This novel is narrated by James Sheppard, the local doctor who lives with
his sister in the small village of King's Abbott. The story opens with the death of a Mrs Ferrers, an apparent suicide which shocks and upsets the village. When we first meet the Roger Ackroyd of the title he is alive and well, and has some news to impart about Mrs Ferrars' death - she was being blackmailed. Not long after he makes this revelation he is found dead in his locked study - a knife in his back.
There are a number of suspects, all connected with the victim. Throughout the story suspicion falls on each of them. The most obvious suspect is Ralph Paton, Roger Ackroyd's adopted son. A charming ne'er-do-well, he had quarrelled with his father but had recently been seen in the village after staying away for a number of months. It is Ralph Paton's fiancee who approaches Hercule Poirot to investigate.
Poirot has moved into the house next door to Dr Sheppard. He has retired to the country and given up investigating. However, as he says to Dr Sheppard;
But you can figure to yourself, monsieur, that a man may work towards a certain kind of object, may labour and toil to attain a certain kind leisure and occupation, and then finds that, after all, he yearns for the busy old days, and the old occupations that he thought himself so glad to leave?
So he doesn't take much persuading to take up the case.
I really enjoyed this book, not least because - I guessed the murderer! It was more guesswork than deduction, but I was still quite proud of myself.
I'm working my way through the works of Agatha Christie as part of the Agatha Christie Reading Challenge