The killer was the jealous husband. Or was it the blackmailing doctor? Reading an Agatha Christie novel will leave you guessing til the last chapter. And since I’ve been on a murder mystery ala Agatha Christie binge lately, I’ve become a bit of an expert of the genre. I’m not kidding I’ve read 8 Christie novels in the last two weeks! They are so addictive and fun. I love the twists at the end and how you have no real idea who the killer is. Also, these books make me want to live in the English countryside asap. Anyway, here are a few stand out Christie books that I’ve read and have some thoughts about.
I’ve dipped my toe in before with Agatha Christie, but it was the Murder at the Vicarage that made me fall in love with the genre. This is the “first” Miss Marple case. Lovable old Miss Marple with her quick wit and detective like observation. A murder occurs in her village and of course the police are helpless at catching the culprit. This book had me stumped! I could not figure out who the killer was. This book also led me to the discovery that Agatha Christie books can be funny as well! I really enjoyed the side characters in the novel. 10/10 would recommend.
The next book on the list is a stand alone novel, Crooked House. This means that it’s not part of a series like Miss Marple or Poirot. This case involves a wealthy family whose patriarch is murdered. Everyone has a motive ( which is common in a Christie novel) and the killer even strikes again! I really liked this story and the tangled tale of wealth, greed and what is true evil. I should mention that I listened to the audiobook and the performance of the narrator was top notch! And they all lived together in a little crooked house.
You can’t list Agatha Christie novels and not include Hercule Poirot! The famous Belgian detective solves the case in my next pick, The ABC Murders. The format to this story is different since it deals with a serial killer. Poirot is racing against the clock to stop the murderer. I like Poirot as the protagonist in this case and how he eventually solves the crime (no spoilers though). Probably not my favorite Hercule Poirot story but I thought it was enjoyable.
The Mysterious Affair at Styles on the other hand is a really good Hercule Poirot novel. A wealthy old lady is poisoned and all fingers point to her young husband. But is the case that simple? Lol of course not. This is actually the first appearance of Poirot which will lead to 45 more novels starring him. So if you want a good jumping off point for your Christie introduction, this book is a great start. Be warned it will lead to binging….
The last book I want to mention is Endless Night. Another standalone tale with no famous detective to solve the case. OK, this book really bothered me. I have thought about this book a lot since I finished reading it. Why? To avoid spoilers, it has to do with the ending and the reveal of who the killer was. I was so thrown by the reveal that I was shocked. Honestly shocked. I kind of want to go back and re read it to see what I missed. This book has a much darker tone than most Christie novels. I still recommend reading because it’s so different than other Christie novels.