Title: Absent in the Spring by Agatha Christie writing as Mary Westmacot
Genre: suspense, literature
Plot summary: (From Library Journal)
Joan Scudamore, housewife and mother of three grown children, is happy, remarkably self-satisfied, and not-at-all introspective. Trapped alone in a foreign rest house she has nothing to do but reconsider her life. Self-analysis is at first unpleasant and then terrifying, as Joan probes deeper and deeper into her memories of interpersonal relationships. At last, mentally stripped to the core, she must reconstruct herself to face the future.
Comments: Agatha Christie said she wrote this book over one long weekend in the middle of World War 2, yet it is so perfectly paced and so complete one suspects she must have been mulling over it for years. One of my favourite books of all time, there is a certain level of schadenfreude in watching a smug person having to face the fact that there is more to life than superficial appearances.