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Spider's Web
Read By Hugh Fraser

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Spider's Web

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Agatha Christie's Spider's Web
Adapted as a novel by Charles Osborne
Read by Hugh Fraser
ISBN: 1-57270-204-4
The Audio Partners Publishing Corp.
A Complete and Unabridged Audio Recording - 3 cassettes. (This recording is also available on CD.)
Genre: Mystery

Reviewed by Rochelle Caviness - June 19, 2001

Clarissa is a teller of tale tales and she enjoys a good game of what-if. For instance, she ponders the question of what would happen if she were to find a dead body in the house. A question that moves from theory to reality when she does, indeed, find a corpse. Clarissa has a problem. Not only does she have a corpse on her hands, but she expects her husband, a member of the Foreign Office, to show up any minute with the Prime Minister and a Russian politician mysteriously labeled "Mr. Jones." It would simply not do to have a corpse intruding on their secret meeting. So, being Clarissa and having previously pondered a similar scenario, she knows what to do. She quickly hoodwinks three friends into helping her. Together they not only try to hide the body, but they also help her try to decipher who killed him, and why.

With panache, Clarissa orchestrates the whole affair, one which is quickly complicated when the police arrive. The problem is, Clarissa is so well-known for telling-tales, even her friends do not know if they can believe everything that she is telling them. Unfortunately for Clarissa, she must never have heard the tale of the "Boy who Cried Wolf!" Spider's Web takes place in a quiet country house. A house into which Clarissa recently took up residence, along with her husband Henry, and her stepdaughter, Piper. Their new home used to belong to an antique dealer, and it came furnished with some wonderful antiques, a secret passage, and a gardener - a large women in Wellingtons by the name of Mrs. Peak.

This audio recording of Agatha Christie's play, Spider's Web, represents a complete reading of Charles Osborne's adaptation of Christie's play into a novel. This recording is smashingly read by Hugh Fraser. Fraser is a well know actor. One of his many roles is that of Captain Hastings, Poirot's side-kick in the PBS-TV Mystery! series that has adapted many of Christie's stories for the television. Fraser's voice well fits the setting of this story, and he does a wonderful job of imbuing each character with a different voice. I especially loved him as Mrs. Peak, he gave her just the right deep throatiness that you would expect from a large, masculinesk, horsey type women. I was in stitches, picturing Fraser, in drag of course, playing the role of Peak.

Spider's Web is pure Christie. The dialogue is crisp, the characters believable, the story is fast paced, and the mystery so tricky that is it virtually impossible to figure out 'who done-it' until she actually tells you! The story is also enlivened by Christie's humor, satirical moralizing, and her own self promotion - if you listen carefully you'll catch a reference to The Ten Little Indians, another play by Christie. All in all, this is a wonderful mystery that is spiced with just the right amount of drollness to make it delectable.

Click Here for a complete list of all the books written by Agatha Christie.

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