The Seven Dials Mystery

This is one of Christie's novels that is rarely mentioned. I read it recently and found it to be middle of the range as far as Christie books go - which still makes it an excellent read. The solution completely shocked me, I would never have guessed it. What does everyone else think of The Seven Dials Mystery?


  • tudestudes Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
    I have to say that when I read this book for the first time, I loved it. But when I re-read it, I thought it's a nice book. I love Bundle and, as you said, the solution is astonishing. It's very pleasant and funny to read it. Although I don't feel the same enthusiasm that overwhelmed me years ago.
  • I've only read it once and I found it great fun. I didn;t like Chimneys, so I wasn't expecting to like it. It has many twists. I think that it's a good fun book. It doesn't have the impact of Then There Were None or Death On The Nile, but still enjoyable.
  • Tommy_A_JonesTommy_A_Jones Gloucestershire, United Kingdom

    I think it is much better than Middle of the range, I think it is very good but prefer The Secret of Chimneys, That might have something to do with the fact I saw it on Video years before I read it, for Middle of the range books I think of Hickory Dickory Dock, Five Little Pigs., One Two Buckle My Shoe, The Murder of Roger Ackroyd, Lord Edgware Dies and CATP. 

  • I guess maybe it is slightly better than her average book. Don't get me wrong, I enjoyed reading it and I waas left wondering until the end. Bundle certainly added some spice to the book.

    Tommy did you see the 80's adaptation of Seven Dials?
  • tudestudes Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
    It would be nice if Bundle had appeared in more books. She's smart and funny. I would like to have read more of her adventures.
  • I think Bundle is great, but I suspect that after she married Bill, she wasn't included as B&B wolud be too much like Tommy and Tuppence.  If they's been a prequel where Bundle got into scrapes when she was younger and single, would have been fun.

    In some ways glad she always remains young in the books.

  • ZeddieZeddie Ballymoney, United Kingdom
    I love the Seven Dials mystery and think the ending is fantastic!
    The television adaptation is excellent and I dont want to give too much away if you haven't seen it but its very strange watching James Warwick ( aka Tommy Beresford in the LWT adaptations) in a completely different type of role!

  • Yeah I have seen it. It seems the directors of those movies in the 80's used the same cast just about for every movie!
  • ZeddieZeddie Ballymoney, United Kingdom
    I know! They are really enjoyable though!!
    I love all those old programmes- partners in crime, the Agatha Christie Hour... I wish they had made more! Especially the Tommy & Tuppence stories!
  • Tommy_A_JonesTommy_A_Jones Gloucestershire, United Kingdom

    Yes Lachy  I have it on Video, I love it, sadly I saw itbefore reading the book so knew who the Murderer was when I read it, but I can enjoy both, It is such a shame they didn't do The Secret of Chimneys First which |I think is a better book, I think Harry Andrews is Great as Battle although I was surprised they picked such an old actor, when I looked him up I wondered if the bit about the Detective being a Homosexual in Poirot's Cards On The Table was a nod to him.

    I alsowish the Other Novels had been done with Francessca  Annis and James Warwick  

  • I haven't read Chimneys yet but yeah I envisaged Battle to be a bit younger than he was in the movie. It's always a shame when you see the movie/adaptation before reading the book. That's happened to me with a lot of Miss Marple's and so I've been putting them off, and hopefully when I decide to read them I'll have forgotten what happened.

    I think James Warwick in particular is well suited to the kind of laid back, chirpy young man which he plays in those movies.
  • Tommy_A_JonesTommy_A_Jones Gloucestershire, United Kingdom

    There is only 1 I can't rem,ember who dunnit and I have read it too.

