I’ve been reading Agatha Christie’s books in publication order. This is the 17th book and one of the few that does not feature one of her famous detectives. There is no Hercule Poirot, no Miss Marple, nor Tommy and Tuppence.
In Why Didn’t They Ask Evans? Ms. Christie introduced Bobby Jones and Lady Frances or Frankie. These two don’t show up again in another novel and that’s fine with me. I just couldn’t connect with them. Maybe Ms. Christie didn’t like them either.
Bobby and Frankie have been friends since childhood although they are separated by class. Bobby has been serving in the navy so they haven’t seen each other in a while. But now they team up to solve a murder mystery.
While golfing Bobby discoveres a man who has fallen over a cliff. When Bobby got to him the man died shortly after opening his eyes and asking Bobby, “Why didn’t they ask Evans?” The only hint as to the man’s identify was a picture of a beautiful young woman. While Bobby is waiting for help to arrive another man comes along and offers to stay with the body so Bobby can go to his father’s church. Bobby is late and he had promised his father he would play the organ. Frankly, I thought his father would have understood but . . .
Bobby actually forgot about the dead man’s final words until much later. In the meantime there is an inquest and the appearance of some people Bobby doesn’t trust. When Bobby is nearly poisoned, Frankie and Bobby are convinced the man who died on the cliff must have been murdered. They set out to prove it.
This is not my favorite of Agatha Christie’s mysteries. The two main characters didn’t work for me and I thought the story rambled around. The ending took forever. If you haven’t read any of Christie’s works, I wouldn’t start with this one. (My choices would be Murder At the Vicarage and/or Murder On the Orient Express.)
If you are interested in accepting a challenge to read Agatha Christie’s books, visit Kerrie at Mysteries In Paradise.
Why Didn’t They Ask Evans? was published in the UK in 1934. It was published in the US as The Boomerang Clue (Dodd, Mead & Company, 1935). My Rating: C+.