Murder on the Orient Express by Agatha Christie
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Agatha Christie was a genius. I figured I'm a relatively intelligent person, I'm good with logic puzzles, I should be able to get this. I wasn't even close. Genius.
Oh, and I also liked the use of stereotypes. The Americans had afflicted speech, the English were characterized as stodgy, and the Russian woman was ugly and extravagant. If I were teaching a course about stereotypes, I'd assign this book. I especially love how the non-Poirot investigators (whose characters are there simply so Poirot has someone to talk to and to be the dumb ones who don't figure out the answer) rely primarily on the stereotypes (it had to be a woman, because the murderer was clearly in a fit of rage and women are emotional), while Poirot remains open-minded (mostly). Wow, run-on sentence! Whee!