Pubblicato in Italia con il titolo Le fatiche di Hercule. Poirot accetta dodici casi prima di ritirarsi definitivamente. Dodici casi che ricordano le sfide degli antichi. Riuscirà Poirot a superarle?
The Belgian Detective Hercule Poirot has dinner with an old friend and the talk turns to his name and the Hercules from the classics, which inspire Poirot to accept twelve last cases before his retirement that will be selected with reference to the twelve labours of the ancient Hercules. In the first case, what appears to be a simple kidnapping of dogs from wealthy families turns out to be a well-thought operation. In the second labour, Poirot agrees to prove a man’s innocence in his wife’s death against the village gossip. It follows the story of a young man in love who asks Poirot to find a woman who has disappeared; the search of a dangerous gangster while Poirot is on holiday in Switzerland; a political scandal that could overturn the government; the blackmail of a man on holiday in Herzoslovakia; a family madness that could destroy a young couple’s happiness; a wild party that reveals a drug market; the search of stolen art that is linked to the disappearance of a young girl in France; a religious cult prying on women; the search of an antique gold goblet that turns international. And, finally, in the last labour, Poirot goes to Hell (not literally) to capture Cerberus.
This is a clever collection of short stories, each case complex and intriguing, but Poirot never backs down, not even in front of the impossible. Like the Greek hero, he faces the challenge and comes out a winner!