Monday, March 4, 2019

"She Snatched It from Him, Looked at It and Flung It Out of the Open Window"

"The Case of the Distressed Lady."
(a.k.a. "The Cat and the Chestnut").
By Agatha Christie (1890-1976).
First appearance: Cosmopolitan, August 1932 (as "The Pretty Girl Who Wanted a Ring").

Reprinted in Woman’s Pictorial, October 22, 1932 (as "Faked!").
Collected in Parker Pyne Investigates (1934; U.S. title: Mr. Parker Pyne, Detective).

No media adaptations so far.
Short story (15 pages).
Online at (HERE; EPUB).

     ". . . I have had a long experience in the compilation of statistics. From that experience I can assure you that in eighty-seven percent of cases dishonesty does not pay. Eighty-seven percent. Think of it!"

In his unflagging effort to make his clients happy, as per his advert, Parker Pyne foils a criminal plot, even though it still earns him an unjustified "You oily old brute!"

~ Mr. Parker Pyne:
  An expert at repairing relationships.
~ Daphne St. John:
  A lachrymose lady with a self-inflicted problem.
~ Claude Luttrell and Madeleine de Sara:
  ". . . one of the handsomest specimens of lounge lizard to be found in England" and "the most seductive of vamps."
~ Lady Dortheimer and Sir Reuben:
  Blissfully unaware that they're the designated victims.

- Concerning Parker Pyne, consult Wikipedia (HERE), Hercule Poirot Central (HERE), and Wikipedia again (HERE; WARNING! SPOILERS).
- It has been nearly two and a half years since we last dealt with Agatha Christie at any length, "The Plymouth Express Affair" (HERE) being the featured story then.

The bottom line:


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