A New Project: Reading Agatha Christie

Observing my reading over the past couple years, I really like mysteries. I suppose the same applies to my TV viewing as well. (And film – have you seen Knives Out!? My favorite movie of 2019.) True, they’re typically not  difficult (unless the subject matter is particularly unsettling or gory), but they are so much fun to read. To try to guess the end (if you don’t…oops…read it before you get there), to figure out the clues. So I’ve been reading a lot of them. Various authors. Robert Galbraith. Ann Cleeves. PD James. But mostly, Agatha Christie.

It really started, I suppose, when Kenneth Branagh remade Murder on the Orient Express (which I did enjoy, despite his unfortunate mustache). So I reread that. And then thought that some more Christie might be nice. Crooked House. Hercule Poirot’s Christmas. Now, I have a mysteries & thrillers project list (have I mentioned how much I like lists? 😉), but, inspired in part by Cleo’s embarkment on an Agatha Christie reading journey, I’ve decided to amend the list with ALL of Christie. And read them in order (although I might skip some of the ones I’ve read recently). I will skip the books she wrote under the name Mary Westmacott as those aren’t mysteries, and I may or may not read her autobiography (which, actually, I read in high school).

I’ve read the first couple (1, 3, and 2, in that order – an oops due to forgetting which book came second) and will be posting on those soonish.

For the deathly curious, the list I will be reading from, in order. Due to library availability (and since I prefer to read on paper), I’ll be reading from the short story collections as published in the US. (It’s possible that some of those will be read out of order since the stories would have been individually at earlier dates anyways. This is meant to be fun, not dogmatic.)

