I guess I have to begin this review by saying that Endless Night sadly won’t be going down in classic Agatha territory for me. I saw it on one of those ‘lesser-known-but-still-great’ Agatha books lists that you find scattered across the internet and apparently it was one of Agatha’s own favourites. As I was in the mood for a non-Poirot story, I gave it a go.
This stand-alone tale was published in 1964, making it one of her later works and (don’t get me wrong, I don’t regret reading it) it had many elements that made it enjoyable including a steady pace that keeps you engaged, a host of characters who might be up to no good and, interestingly, it did have a more chilling lasting effect on me than other Christie books I’ve read, which was a nice surprise. It doesn’t sit in straight-forward murder-mystery territory.
Narrated by Michael Rogers, he is a bit of a drifter, making ends meet with odd jobs when he meets and falls in love with the very wealthy American, Fenella “Ellie” Guteman. They quickly marry and together build their dream house on a plot of land known as ‘Gypsy’s Acre’, however, local legend has it that the land is cursed… Ellie is even warned away by an actual gypsy, but thinks it’s all superstition. But is it?
I think my main issue was that I couldn’t warm to Michael through the read – as the only narrator, this was pretty essential – so didn’t engage with the story as much as I would have liked to. Also, in regards to the plot, it reminded me of two other Agatha books – The Murder of Roger Ackroyd (1926) and Death on the Nile (1937) – so the element of eyebrow-raising surprise (that I love) wasn’t quite there for me at the end.
What’s interesting is that I have since read quite a few reviews about Endless Night and lots of people have it up there as one of their favourite Agatha Christie novels. Such is the subjective nature of reading!
Have you read Endless Night? I’d love to know your thoughts on it!
/ Audiobook narrated by Hugh Fraser
/ Running time: 6 hrs 13 mins
/ Published by Harper
/ Rating: 3/5