April 1, 2011

The Others - Agatha Christie

It's been a while since I last read an Agatha Christie novel. In fact, that was in the early 90s and the reason for this was that I had to choose a subject for my English finals in high school which I had to prepare on my own, consequently to be presented at the finals. Obviously you couldn't pick just any author, but mostly the boring classic ones and somehow, thankfully, I got the OK to go ahead with my choice. Imagine my relief. Up until then I had only seen a couple of her movie adaptations, but that was good enough for me. I even choose the books I read according to how I liked the movies. Oh well. But the bottom line was that Agatha Christie's books weren't only engaging enough not to fall asleep, but I also found them highly enjoyable. Up to this day I love the genre, so maybe I should partly blame it one my choice so many years ago.

I will assume that most of you will at least have seen an Agatha Christie movie, though some might also know her books. Her two best known characters are Hercule Poirot and Miss Marple, and in my experience most people will prefer one or the other. Frankly, I always liked them both, though I may add that if I had to decide one over the other, I'd have to pick Miss Marple, the elderly spinster living in the small town of St. Mary Mead and playing amateur detective every time a dead body turns up.

As old as her novels are, these whodunits have certainly paved the way for other crime authors. Ingenious murders. Deception. Taut atmosphere. And strong psychological suspense. And, if I may say so, not many have ever achieved her sense for characterizations and plotting.
Not surprisingly she's the best-selling writer of all time (though I once heard that in fact it's a tie between her and Shakespeare). What might be surprising though is the fact that she also wrote romance novels under the name Mary Westmacott.

To name but a few of her books - Death On The Nile, Evil Under The Sun, And Then There Were None and 4:50 From Paddington.
I think anyone should have read one of her novels, so what are you waiting for? Go ahead, and read.

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