly hoping that Hannah plans on a few more twirls of Poirot’s mustache. HIGH-DEMAND BACKSTORY: Morrow is pulling out all the stops to ensure that Poirot’s return is trumpeted wherever cozy fans take their tea."
Congratulations, Sophie, Hercule, and The Monogram Murders!