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CrimeSquad.com
Agatha Christie's Top Ten


1. Murder on the Orient Express - Agatha Christie
Harper Collins £7.99

"Even Christie could see that this one would stand out amongst the many books she wrote and it is still every bit a classic today. This has everything, an atmosphere of impending doom, a fantastic cast of suspects, red herrings galore and all on the most celebrated train in the world. This is one of those crime novels that definitely comes under 'comfort reading'. And then watch the film with a cast to die for! And I mean the Sidney Lumet from 1974, not the train crash of recent years. "

2. And Then There Were None - Agatha Christie
Harper Collins £7.99

"Ten people each with their own guilty secret being killed off one by one. Despite her detractors, Christie was decades ahead of her generation in the crime writing field and this book perfectly shows that she knew how to lead her reader by the nose and smack them between the eyes! Astonishing."

3. The Thirteen Problems - Agatha Christie
Harper Collins £6.99

"This is one of my favourites, too. Not only is it Marple at her best but these thirteen stories are all wonderful, individual gems that make a whole necklace of double bluff and misdirection. This is one book I have read and re-read and listened to as well. I never tire of Christie's ability to get so much in such a short number of pages. "

4. Ordeal By Innocence - Agatha Christie
Harper Collins £6.99

"The Argyle family have always been a mixed bunch with a domineering mother and her adopted children. When she is found murdered the leads appear to point to her wayward son, Jack. His only witness cannot be found. Now Dr. Calgary who was his witness has returned to these shores and knows that Jack could not have killed his adoptive mother. This novel with such a quirky family is a sublime Christie novel, unlike any others she had written before. I can understand why she placed this one within her Top Ten."

5. Crooked House - Agatha Christie
Harper Collins £6.99

"Unusually, Christie wrote a foreword for this novel as she liked it so much. I have read it twice and although I can see how clever it is, 'Crooked House' hasn't stimulated me like other novels of Christie's. However, I am looking forward to seeing the film that has been adapted by Downton's creator, Julian Fellowes."

6. Towards Zero - Agatha Christie
Harper Collins £6.99

"It is strange that the main of Christie's own personal choice should so heavily highlight her standalone novels. Had she tired of Poirot so much to only allow him such limited space on her Top Ten? Again, I wasn't blown away by this title but maybe I'll go back and re-read it now that Christie herself held it in such high regard."

7. Endless Night - Agatha Christie
Harper Collins £6.99

"Christie weaves the supernatural with a stunning psychological novel of love, betrayal and gypsy folklore. This has been regarded by many as one of Christie's strongest from her later years."

8. The Moving Finger - Agatha Christie
Harper Collins £6.99

"I have to confess that Christie has stymied me with this one. When I read Christie's autobiography about thirty years ago I was shocked to read that she thought this title as one of her own favourites. I have recently re-read this and still found it slow despite it being one of her slimmest books and Miss Marple doesn't even appear until about 60 pages from the end. But I guess I have to bow down to the great lady herself - but in my opinion 'A Murder is Announced' is a far better Marple..."

9. Death Comes As The End - Agatha Christie
Harper Collins £7.99

"Christie went on many expeditions with her husband, Max Mallowan, to the Middle East, taking in Egypt, Iran, Iraq and many other places. She wrote many books in that part of the world including the infamous 'Death on the Nile' and 'They Came to Baghdad'. However, 'Death Comes As The End' is usually credited with brilliant writing and characterisation (issues that Christie has been charged of lacking in her books) but here I imagine that with such a subject close to her heart this one was destined to stand head and shoulders above."

10. The Murder of Roger Ackroyd - Agatha Christie
Harper Collins £7.99

"This book caused such a 'hoo-hah' when first published in 1926. Like Marmite, you either loved it or hated it! Christie was then classed as a 'whippersnapper' who had only written five crime novels previously. And she had the temerity to storm in and pull the rug from under everyone! Again, this shows Christie was so far ahead of the game. If you haven't read it - then do! And make sure nobody tells you the ending before you get there yourself. This is a masterclass lesson in sleight-of-hand. Amazing."