Tuesday, 17 September 2019

Top 10 Agatha Christie books

2019 has been the year that I've discovered the genius and ingenuity of Agatha Christie, the undisputed Queen of Crime. I really don't know why it took me so long to actually pick up one of her books because I love whodunits and murder mysteries. Every year I watch the BBC TV Agatha Christie adaptations and last Christmas I also read 'The Seven Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle' by Stuart Turton which was AMAZING. In the notes at the end of the book, he said that he had always wanted to write a mystery as clever as Agatha Christie, so I think that sparked my desire to read the original novels. I started with 'And Then There Were None' which I absolutely loved and then decided to make a list of all of Christie's books which I faithfully hunted for in the library every week (with the help of my Dad!)

I've had a wonderful time binging on all of her stories, as well as watching as many TV adaptations as I could and visiting some of the famous Agatha Christie literary landmarks. The books have given me hours and hours of pleasure and in the future I'm looking forward to rereading them all over again.

I thought I would compile a list of my top ten Agatha Christie books but it's been so hard to narrow it down. I keep on changing my mind! I'm sure everyone has a different selection of favourites but after lots and lots of thought, I'm going to share mine. This is in no particular order as that would have been impossible to do!

Poirot's very first case and one featuring a wealthy heiress, a murder and a locked room mystery. Hercule Poirot is at his detecting best in this ingenious story which is an absolute classic.  
 
https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/0007527497/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&tag=adrofbo-21&camp=1634&creative=6738&linkCode=as2&creativeASIN=0007527497&linkId=a49c185a0a39eca26c257ec471eeb36f
 
Roger Ackroyd is murdered in his locked study. Who could have done it? Wickedly clever! About two-thirds through I had a crazy suspicion about who the murderer was and it turned out to be right...which believe me, surprised me too as I never normally guess right. Even then, the ending was still gasp-worthy and audacious, making me want to go right back to the beginning to read the book again.
 
https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/0007527527/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&tag=adrofbo-21&camp=1634&creative=6738&linkCode=as2&creativeASIN=0007527527&linkId=ad0a9440ac894827800a86dbe06e8ec4
 
Another Poirot mystery featuring a family in a small English village where anyone could be the murderer. I was completely wrong-footed the whole way through and the story kept me on the edge of my seat. 
 
https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/0008129541/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&tag=adrofbo-21&camp=1634&creative=6738&linkCode=as2&creativeASIN=0008129541&linkId=10c6fd6259b64f858e2a3c58fb9ca15c
 
Absolutely fantastic! A totally engrossing read with twists and turns at every corner. Definitely one of the best Agatha Christie books I’ve read. Several deaths, a murder or two to investigate and a whole host of intriguing suspects (including one that I really didn't want to be guilty!)
 
https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B0046A9N2Q/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&tag=adrofbo-21&camp=1634&creative=6738&linkCode=as2&creativeASIN=B0046A9N2Q&linkId=28a920fe4684868c60e5f86ad93108d8
 
The patriarch of an affluent family is poisoned and found dead. Suspicion falls on his various family members, including his much younger widow, any one of whom could have wanted him dead. Agatha Christie said that this was one of her favourite books to write and it's not hard to see why.  
 
https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/0008196346/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&tag=adrofbo-21&camp=1634&creative=6738&linkCode=as2&creativeASIN=0008196346&linkId=c641024f97e76f71bcaef50af4589185
 
Poirot's very last case where he returns to Styles with Hastings by his side. Even though Poirot is at the end of his illustrious career, he still has his 'grey cells' working and he's still cleverer than any other character I've ever come across. The great detective remains great until the very end.
 
https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/0007527608/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&tag=adrofbo-21&camp=1634&creative=6738&linkCode=as2&creativeASIN=0007527608&linkId=c87fca69e7f73c72e9e990647d0e23ab
 
When I started reading this book, I was surprised about the change of direction that Christie seemed to have gone in. A happy marriage between a wealthy heiress and the man she meets didn't seem like it would lead to death and destruction. However, the twist when it comes is diabolical. You have to just keep on reading.
 
https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/0008196397/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&tag=adrofbo-21&camp=1634&creative=6738&linkCode=as2&creativeASIN=0008196397&linkId=a79c1354fddbd7eabe84ecb75172b699
 
The only Miss Marple mystery to make my top 10 but it's a good un'. When a murder is announced in the newspaper of the small town Chipping Cleghorn, it's handy that Miss Marple is around to help investigate. I made a guess early on about who I thought the murderer was and then was proven completely wrong when they turned up dead. Hmmm. I decided I didn't have a clue who was responsible for the crimes and so made an outlandish, wild guess and it turned out to be right! 
 
https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/0008196559/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&tag=adrofbo-21&camp=1634&creative=6738&linkCode=as2&creativeASIN=0008196559&linkId=479ff2f8cbb985dd61d82f2ad3ed2c4f
 
All the key ingredients are there in this Poirot murder mystery aboard the famous Orient Express. After a man is found murdered on the train, the question is which of the passengers is the guilty party? Everyone seems to have an alibi and someone seems to want to pin the crime on Poirot himself. I loved everything about this book, including the fact that I didn't have a clue how the story was going to conclude.   
 
https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/0008226679/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&tag=adrofbo-21&camp=1634&creative=6738&linkCode=as2&creativeASIN=0008226679&linkId=fd50aa736b9e9a1cc44b6e780f6691a9
 
A small island off the coast of Devon and ten strangers who end up stranded together with a murderer on the loose. This is classic Agatha Christie from start to finish. You won't be able to put it down.
 
https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/0008123209/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&tag=adrofbo-21&camp=1634&creative=6738&linkCode=as2&creativeASIN=0008123209&linkId=21990d87b239952e49245805ab402b73
 
So many wonderful books from one author! I love the fact that Agatha Christie wrote such a colossal number of novels and short stories because it's meant that I've been able to binge on and devour her entire back catalogue. I need recommendations now for other books in a similar style. I've read 'The Hunting Party' by Lucy Foley and 'The Seven Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle' by Stuart Turton but if anyone knows of clever whodunits by other authors then please let me know.
 
Have you read any Agatha Christie books? If so, what are your favourites?
 

2 comments:

  1. I have not read a single Agatha Christie book but I did saw some of the movies and enjoyed them. I think now I should try to read one of them, I'm going to use your top ten list as suggestions to start.

    Have a lovely day

    ReplyDelete
  2. I am very late to the Agatha Christie fan club too and wish that I'd started reading her books years ago. They are definitely worth the wait though!

    ReplyDelete

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