I enjoy reading a good mystery, and Agatha Christie is one of my favourite authors. I have read most of her books and enjoy her main characters, including Hercule Poirot, Tommy and Tuppence, the mysterious Mr, Quin, and of course, Miss Jane Marple. Miss Marple is my kind of hero. In one of her stories she says,
"We're all very ordinary in St. Mary Mead, but ordinary people can sometimes do the most astonishing things."
Her observations of human nature, and her quiet inquiries lead her to solving the most extraordinary cases. She loves her garden and uses her powerful binoculars to observe birds, as well as for other purposes. Her detection methods do not include collecting physical clues, but as she sits and knits, she uses her mind to sort out behaviour clues. Agatha Christie allows her hero to age, and the reader finds her becoming increasingly frail, prone to falls, and dismissed by people in the village as a fussy old spinster. But her deductive mind does not disappoint us.
I believe Agatha Christie could have been the most brilliant criminal. Her characters mirror her own intelligence and ingenuity. Agatha Christie says of Miss Marple, "Though a cheerful person, she always expected the worst of everyone and everything, and is, with almost frightening accuracy, usually proved right."Miss Marple says, "It's very dangerous to believe people. I haven't for years."
I don't want to be quite as cynical about people, but we do tend to hide our less desirable character traits and behaviours from others. As I observe people in a crowded waiting room, I can be sure someone else is watching and coming to their own conclusions about me.