Econstudentlog

Five Little Pigs

“‘What are you going to do?’
‘I am going to visit these five people – and from each one I am going to get his or her own story.’
Superintendent Hale sighed with a deep melancholy.
He said:
‘Man, you’re nuts! None of their stories are going to agree! Don’t you grasp that elementary fact? No two people remember a thing in the same order anyway. And after all this time! Why, you’ll hear five accounts of five separate murders!’
‘That,’ said Poirot, ‘is what I am counting upon. It will be very instructive.'”

I finished the book today. I felt very conflicted about how to rate it, so I decided not to – I should note that the average goodreads rating is 3.88, which is pretty high for a Christie novel. I really liked reading the book, but I felt cheated when I reached the end. Details below the fold, in rot-13 – decrypt that part only if you don’t mind spoilers (to spell out this point, you can translate the gibberish below into English by following the link and copy the text into the box and transform the data. But you should only do so if you don’t mind spoilers).

V tbg nyzbfg rirelguvat evtug. V znqr (jung V oryvrirq gb or) nyy gur evtug vasreraprf. Ohg V jnf jebat, nppbeqvat gb Puevfgvr. V guvax gung’f gur jnl V’yy chg vg, ‘nppbeqvat gb ure’.

V xarj nyzbfg sebz gur ortvaavat jura ure orunivbhe qhevat gur gevny jnf qrfpevorq gung Pnebyvar unq orra cebgrpgvat fbzrbar ryfr, naq vg qvqa’g gnxr znal cntrf gb svther bhg gung gung fbzrbar unq gb or ure fvfgre Natryn. V jnf irel zhpu njner bs gur snpg gung ure vasreraprf zvtug or jebat, naq fb gur snpg gung Pnebyvar gubhtug Natryn unq qbar vg qvqa’g arprffnevyl zrna gung Natryn jnf va snpg thvygl. Gur ceboyrz jnf gung rirelguvat svggrq gung gurbel, naq fb vg tbg uneqre naq uneqre gb oryvrir gung vg jnfa’g npghnyyl nf fvzcyr nf gung – onfvpnyyl rirel puncgre lbh zbirq ba lbh pbhyq cerggl zhpu renfr nabgure cbgragvny fhfcrpg sebz gur yvfg, ohg gur pnfr ntnvafg ure whfg tbg fgebatre naq fgebatre. N ybg bs fhogyr pyhrf jrer cynprq gb fhccbeg gur gurbel bs Natryn nf gur xvyyre, jurernf nyzbfg mreb pyhrf uvagrq ng gur npghny zheqrere; jura V qba’g trg fgbevrf yvxr gurfr evtug, vg’f bsgra qhr gb zvffrq fznyy pyhrf yvxr gur barf juvpu V abgvprq qhevat guvf fgbel. Npghnyyl V tbg fhfcvpvbhf nybat gur jnl orpnhfr rirelguvat svg, naq hfhnyyl rirelguvat qbrfa’g dhvgr svg, juvpu vf bsgra na vaqvpngvba gung Puevfgvr vf cynaavat ba fperjvat jvgu lbh – ohg vg fvzcyl znqr ab frafr vs Natryn jnfa’g gur xvyyre – fur jnf jnl zber cynhfvoyr guna nal bs gur bguref, naq abg whfg va gur ‘fur’f gur bar lbh’er fhccbfrq gb fhfcrpg’-jnl. Gb or senax, vg’f zl vzcerffvba gung va n pbheg bs ynj (ng gung gvzr) Natryn pbhyq rnfvyl unir orra unatrq onfrq ba gur rivqrapr ntnvafg ure, jurernf gurer jbhyq unir orra ab punapr va uryy Ryfn jbhyq rire unir rira orra sbeprq gb fgnaq gevny. Vs lbh jevgr n pevzr fgbel yvxr guvf, gung’f gur xvaq bs guvat gung’yy znxr fbzr crbcyr whfg fnl shpx lbh naq guebj lbhe obbx njnl – qba’g jevgr vg gung jnl. Ng yrnfg yrnir fbzr (abgvprnoyr) vapbafvfgrapvrf va gurer, fbzr guvatf juvpu qb abg dhvgr nqq hc – V pbhyqa’g svaq nal ernfba abg gb oryvrir guvf aneengvir jnf pbeerpg, naq vg jnfa’g rknpgyl nf vs V jnfa’g ybbxvat sbe bgure rkcynangvbaf. Gur ynfg gvzr V’q sryg gung jnl qhevat n Puevfgvr abiry V tbg cerggl zhpu rirelguvat evtug.

