One of the books I received in the August crime and mystery box from My Chronicle Book Box was A Different Kind Of Evil by Andrew Wilson. This is the second book in Wilson’s series which features beloved crime writer Agatha Christie herself, as she finds herself caught up in some sinister goings on. I hadn’t read the previous book in the series, A Talent For Murder, but was looking forward to reading this one as the premise of the novel and its 1920’s setting appealed to me.
From what I can gather, the events in A Different Kind Of Evil continue from those in A Talent For Murder, where Agatha Christie is recovering from some harrowing events from the preceding months. With her daughter and her secretary in tow, Christie sets sail on a cruise ship bound for the Canary Islands. But whilst this may appear to be an act of rest and relaxation, her trip is not just a holiday, and it is one on which she has been sent by the Intelligence service to investigate the mysterious circumstances surrounding an agent’s death. But events aboard the SS Gelaria take a more sinister turn when a young woman falls to her death from a ship in what appears to be suicide. However, it soon transpires that there is more to this tragedy than meets the eye, and as the story progresses and Christie arrives at a hotel in the Orotova valley, she begins to uncover some dark secrets, and she begins to realise that more lives are under threat. This makes for an intriguing read, as Christie tries to get into the minds of the enemy, and unravel the truth before more lives are taken…
I thought this was an enjoyable book to read as a standalone although given the back story and the events building up to this trip I think it may be worth reading the previous book to get a bigger picture, although this story does begin with a recap of key events which I found useful. I didn’t know a great deal about Agatha Christie’s life so was interested to read that this particular novel is inspired by her real life journey to Tenerife which was a journey of significance for her in her life and career. The plot has a classic murder mystery feel to it, with plenty of interesting characters to meet which leaves the reader wondering who can be trusted and who has something to hide. And of course, Christie herself makes for a fascinating lead character as she finds herself in an increasingly dangerous situation, attempting to draw from her own experience of plotting a crime to get to the bottom of this mystery. I finished this book in only a couple of sittings and I loved the era and the setting used, and it kept me interested as it built up to its conclusion.
A Different Kind Of Evil is an enjoyable read which had a few surprises along the way, and with a vibrant cast of characters to keep you guessing. This seems like a book that would appeal to readers who enjoy a classic mystery story, and I would be interested in reading another book in the series!