This year I have decided to post (at least) one list per month citing some of my favourites. Inspired by Rishi @ Classic Mystery Hunt, who posted a list of his favourite Agatha Christie Reads, I am posting (in alphabetical order) my 12 favourite books written by her.
AND THEN THERE WERE NONE/ TEN LITTLE NIGGERS/ TEN LITTLE INDIANS
Ten people on an island, dying one by one by one...
What can I say about this classic that hasn't been said except that only Agatha Christie could have written this and only Agatha Christie could have ruined this by turning it into that awful play with a most insipid ending.
CARDS ON THE TABLE
Mr. Shaitana (love the name) was a man everybody was a little afraid of. But to be murdered at his own party, in full view of everybody else! It's good Poirot is one of the guests...
This was one of the first Agatha Christies that I read. I also learnt something about Bridge.
DEATH ON THE NILE
Linnet Ridgeway lacked nothing, so why did she have to steal her best friend Jackie's boyfriend Simon Doyle and marry him? Now, Jackie cannot forgive either of them and follows them on their honeymoon cruise. Poor Poirot, eager to relax and travelling on the same ship, finds himself involved in the menage a trois.
The story was first narrated to me by my sister, Nitu didi. Later on we watched the movie too and absolutely enjoyed I.S. Johar's performance as the manager of the ship.
EVIL UNDER THE SUN
Arlena Stuart's body is washed ashore. The actresses' body bears marks of strangulation. It's good that Poirot, taking a well deserved break at Smuggler's island, pays attention to even off-hand remarks.
To me, one of the most ingenious murder plots ever.
HERCULE POIROT'S CHRISTMAS/ A HOLIDAY FOR MURDER/ MURDER FOR CHRISTMAS
It is Christmas time. The Lee family is having a reunion. Only somebody's desire for revenge is far greater than the goodwill and cheer. Hercule Poirot (Poor fellow!), spending the holiday season in the same village, is called for investigation and finds a dysfunctional family.
One of the most under-rated of Christie's books.
THE HOLLOW/ MURDER AFTER HOURS
Invited by Lady Angkatell to her estate, The Hollow, Hercule Poirot is disgusted by the tableau that greets him on his arrival. A handsome man is playing corpse (complete with red paint and all) while a stocky middle-aged woman stands over him waving a gun. As the other statues round these two come to life, Poirot realises, that it is murder which he is witnessing...
A personal favourite. I adore Dr. John Christow.
A Guest House. A Snowstorm. Trapped people with secrets. A Police Inspector who arrives with the news of a murderer on the prowl.
The longest-running play ever. Need I say more?
THE MURDER OF ROGER ACKROYD
Roger Ackroyd is a man with a mission. He is determined to find the blackmailer who forced his beloved to commit suicide. Only before he can read the name of the blackguard, he too is put to death. Hercule Poirot investigates.
When Hercule Poirot announces the name of the murderer, one cannot believe one is reading the line correctly. It just cannot be...
THE MYSTERIOUS MR. QUIN
Twelve stories with just that touch of the supernatural.
Loved the story of the singer and her friend, and the music that can kill.
N OR M?
Espionage, treachery, deceit...it is all there in a boarding house during World War II.
The first Agatha Christie that I ever read was The Secret Adversary featuring Tommy and Tuppence. They are not so young in this but remain irrepressible as ever.
THE SITTAFORD MYSTERY/ MURDER AT HAZELMOOR
Captain Treveylan is declared dead during a seance session. Concerned, his friend Major Burnaby decides to go and check upon him. To his horror, he discovers that his friend is indeed dead. Other worldly visitor or a human hand?
Love the atmosphere during the seance with the thought processes and reactions of the people in that dimly lit, eerie room.
WITNESS FOR THE PROSECUTION
Leonord Vole is put on trial for murdering an elderly widow for her money. And nobody is more eager to put him on the death row than his own wife, Romaine, who appears as a witness for the prosecution.
The short-story is thrilling but the play is absolutely enthralling.
It was hard to select only twelve. There were quite a few I had to leave out. What about you? Do you agree with this selection or did these leave you underwhelmed? Do share your favourite Christies too.
The image at the top is courtesy Sura Nualpradid @freedigitalphotos.net