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Agatha Christie alias “The Queen of crime”

February 25, 2019

Biography (1890-1976 ):

Agatha Christie is one of the most famous woman writers of the 20th century.

  • When she was a child, her parents gave her a traditional and old-fashioned education. She wrote at an early stage many poems, novels with always the support of her mother. So from the earliest days, she was already a really talented and fearless girl, which was a sign of her successful future.  To succeed in it, her mother took her daughter to Paris to finish her studies and complete her education. After this trip, Agatha-Christie returned to her native country, in the South of England, in Torquay. She confessed this place was an important inspiration for her character, Hercule Poirot, notably Belgian refugees who lived in a parish after the Great War. The landscape was inspiring too for plenty of mysteries with her Belgian detective.
  • ANECDOTE:

At a moment, she suddenly vanished into thin air. The police found her car next to a pond. But why disappear so quickly without saying a word? Many hypotheses suggest it was to increase the popularity of her new book or to take revenge on her unfaithful husband who wanted a divorce. Finally, the mystery was solved when she was found in a hotel under the her husband’s mistress’s name. This adventure increased consequently the number of her book sales and had been a great inspiration for another novel. Maybe it was planned, or not, what is sure is that she was a smart woman who has always cultivated a certain mystery about her life and her books that are really specific to her.

  • The 1930s were her most prosperous period regarding her novels which became quickly famous such as Murder on the Orient Express, Miss Marple series, Death on the Nile, And Then There Were None. She tried also to write something new ( not a detective one ) under a false name so that she couldn’t be submitted to critisism. It was a sort of protection but it lasted only for one book.
  • In 1939, England declared war onNazi Germany: it was the beginning of WWII. Agatha Christie, at that time, wanted to be involved in the rescue of those who were hurt and be useful in this conflict by helping others in Torquay’s hospital. Even though this woman had a very busy life, she managed to give her time to those who were in need. In a way she conveyed an image of a woman of heart, really appreciated by the population. She didn’t just do that: In fact, she acquired also a specific knowledge about poison which, we can see, is a very common element in her novels. This period of time influenced the author a lot because, through writing, she could  express what she thought about nazism and then make criticisms.

  • At the end of her work life,  she made her two principal characters die to ensure that nobody after her death would continue the story and to provide her family a secure income. In other terms, she was a forward-thinking woman.
  • In 1971 she was appointed Commander of the Order of the British Empire, a high honorary distinction.

Advise on books:

 

 

  • Murder in the Mews: it is a collection of short-stories with Hercule Poirot. It is a must-read because these stories are really captivating. I had never read short-stories before and this experience was thrilling. I like detective books and it was a great satisfaction to read these stories.
  • And Then There Were None: If you like books full of suspence, this one will probably be for you! Indeed, personally, I was hung on each chapter which continued to captivate me. I understand why she is now so famous  because she has her specific style and writes simple and understandable things which are accessible at all ages.

Agatha Christie’s reputation nowadays:

Nowadays, Agatha-Christie is still in our minds and lives. Her books are translated in many languages which signifies she is famous around the world. The fact that a woman in particular has acquired this notoriety shows how  women’s condition has evolved over centuries. Today she is considered as a reference in detective stories. She is “the queen of crime”. She also remains the best selling author of all times.

Today, despite her desire not to have sequels to her novels, her family allowed Sophie Hannah to write new Hercule Poirot stories: The Mystery of Three Quarters, Closed Casket and the Monogram Murders. Sophie Hannah is true to the character and to Christie’s style. Even though it goes against her final wishes one must admit that it is quite thrilling to find new Poirot’s stories and to perpetuate the myth.

Lauriane.

 

 

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