Actress Sophie Ward as Molly Kendal

In the novel A Caribbean Mystery, Molly Kendal is the pretty young wife of Tim. They have started a hotel on a Caribbean island. She eventually believes she has fallen mentally ill and confides it to Evelyn, although her symptoms are the result of being poisoned.

Molly is described as an "ingenuous blonde of twenty odd, always apparently in good spirits". Her hair is a "natural golden blonde", and she has a "wide generous mouth" that laughs easily.

When Miss Marple first arrived at the Golden Palm Hotel, Molly greeted her warmly, and did everything she coud to make Miss Marple comfortable.

Molly reminds Miss Marple of a conductress on the Market Basing bus, who helped passengers in, and never rang the bus on until she was sure they had sat down safely.

Molly is able to adapt her manner to suit different guests, laughing and flirting with the elderly men, and complimenting the younger women on their clothes. She usually leaves the elderly ladies to her husband, believing that they prefer a man.

When Major Palgrave is found dead, Molly is worried about how this will affect the hotel's business. She is worried that people might suggest that his death was something to do with the food served at the hotel, and that they might leave, or advise their friends against staying at the hotel.

Molly's husband, Tim, tells Miss Marple that Molly has been experiencing nightmares, and dreams of someone or something chasing her, or watching her and spying on her.

Molly herself confides in Evelyn Hillingdon, saying that she thinks there is something wrong with her, and that she feels terribly frightened. She mentions feeling like someone is watching her all the time, and that somebody hates her. She also says that she has blackouts, times when she cannot remember what has happened or what she did. She says that sometimes, at the end of that time, she is wearing different clothes, or has done things, or talked to people, without remembering that she has done so.

Evelyn advises Molly to see a doctor, but Molly says that she would not go near a doctor. She says that a doctor might not reassure her, and might instead tell her that something is wrong with her.

Molly also mentions her mother, with whom she has never gotten along, and her sisters, who are married. She says that she does not want them to come and be with her, as she does not want anyone except Tim.

Miss Marple learns from Miss Prescott that Molly had taken up with an unsuitable man, and had not told her family about it, although they heard from an outsider. Molly's mother asked her to bring the man home to meet her family properly, but she refused, saying that it was humiliating for him. They forbade her to see him. However, after that, she met Tim Kendal, and the other man faded out of the picture.

Molly later discovers the dead body of Victoria Johnson, while she is walking along the beach path. She is very distressed, and says that she does not know what happened, and cannot remember.

Molly is later taken ill, having taken an overdose of sleeping pills. Dr Graham attends to her, and is of the opinion that she probably did not take enough to kill her, and will be alright in a few days. Molly then awakens, and says that she took the overdose because she was afraid.

Miss Marple later discovers a book on nervous diseases hidden under the mattress of Molly's bed. It comes open naturally at a place describing persecution mania, schizophrenia, and other related conditions.

Molly is later found missing in the night, and various guests and staff of the hotel go looking for her. A body is found in the creek, and it is at first believed to be her. However, it is revealed that it is Lucky Dyson.

Molly returns to her bungalow, where Tim finds her. Molly tells him that she did not kill Lucky, saying that she would remember if she did. Tim gives her a glass of water to drink. However, as he approaches the glass to her lips, Miss Marple orders Jackson to take the glass away.

It is revealed that Tim had planted the book on nervous disorders where Molly would find it, and had drugged her face cream, to make her question her own sanity. Miss Marple also surmises that the unsuitable man Molly had been involved with had been Tim himself. He had refused to meet Molly's family, and had later turned up primed with the names of various old friends of the family, so that they welcomed him.

At the end of the novel, it is revealed that Molly has decided to continue running the hotel, with the help of one of Mr Rafiel's nominees.

Portrayals

In the 1983 Warner Bros adaptation of A Caribbean Mystery, Molly is portrayed by Cassie Yates.

In the BBC 1989 adaptation of A Caribbean Mystery, Molly is portrayed by Sophie Ward.

In the 2013 ITV adaptation of A Caribbean Mystery, Molly is portrayed by Charity Wakefield. The surname in this adaptation is spelled Kendall. Her parents used to run the Golden Palms Hotel. Molly's mother committed suicide and she was sent to England where she met an "unsuitable man" who was then replaced by Tim Kendal who was welcomed by her father (Miss Marple later surmised that Tim was the "unsuitable man" who then turned up again in a second guise). Many rumours and gossip circulated about Molly's backstory among the hotel guests. She had always been unstable--Esther Walters thought this ran in her family. Molly had also known the barman Errol from young and had been close, "too close". Greg Dyson also told tim Kendal that Molly was very flirtatious and unstable, in the early days when Greg was staying at the hotel, which was then run by Molly's parents. In this adaptation, there were two motives for Tim Kendal's attempt to kill Molly. In the first place, Esther Walters who stood to inherit from Rafiel's will. In addition, Rafiel had been trying to buy over the hotel because the land contained valuable deposits of guano. Tim Kendal wanted the money but knew that Molly would not sell the hotel for sentimental reasons. In an unusual twist, Molly pairs up with Canon Prescott at the end of the show.

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