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A Pocket Full of Rye

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Madilyn Rhoney

on 14 May 2015

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Transcript of A Pocket Full of Rye

About the Author
Characters
Man vs. Man
This is the main conflict in this book because multiple murders have taken place and each man is turning against the other trying to figure out who did it.
Man vs. Self
Inspector Neele faces this conflict because he has to solve the murder and it gets frustrating at times, but he has to stick with it to solve the crime.
Conflicts
Setting
Where?
The story takes place in England, near London.
Most of the time they are at Yewtree Lodge, Mr. Fortescue’s mansion, but sometimes they are at his office or out in the city.
When?
No specific dates are given, but the book seems to have older ways of speaking so it was probably written in present time. The book was first written in 1954, so that would explain why there is older language.
Some examples are…
They call everyone by Mr. and Mrs.
No technology
Had to hand-wash clothes and hang them out to dry
Wrote letters to communicate



Summary
The story opens with the death of Rex Fortescue, a wealthy businessman who was poisoned at breakfast from taxine, a poison derived from a yew tree. Dectective Inspector Neele found an unexplained handful of rye in Mr. Fortescue’s coat pocket. Not long after, the housemaid Glady’s Martin was strangled, and Adele Fortescue, Mr. Fortescue’s young and beautiful second wife, was found dead from poison in her afternoon tea. The police are bewildered and can find many motives as to why someone would kill Mr. Fortescue, but none of them seem to fit the three murders. The Fortescue family lives in a mansion named Yewtree Lodge, including Mr. Fortescue’s two children, a spouse,a crazy mother in law, and the whole staff. Then out of nowhere Lance Fortescue, Mr. Fortescue’s other son comes back from living in Australia with his new wife and things become even more suspicious. Miss Marple comes to help solve the death of Gladys Martin, who used to work for her. She has some theories that seem almost impossible, but could they be true? Everyone in the house becomes a suspect and now it is up to Inspector Neele and Miss Marple to find out who is the guilty one.

A Pocket Full of Rye
By: Agatha Christie

Quick Facts
Genre
Fictional Mystery
Published originally in 1953, first paperback book was published in 2011
Part of the Miss Marple Mysteries Series
There are a total of 13 books in the series

Agatha Christie is the worlds best-selling novelist outsold only by The Bible and Shakespeare.
She is the author of 80 crime novels and short story collections, 19 plays, 2 memoirs, and 6 novels written under the pen name Mary Westmacott
Many of her novels and short stories were made into plays, films, and television series.
The Mousetrap was her most famous play of all times. It came out in 1952 and is the longest-running play in history.
In 1971 she achieved one of Britain’s highest honors when she was made a Dame of the British Empire.
Agatha Christie died in 1976 at the age of 85.

Mr. Rex Fortescue
Father of the Household
Businessman
Overweight
Rude and overbearing
Cheating
Grumpy
Unliked
Died first
Mrs. Fortescue

Young, about 30 years younger than Mr. Fortescue
Pretty
Spoiled
Died while drinking tea at her afternoon tea
Motive for Murder: was having an affair and would have received her dead husbands inheritance
Mr. Percival Fortescue
Mr. Fortescue's son
"favorite son"
very protected and followed the rules
a lot like his father
prim, sly, and cunning
clever
economy is his passion
Strongly disliked his younger brother Lance
Motive for murder: Percival would inherit the company
Mrs. Jennifer Fortescue
meek
stupid
She was a hospital nurse before her marriage
She nursed Percival through pneumonia to a romantic conclusion
Mr. Lance Fortescue
Mr. Fortescue's other son
Moved to Austria after a fight with his brother and father
Hasn't seen the family in years
Recently married
Rebellious son
Mr. Fortescue didn't consider him his son
Motive for Murder: to get revenge on his father
Elaine Fortescue
Mr. Fortescue's daughter
'one of those great schoolgirls who never grew up'
not particularly attractive
fell in love with a schoolmaster but her father disapproved
Motive for murder: She could marry her love freely now
Inspector Neele
Very good at solving crimes
clever
determined
Main Character
smart soldierly appearance
crisp brown hair growing back from a rather low forehead
Mary Dove
small demure figure
dark slicked-back hair
satisfied with her appearance
a very faint smile on her lips
head housekeeper
confident
judgemental of all the others
seems to be hiding something
Other Characters
Mr. and Mrs. Crump
kitchen staff
Miss Ramsbottom
crazy aunt who lives in the attic
Gladys Martin
Strangled for knowing something about the murderer
housemaid
Miss Marple
plays a major role in solving the mystery
Miss Griffith
Miss Somers
Miss Grosvenor
Themes
1. You can plan every detail out over and over, but things will never go according to plan.

2. It is better to tell the truth in the beginning before it's to late.

3. Trust your instincts.
Important Quotes
Personal Quote
"Struck down at last in his arrogance and sinful pride. Well, it had to come."
This was said by Miss Ramsbottom when she first found out Rex was dead.
pg. 61
I love this quote because no one liked Mr. Fortescue, but when they found out he had died they all pretended to be sad and feel bad. Miss Ramsbottom just says it like it is and speaks for everyone who is to afraid to state the truth.
Conflict Quote
" I didn't do it", she said. "But I suppose everybody will tell you that!"
pg. 31
This seemed to be said by everyone in the book at some point in the story. To me it proves that everyone tried to put the blame on others and no one in the family had any trust in each other.
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Full transcript