N or M? by Agatha Christie
Paperback, 224 pages
Middle-aged Tommy and Tuppence Beresford, too old to fight and too young to knit, are dismayed to find out that the British government of World War II has little interest in their detecting and spy-catching abilities. Then, almost incidentally, they are asked to spot a traitor, believed to be living at a rural guesthouse. But the place is full of harmless eccentrics: elderly ladies, retired military men, a hypochondriac and his colorless wife, a young mother, and a German refugee. The Beresfords invent personalities and elaborate traps, identify the impostor, and prevent an invasion.
N or M? is my least favorite Agatha Christie novel so far. Halfway thought the novel I realized that absolutely nothing of any importance has happened yet. I pushed on and found that the mystery came together nicely in the end. I'm glad I stuck with the book but half a novel of set-up before any action is pretty extreme. The book had it's rare moments of surprise, but not enough for me to ever recommend it to others.