69 pages 2 hours read

Agatha Christie

The Mousetrap

Fiction | Play | Adult | Published in 1950

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Character Analysis

Mollie Ralston / Mollie Waring

Mollie was born with the last name Waring but took the last name Ralston when she married Giles. She is in her twenties “with an ingenuous air” (2) and co-runs Monkswell Manor with her husband. Before meeting Giles, Mollie was the schoolteacher of the Corrigan children. One the children wrote her a letter about the conditions at their foster home, Longridge Farm. However, she did not receive because she was ill and, as a result, did not receive it in time to save one child from death and the others from abuse.

The fact that Mollie hides her past creates some red herrings. When she temporarily suspects Giles, her suppression of information causes her to “chang[e] her manner” and smile in a “dreamy fashion” (48). This is just one example of several physical cues in the play that cast suspicion on Mollie. These red herrings might keep the audience from guessing Trotter is the murderer.

Several characters mention Mollie is beautiful, and she winds up in interpersonal triangles with Christopher and Giles, as well as Paravicini and Giles. For instance, Paravicini “takes Mollie’s right arm” (51) and Giles takes “Mollie’s left arm” (52) in a literal physical triangulation between men and Mollie.

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