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Comparative Study of Murder Mysteries Agatha Christie and Sheila Radley The novels Death of a Maiden and Appointment with Death written by Sheila Radley and Agatha Christie are murder mysteries describing a betrayal of trust While both are similar in this way it is the differences between the two novels that make the similarities remarkable By comparing the victims the killers and the investigators the differences in the novels are revealed The victims in the novels Mary Gadge and Mrs Boynton were murdered in very different ways Mary Gedge was drowned in Ashthorpe river in her home town of Godbold The girl lay face-down arms outstretched rushes woven among her fingers She wore a long dress of cotton sprigged with tiny flowers and the hem of the dress swung and rippled round her legs with the motion of the water Gathered flowers--enamelled buttercups mauve ladys smock--floated about her body and clung to her hair and her dress wherever they touched It looked a quiet way to die pg 6 Radley Mrs Boynton on the other hand died a quiet and unexplainable death Miss Gedge was a young woman in the prime of her life loved by everyone while Mrs Boynton was a grouchy old shrew whom even her family couldnt stand It was because of the differences between the victims that the police inspectors investigations were completely different In the case of Miss Gedge inspectors Tait and Quantrill could not find any substantial evidence pointing towards a motive Tait compared the fate of the Page 2 young woman to that of Shakespearess Ophelia Ophelia committed suicide in the play Hamlet reflecting the inspectors original view of Mary Gedges death In the case of Mrs Boynton on the other hand inspector Poirot had numerous suspects with convincing motives The motives of the killers were a lot alike In some ways they can be both viewed as mercy killings
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