Nfvqr sebz gur snpg gung Natryn qvqa’g fgrny cbvfba qhevat ure ohetynel, V unq svtherq bhg gur pbhefr bs riragf nf gurl eryngrq gb Natryn’f zbirzragf qhevat gur zbeavat. V fgvyy guvax ure ivfvg gb Zrerqvgu jnf fvzcyl evqvphybhf gb nqq – n lbhat, natel naq hafgnoyr jbzna oernxf vagb gur fnzr cynpr sebz jurer n ovt nzbhag bs cbvfba jnf sbhaq whfg ubhef yngre gb or zvffvat. Ohg ab, gung jnf whfg n pbvapvqrapr bs fbegf – fur qvqa’g fgrny cbvfba, whfg fbzr unezyrff fghss. Gb chg vagb gur orre gur ivpgvz qenax fubegyl orsber ur qvrq. Fur jnf npghnyyl frra chg fghss vagb gur ynfg tynff bs orre gur ivpgvz rire qenax. V unq cvpxrq hc ba gur snpg gung Nzlnf jnf cebonoyl cbvfbarq orsber fur qenax gur orre Pnebyvar oebhtug jura vg jnf svefg abgvprq ol bar bs gur punenpgref gung Nzlnf ‘fgnttrerq n ovg’, ohg V zvfhaqrefgbbq gur puebabybtl bs jung unq orra tbvat ba qhevat gur zbeavat naq unq nffhzrq gung Natryn unq oebhtug gurz orre orsber Pnebyvar tbg gurer; guvf jnf na rnfl zvfgnxr gb znxr nf cerpvfryl ubj vg unq unccrarq jnfa’g rfgnoyvfurq hagvy irel yngr va gur aneengvir.

Nf sbe bofreingvbaf juvpu fhccbeg gur gurbel gung Ryfn jnf thvygl naq gung qb abg nyfb vzcyl gung fbzrbar ryfr zvtug unir qbar vg (guvf fgngrzrag: “‘Jung qb zbfg crbcyr zrna jura gurl fnl gung? Fb lbhat. Fbzrguvat vaabprag, fbzrguvat nccrnyvat, fbzrguvat urycyrff. Ohg lbhgu vf abg gung! Lbhgu vf pehqr, lbhgu vf fgebat, lbhgu vf cbjreshy – lrf, naq pehry!” ol Cbvebg vf bs gur ynggre xvaq nf vg pnfgf fhfcvpvba hcba obgu Ryfn naq Natryn. Gur ‘pehry’ erznex vf fvzvyne – gur pehrygl pbhyq or obgu gbjneqf Natryn naq Ryfn), cerggl zhpu nyy lbh unir vf gur bofreingvba gung ‘cneg bs ure qvrq’ onpx gura – ohg guvf jnf anghenyyl rkcynvarq ol gur snpg gung nf n lbhat naq vqrnyvfgvp jbzna va ybir fur jnf pehfurq ol gur qrngu bs jung fur oryvrirq gb or ‘gur ybir bs ure yvsr’ (be fbzrguvat nybat gubfr yvarf), na vagrecergngvba juvpu jnf vapvqragnyyl nyfb ng yrnfg cnegvnyyl fhccbegrq ol ure ivbyrag nggnpx ba Pnebyvar oevrsyl nsgre gur zheqre jnf qvfpbirerq. N srj jbeqf bgure crbcyr unq bireurneq bs n pbairefngvba orgjrra Nzlnf naq Pnebyvar vf nyzbfg gur bayl guvat rira vaqvpngvat gung fur zvtug unir unq n zbgvir. Bs pbhefr va ergebfcrpg ure ynpx bs nal cynhfvoyr zbgvir cyhf gur ynpx bs nal vaqvpngvbaf gung fur zvtug unir unq nalguvat gb qb jvgu vg naq gur ynpx bs qvfphffvba nobhg gur snpg gung fur zvtug unir qbar vg qrfcvgr gur snpg gung fur’f npghnyyl bar bs gur svir fhfcrpgf fubhyq unir chg ure ba gbc bs gur yvfg, ohg Puevfgvr jbhyqa’g npghnyyl fvax gung ybj, whfg qenjvat fbzrguvat bhg bs ure fyrrir ng gur ynfg zbzrag yvxr gung, jbhyq fur? Jryy, fur jbhyq – V sryg yvxr vg jnf n pbc-bhg. Ohg V yvxrq ernqvat gur fgbel. Vg jnf n terng fgbel gb ernq, ohg V ernyyl qvqa’g yvxr ubj fur erfbyirq vg, naq gur raqvat npghnyyl fhogenpgrq n ybg sebz gur ernqvat rkcrevrapr.

Bs pbhefr fbzr crbcyr jbhyq cebonoyl fnl vg jnf cerggl boivbhf gung vg jnf Ryfn nyy nybat. Ohg vs vg jnf boivbhf, vg jnf boivbhf sbe ernfbaf juvpu jrer cerfhznoyl abg pybfryl eryngrq gb gur npghny rivqrapr – gur boivbhfarff jbhyq qrevir sebz vafvtugf nobhg Ntngun Puevfgvr; nobhg ubj fur jevgrf pevzr abiryf. Vs V’q gubhtug n yvggyr zber pnershyyl nobhg gur zrgn-pbagrkg V cebonoyl jbhyqa’g unir orra fhecevfrq gbjneqf gur raq, ohg V qba’g yvxr ratntvat va thrffvat tnzrf yvxr gung. V zhpu cersre cybgf jurer vs V znxr gur pbeerpg vasreraprf sebz gur rivqrapr V’yy qenj gur pbeerpg pbapyhfvbaf, ranoyvat zr gb rfgnoyvfu jung npghnyyl unccrarq. Va guvf fgbel V tbg cerggl zhpu rirelguvat evtug, ohg vg fgvyy ghearq bhg gung gur znfxrq zna jvgu gur znpuvartha sbhaq va gur ebbz jvgu gur svir qrnq crbcyr shyy bs ohyyrg ubyrf jnf whfg cnffvat ol gb fryy vpr pernz gb gur xvqf yvivat arkg qbbe.

October 3, 2013 - Posted by | books

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