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The Killings At Kingfisher House by Sophie Hannah. Book review by Andrew Mann.

Written by Andrew Mann

Review: The Killings at Kingfisher Hill by Sophie Hannah

The fourth Hercule Poirot novel by Sophie Hannah, The Killings at Kingfisher Hill is a whodunnit written in the style of legendary crime writer Agatha Christie. It captures all the magic of the books first published in the the 1920’s. At 330 pages, it is a very enjoyable read and I personally flew through it in a few short days.

The Killings At Kingfisher Hill Plot

The story begins with Poirot and his assistant, Inspector Catchpool boarding a coach to Kingfisher Hill; a country estate with several grand houses one of which we soon learn was the scene of a murder. Frank Davenport, disgraced son of the houses owner Sydney, has been pushed to his death from a balcony.

As with many crime books, the reader is challenged, along with Catchpool and Poirot to work out the identity of the murderer. Clues are littered throughout by author Hannah, however this one has a slightly unique twist in that, from the off, we know that one of the characters has already confessed to being the culprit. Of course, all is not as it seems.

The Killings At Kingfisher Hill Characters

In the first chapter we meet “ Joan Blythe”, another passenger boarding the coach. She reveals that she has been warned previously that if she sits in a certain seat she will be murdered. This, of course, ends up being the case although in typically genius circumstances. The mystery of how this scenario came about runs alongside the murder, and is brilliantly unraveled by Poirot and explained in the conclusion of the book.

As the chapters unfold we meet more characters, all of whom come under suspicion from the various Davenport family members. From friends, Verna and Godfrey, to Oliver; fiancée of the deceased mans sister. To further add to the plot, a second murder takes place within the house during the investigation, which adds further mystery to the plot.


I absolutely loved this book. It was very funny in places, especially the dialogue between Poirot and Catchpool at times. I felt as though I could relate to the narrator, Catchpool, who is always one step behind in his thinking and never quite works it all out until the very end. The ending for me was very satisfying. It gave a watertight explanation to all the events of the book in an ingenious manner that I would never have guessed.

If you like classic crime/ mysteries. I would definitely recommend this book for you. It is a great read that more than does justice to the style and character made famous by Agatha Christie. It can, of course, be read as a stand alone novel having not read any Poirot before.

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