Friday, November 16, 2012

Book Beginnings: The Secret Adversary

Today, I have a submission for Book Beginnings on Fridays hosted by Rose City Reader. check the link to learn how to participate in the meme.

I enjoy participating because it forces me to stop and think about the book, why I like it (or not). And then I check out other posts and get some ideas for other types of books I may want to read. I tend to stay in the mystery genre, and it is good to consider other options.

I participated in this meme earlier in the year, then had some difficulties keeping up with a regularly scheduled event. But I am glad to get back to this meme and check out other posts submitted.

The  first lines of my book are...
It was 2 p.m. on the afternoon of May 7, 1915. The Lusitania had been struck by two torpedoes in succession and was sinking rapidly, while the boats were being launched with all possible speed. The women and children were being lined up awaiting their turn. Some still clung desperately to husbands and fathers; others clutched their children closely to their breasts. One girl stood alone, slightly apart from the rest. She was quite young, not more than eighteen. She did not seem afraid, and her grave, steadfast eyes looked straight ahead.
The book is The Secret Adversary by Agatha Christie, published in 1922.

Right away, the author tells us our time period and sets up an event that will guide the story for the remainder of the book. This is actually the beginning of a prologue. The book quickly moves to a year or so after World War I has ended.

This is a vintage mystery and one I probably read years ago. I am, however, planning on rereading a number of Agatha Christie books. This year I have been reading some books for the World War I Reading Challenge at War Through the Generations. Although this one does not focus on World War I, it does mention the problems that both men and women had finding jobs and readjusting to life following the Great War. And this time, as I read it, I have a little more understanding of that time.

I am enjoying reading this book. It is a lot less serious than the first few lines indicate, yet it is covering a serious subject. So far, my take is that it is an entertaining cozy mystery.


Laurel-Rain Snow said...

This does sound very captivating...thanks for sharing; and for visiting my blog.

Sandra Nachlinger said...

What a great opening! I'm intrigued by the 18-year-old girl who is so calm, and I'm wondering why. As you mentioned, the author did a great job of establishing the time, place, and defining event. By the way, I guess no one told Agatha Christie that writers aren't supposed to begin books with "It was...." (as in "It was a dark and stormy night.") It doesn't bother me!
My post today features FLIGHT BEHAVIOR by Barbara Kingsolver.

Brona said...

I love the Tommy & Tuppence mysteries - my favourite Christie detectives. I'm sure you will enjoy rereading this :-)

Prashant C. Trikannad said...

I reviewed this mystery by Christie a few weeks ago and though the adventure is set in the aftermath of WWI, with strong political overtones, I didn't like it as well as the Dame's other novels, particularly those involving her famous sleuth, Poirot.

Peggy Ann said...

Agatha is always a good read! The Tommy and Tuppence aren't my favorites of hers but this book is on my shelf. I must get to it soon!

TracyK said...

I did see your review and saw that you did not like it that well, and I have seen other similar opinions recently. I did finish the book last night and I liked it better than I thought I would. Sometimes it is hard to figure out what makes a book work for me, but that is the fun and work of writing a review.