The amazing Agatha Christie

James Cudney of This is my truth now blog is hosting an Agatha Christie Readathon. You can find out all about this here:

James’ post reminded me of how much I enjoyed reading Agatha Christie books as a teenager. I read every single Poirot and Miss Marple books she wrote and Wikipedia tells me there were 66 books in these two series. My favourite of these two characters is Hercule Poirot, the short Belgium detective who she describes as having a keen sense of order and a head full of little grey cells. It is interesting that it is generally believed that Agatha Christie came to despise this character of hers. Her scathing descriptions of Hercule Poirot as being a ridiculous little man whose only saving grace is his ability to solve crimes is thought to be testimony to this belief. I always found Monsieur Poirot to be very entertaining and the stories he featured in were generally better, in my opinion, than those featuring Miss Marple.

My favourite Agatha Christie book is And Then There Were None. I thought this story was terrifically clever and I loved some of the descriptions of the characters in the book and their reactions to the various murders. I saw this book as a play when I was in high school and it ingrained itself into my mind when I saw my school fellows acting out the characters that eventually fell to the murderer.

And Then There Were None

The blurb of this book is as follows: “Ten strangers, apparently with little in common, are lured to an island mansion off the coast of Devon by the mysterious U.N.Owen. Over dinner, a record begins to play, and the voice of an unseen host accuses each person of hiding a guilty secret. That evening, former reckless driver Tony Marston is found murdered by a deadly dose of cyanide.

The tension escalates as the survivors realise the killer is not only among them but is preparing to strike again… and again…”

It is intriguing to me that Agatha Christie’s books are still so popular despite the fact that they are fairly old fashioned and conservative. They now have status as classics with makes me smile as we were not encouraged to read them when I was at school as my English teacher said they were trashy and badly written. Well, I suppose they are not written Tolkien style but they have good stories and Agatha Christie is the best selling author of all time according to the Guinness book of world records.

To me, one of the most interesting facts about Agatha Christie is that she did not plan her books. She did not know who the murderer would be when she started writing her books but let them develop as she went along.

Did you know that Agatha Christie also wrote the world’s longest running play, The Mousetrap. I am hoping to see it when we visit the UK later this year.

A few more of my favourite books by Agatha Christie:

Image result for The Murder of Roger AckroydImage result for Agatha Christie booksImage result for Agatha Christie books

43 thoughts on “The amazing Agatha Christie

  1. Hi Robbie, Never read Christie I am ashamed to say but love the TV Marple films with Geraldine Mckeown and Later Julia Mckenzie. They capture the late 50s beautifully. Never realised Then There were None (Christie’s original title was a bit rum… How times change thanks god!) was a Poirot, but again I love the way he was played by David Suchet: so precise and meticulous. You really get the sense of a man struggling with this computer like brain with a compulsion to order the world . PX

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    1. I am quite surprised you haven’t read at least one Agatha Christie, Paul. There ares so many and I think they do hold an interest factor because she is so well known. I realised that I made a mistake. And then there were none wasn’t a Poirot. I meant to write Agatha Christie; I think my brain is a bit addled from overwork. I have corrected it. This is a very clever book.

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  2. I remember seeing the movie version of And Then There Were None when I was a kid. I think the title was changed to The Ten Little Indians for film. Loved the story! I actually bought and read the paperback just last year. It was interesting to note the difference in the style of writing for that time.

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  3. Robbie,
    her stories are classics, and rather than see a film version, it makes me want to enjoy her writing, and the slow unveiling of the person who committed the crime…that said, there is a 1973 film called “The Last Of Sheila” that is similar in a way to”And Then…” A Film Producer invites a Writer, Director, Agent, Manager, Starlet and one spouse to a yacht excursion on the French Riviera…but there is something sinister afoot…it was written by the star of “Psycho”, Anthony Perkins, and the legendary songwriter Stephen Sondheim! It’s on DVD and worth a look!

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  4. Hi Robbie, I enjoyed reading your experiences and thoughts about Agatha Christie’s books. I read everyone I thought but the count you gave makes me wonder.
    I loved her style of writing, slowly we guess, get it wrong, take a new path. …My favourite is also Hercule Poirot, he is clever in his quiet way and a charmer. Miss Marple I like too as a typical village observer. Knows everyone and sees what goes on.

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      1. And Then There Were None is one of my favorites, just because it gets so crazy towards the end as they run out of suspects. There’s a pretty good BBC adaptation with Charles Dance (Tywin Lannister) as Justice Wargrave.

        Roger Ackroyd will always be my favorite though because she completely got me with the ending. It almost seemed unfair, but after a reread, I realized she actually did give you a lot of clues.

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    1. They are actually very clever, Tandy. We are going to Faversham to see the relatives and drop off my Mom and then we are going to Scotland and back via York to visit the Bronte Museum and Durham university.


  5. My favorite is Hercule Poirot. And Then There Were None and Murder on Orient Express sound familiar. I love mystery, but I think I watch mystery films more than reading books because I have too many books on my reading list. Wonderful review, Robbie. Thank you!

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  6. Robbie, you’ll love the Mousetrap! I saw it a few years ago and as an Agatha Christie fan this had been my dream for ages! Her books were part of my teenage years too and I still have a big collection of her books in my special bookcase! It’s not quite the same rereading them again now but still enjoy the television shows and films of her books.

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