Reuben Astwell is an evil man. He is hated by his nephew, his wife, his employees, his brother, his female assistant, and Poirot himself after he meets the man. So when Astwell is found dead shortly after Poirot visits to have dinner with Astwell and view the man's collection of Belgian miniatures, Poirot has many suspects from which to choose. Written by
The magazine read by Lady Astwell, "The Queen", was originally a society magazine first published in 1861. See more »
Hans Meyer [letter]:
My dear Horace; We were all disappointed not to see you at our conference in Berlin. England is in danger of becoming isolated, you know. Many interesting developments were discussed, in particular Sir Reuben Astwell's new Astoprene compound. It's rumoured that Farben's over here will manufacture it under license. But then, you know what gossips scientists can be.
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Sir Reuben Astwell is the CEO of Astwell Chenicals and a rather unscrupulous and obnoxious man. Astwell Chemicals has just developed a synthetic substitute for rubber, an incredibly useful innovation and surely something that will be useful if Britain goes to war with Germany. However, Sir Reuben, despite seeing the possibility of a war with Germany, makes a deal with to sell the formula to a German company. That night he is found dead, murdered. Luckily Poirot is in the vicinity and he is soon on the case.
Quite intriguing, with the murderer not being obvious. Some good twists, turns and red herrings. Some good sub-plots too: Miss Lemon and her hypnosis, Hastings and his golf.
A good whodunnit.
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