Thursday, May 2, 2013

"Sleeping Murder" and Childhood Memories

I'm rereading "Sleeping Murder" by Agatha Christie. I think that's one of my favorite Christie novels. It's an unusual premise, and not so very predictable as a result. Plus it's Miss Marple and I adore Miss Marple.

I do find sections of it rather creepy though. I thought it wouldn't be a problem the second time through, but there were still these moments when I had to double check that my door was locked! Not in a 'oh I'm going to get murdered' way... more just that omnious hair-prickling 'eeep!' way that you can't quite put your finger on.

I think it has to do with the fact that the story hinges on forgotten memories. It's clever and a bit freaky. I mean, think about the scope of your life and what you remember and what you've forgotten. I remember very little of the house I lived in before I was three. My bedroom, the kitchen, the living room, the basement... but it's hard to know how many are my actual memories and what have been reconstructed by photos. I guess both. I can't remember my parent's room or the bathroom at all. It's weird. These holes...

So anyhow, Gwenda's eerie familiarity with the house is haunting and compelling for me. And it's something to ponder on... the scope of a child's mind and how much is forgotten. I think that's sad, in a way, how much of our lives we forget. Less now, I think, then in the past, due to the internet and photography and videography... but we cannot possibly remember every moment we have lived.

I was going to say I wish that there was more I remembered, but actually - other than my paternal grandmother - I feel that I've retained the vital memories. In other words, I'm pretty sure there's no haunting murder in the files of my mind...

1 comment:

Victoria said...

I love Agatha Christie, and I've never read that one! I'll have to pick it up - it sounds deliciously creepy.

I've heard that when you remember something over and over again, it gradually changes till it's quite different from the actual events. I think that's so sad - it would mean your favorite memories are the ones least closest to the truth.

Are you ever in the middle of something and you feel like it's happened before? That's happened to me - someone says something and I think "wait, I've heard this before" and then I remember what happens after that, and that very thing happens. *shudders* It's soooo creepy.