There's more than petty theft going on in a London youth hostel…
An outbreak of kleptomania at a student hostel was not normally the sort of crime that aroused Hercule Poirot's interest. But when he saw the list of stolen and vandalized items – including a stethoscope, some old flannel trousers, a box of chocolates, a slashed rucksack and a diamond ring found in a bowl of soup – he congratulated the warden, Mrs Hubbard, on a ‘unique and beautiful problem'.
The list made absolutely no sense at all. But, reasoned Poirot, if this was merely a petty thief at work, why was everyone at the hostel so frightened?
`Poirot's return to the happy hunting grounds of detective fiction is something of an event... The thumbnail sketches of the characters are as good as ever and in spite of the over-elaborate nature of the puzzle there is plenty of entertainment.' Times Literary Supplement
`The Christie fan of longest standing, who thinks he knows every one of her tricks, will still be surprised by some of the twists here.' New York Times