  • youngmrquinyoungmrquin Buenos Aires, Argentina
    I really loved this one, a truly outstanding stand-alone in my opinion.
    The book is fantastic in the sense it uses the usual big international intrigue so common in AC thrillers of this period and turns it upside down. It also succeds in terms of making us readers see the same as the main characters. In other words, the book plays with us and our perspective of what we consider real.
    Maybe the wrong about it is the very common and typical scene of AC thrillers in which a character is spying a reunion of a secret organisation (where the boss is not present). We've seen different versions of the same scene in various stories. Other than that, it's fantastic.
  • Tommy_A_JonesTommy_A_Jones Gloucestershire, United Kingdom
    Yes I love the way she re-works some Ideas in Imaginative ways
  • tudestudes Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
    I've just re-read it. Marvelous book! I love Bundle. She is one of my favorites A. C's characters.She fears nothing and she's always ready to take part.
    I also love the way Battle leads the investigation. He's discrete, sometimes the reader doesn't have a clue of what or why he does something, but he's firm and always right. I really appreciate him.
    Maybe it's a bit strange, but I like Pongo. And I would like that he had a prominent role in the story.
    Maybe, he could had been one of the Seven!
  • Tommy_A_JonesTommy_A_Jones Gloucestershire, United Kingdom
    Bundle id one of my favourite Characters to, I wish there were more Bundle books, now if Sophie Hannah or anyone else wrote a book with her in I think that would be Excellent, I WOULD buy that
  • tudestudes Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
    edited September 2015
    I think she's a nice character. She reminds me Frances from Why they didn't ask Evans? and Tuppence too. Maybe, because she resembles (a little) Tuppence, A.C. didn't write more Bundle books.
    And I don't think Bill is a charismatic character. On the other hand, Tommy is charismatic and funny.
  • Tommy_A_JonesTommy_A_Jones Gloucestershire, United Kingdom
    Bundle, Lady Derwent and Tuppence are really very much alike, if Tuppence wasn't one half of the Beresfords she could have created one woman for all 8 Books but there again Bobby and Jimmy are 2 sides of the same coin but on Television wasn't Pongo and Badger played by the same person?
  • Tommy_A_JonesTommy_A_Jones Gloucestershire, United Kingdom
    I watched The Adaptation with James Warwick, .Cheryl Campbell and Harry Andrews At The Weekend, Do The Crossword Clues actually work as Crossword Clues? I have an idea The 1st doesn't and I couldn't quite hear the answer to Walled in For Good.
  • I am a couple of years late to this discussion but I wanted to weigh in about Seven Dials.  I agree that it is a great novel and consider it to be one of my favorites.  I have read all of the books several times and usually guess the criminal, but not in this case.  I really didn't expect for Battle to be the Seventh Dial.  James Warwick was perfect as Jimmy Thesiger.  He was also in Why Didn't They Ask Evans around the same time.  MissQuin, if you are still around, I am impressed with your comment about Bill and Bundle remaining eternally youthful in our minds, as opposed to the aging of Tommy & Tuppence.  I hadn't thought about that before, but I will be bouncing the idea around a bit!  Thank you!
  • The main plot idea is very clever and I enjoy reading this book because of that.  However, Bill and Bundle get on my nerves in much the same way as Tommy and Tuppence do.  They are too frivolous and distracting from a good story, and I feel that their romance and other inane conversations are unnecessarily detracting from the mystery.
  • Tommy_A_JonesTommy_A_Jones Gloucestershire, United Kingdom

    I think The Book Is Brilliant, I read it recently and watched The Adaptation last Weekend, Excellent.

  • I liked the idea of the Seven Dials group turning out to be a more benevolent force than what we are led to believe.  It's an example of Christie's deceiving the readers and stringing us along in much the same way as Ackroyd, for example.  I was all set to suspect Jimmy Thesiger of being crooked, yet it didn't even occur to me to question the sinister presentation of the Seven Dials group.  Most of her books are easy to guess, but not this one.
  • I have read "The Seven Dials Mystery" two times, but I am sure I will read it again.
    It is one of my favourite Agatha Christie's novels, I love the character of Bundle, that to me represents the perfect mix of strenght, courage and creativity.
    I also love the way the characters evolve and the point of view the story is written, especially when I finally "met" the murderer...  >:)
  • CrookedQuinCrookedQuin California, United States
    I love this book! I love this twist just as much as its predecessor, although this one surprised me a tiny bit more. 
  • I need to read The Seven Dials Mystery again. The last time I read it was back in 2003 when Hurrican Isabel hit my state and I remember I was reading the book at the time the hurricane hit and when the lights remained off for days and days and days. I only read the book once and I remembered loving it but I don't remember who did it and all the little details. It's been 13 years since I last read it. Very soon I need to pull this book out of my box and give it a good read-through again. 
  • Tommy_A_JonesTommy_A_Jones Gloucestershire, United Kingdom
    You won#t be disappointed It is Brilliant
  •  Well, everybody seemed to have left out the most fabulous character of The Seven Dials Mystery,
    Lady Oswald Cootes!
    "Eww! Cooties!" cried the Babosa Bundle Battle, "Your slime touched my nice white chiffon dress."
     Somehow Bundle couldn't imagine why but Lady Cootes was absolutely marvelous and hardly mentioned in the novel. She wondered what had inspired dear old Agatha Christie to come up with such a character and a name such as that. Anyway, years later Bundle played a mystery mansion board game and was amazed how she made a fabulous connection between that sparkling blue pawn and her character.
    Coming soon: the Babosa News Reporter Lady Oswald Cootes.
    "Haha. Take that, Linnet Doyle!" Lady Oswald Cootes scoffed at the news paper and then laughed. 
    ------            -------           --------- 
    Jackie was starting to dart for the door.
    "Stop right there, you, Jackie!" Superintendent Bundle Battle said softly yet menacingly as she held that Babosa named Jackie under her powerful grip. "You're under arrest for the murder of Linnet Doyle..."
    "No!" Jackie screamed, "it wasn't me! She made me do it..."
    "Who made you do what?" Bundle Battle looked at Jackie curiously.
    "She was jealous of Linnet Doyle's pearls..." Jackie cried out hysterically, "it was Lady Oswald Cootes..."
    "Where are the pearls?" Bundle asked.
    "Miss Marple..." Jackie gasped, "Miss Marple took them from me."
    There was something definitely mysterious about the seven dials mystery. A string of seven perfect pink pearls were gone missing...
     Poirot hid behind the shadows of a dusty old space chimney book as Bundle took Jackie away. Only then did Poirot come to realize that there was only one place left to look for the pearls.
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