  1. The Mysterious Affair at Styles, 1921, Hercule Poirot
  2. The Secret Adversary, 1922, Tommy and Tuppence
  3. The Murder on the Links, 1923, Hercule Poirot
  4. Poirot Investigates, 1924, Hercule Poirot (Short Stories)
  5. The Man in the Brown Suit, 1924, Colonel Race
  6. The Secret of Chimneys, 1925, Superintendent Battle
  7. The Murder of Roger Ackroyd, 1926, Hercule Poirot
  8. The Big Four, 1927, Hercule Poirot
  9. The Mystery of the Blue Train, 1928, Hercule Poirot
  10. The Seven Dials Mystery, 1929, Superintendent Battle
  11. Partners in Crime, 1929, Tommy and Tuppence (Short Stories)
  12. The Mysterious Mr. Quin, 1930, Harley Quin (Short Stories)
  13. The Murder at the Vicarage, 1930, Miss Marple
  14. The Sittaford Mystery, 1931, Mystery (US: The Murder at Hazelmoor)
  15. Peril at End House, 1932, Hercule Poirot
  16. The Thirteen Problems, 1932, Various (US: The Tuesday Club Murders; short stories)
  17. Lord Edgware Dies, 1933, Hercule Poirot (US: Thirteen at Dinner)
  18. Murder on the Orient Express, 1934, Hercule Poirot (US: Murder in the Calais Coach)
  19. Why Didn’t They Ask Evans?, 1934, Mystery (US: The Boomerang Clue)
  20. Parker Pyne Investigates, 1934, Parkery Pyne (US: Mr.Parker Pyne, Detective)
  21. Three Act Tragedy, 1935, Hercule Poirot (US: Murder in Three Acts)
  22. Death in the Clouds, 1935, Hercule Poirot (US: i)
  23. The A.B.C. Murders, 1936, Hercule Poirot
  24. Murder in Mesopotamia, 1936, Hercule Poirot
  25. Cards on the Table, 1936, Hercule Poirot
  26. Murder in the Mews, 1937, Hercule Poirot (US: Dead Man’s Mirror; short stories)
  27. Dumb Witness, 1937, Hercule Poirot (US: Poirot Loses a Client)
  28. Death on the Nile, 1937, Hercule Poirot
  29. Appointment with Death, 1938, Hercule Poirot
  30. Hercule Poirot’s Christmas, 1938, Hercule Poirot (US: Murder for Christmas or A Holiday for Murder)
  31. Murder is Easy, 1939, Superintendent Battle (US: Easy to Kill)
  32. And Then There Were None, 1939
  33. The Regatta Mystery, 1939, Various (Short Stories)
  34. Sad Cypress, 1940, Hercule Poirot
  35. One, Two, Buckle My Shoe, 1940, Hercule Poirot (US: The Patriotic Murders or An Overdose of Death)
  36. Evil Under the Sun, 1941, Hercule Poirot
  37. N or M?, 1941, Tommy and Tuppence
  38. The Body in the Library, 1942, Miss Marple
  39. Five Little Pigs, 1942, Hercule Poirot (US: Murder in Retrospect)
  40. The Moving Finger, 1943, Miss Marple
  41. Towards Zero, 1944, Superintendent Battle
  42. Death Comes as the End, 1945
  43. Sparkling Cyanide, 1945, Colonel Race (US: Remembered Death)
  44. The Hollow, 1946, Hercule Poirot
  45. The Labours of Hercules, 1947, Hercule Poirot (Short Stories)
  46. Taken at the Flood, 1948, Hercule Poirot (US: There is a Tide…)
  47. The Witness for the Prosecution and Other Stories, 1948, Various (Short Stories)
  48. Crooked House, 1949
  49. A Murder is Announced, 1950, Miss Marple
  50. Three Blind Mice and Other Stories, 1950, Mystery (Short Stories)
  51. They Came to Baghdad, 1951
  52. The Under Dog and Other Stories, 1951, Hercule Poirot (Short Stories)
  53. Mrs. McGinty’s Dead, 1952, Hercule Poirot
  54. They Do It with Mirrors, 1952, Miss Marple (US: Murder with Mirrors)
  55. After the Funeral, 1953, Hercule Poirot (US: Funerals are Fatal)
  56. A Pocket Full of Rye, 1953, Miss Marple
  57. Destination Unknown, 1954, Mystery (US: So Many Steps to Death)
  58. Hercule Poirot and the Greenshore Folly, 2014, Hercule Poirot (written in 1954 to raise money for a church)
  59. Hickory Dickory Dock, 1955, Hercule Poirot
  60. Dead Man’s Folly, 1956, Hercule Poirot
  61. 50 from Paddington, 1957, Miss Marple (US: What Mrs. McGillicuddy Saw!)
  62. Ordeal by Innocence, 1958
  63. Cat Among the Pigeons, 1959, Hercule Poirot
  64. Double Sin and Other Stories, 1961, Various (Short Stories; US)
  65. The Pale Horse, 1961
  66. The Mirror Crack’d from Side to Side, 1962, Miss Marple (US: The Mirror Crack’d)
  67. The Clocks, 1963, Hercule Poirot
  68. A Caribbean Mystery, 1964, Miss Marple
  69. At Bertram’s Hotel, 1965, Miss Marple
  70. Third Girl, 1966, Hercule Poirot
  71. Endless Night, 1967
  72. By the Pricking of My Thumbs, 1968, Tommy and Tuppence
  73. Hallowe’en Party, 1969, Hercule Poirot
  74. Passenger to Frankfurt, 1970
  75. Nemesis, 1971, Miss Marple
  76. The Golden Ball and Other Stories, 1971, Various (Short Stories)
  77. Elephants Can Remember, 1972, Hercule Poirot
  78. Postern of Fate, 1973, Tommy and Tuppence
  79. Curtain, 1975, Hercule Poirot (Poirot’s last case, written in the 1940s)
  80. Sleeping Murder, 1976, Miss Marple (Miss Marple’s last case, written in the 1940s)
  81. Miss Marple’s Final Cases and Two Other Stories, 1979, Miss Marple
  82. The Harlequin Tea Set, 1997, Various (Short Stories; US [stories published in other UK collections])

10 thoughts on “A New Project: Reading Agatha Christie”

  1. This looks like fun! I read loads of Agatha Christie year ago and then rather left her but I am beginning to think it’s time to go back to her, may be with Tommy and Tuppence

  2. Ahh… so you took this perpetual challenge too. Welcome on board, Amanda! 🙂
    I have started next year, and am in my 12th book (but I skip short stories collections and Detection Club collabs). It’s been fun so far. For February, I’ll try a Mary Westmacott’s non mystery: Giant’s Bread. Just wondering how good Christie would be in a romance, let’s see!
    Have fun, then.. 🙂

    1. Thanks, Fanda! I like how quick these are to read, it makes it seem like quite the doable challenge. I’ve decided to include the short stories, but I find I’m not really interested in the romances, though I guess I’m curious to hear what they’re like. Enjoy!

  3. Yay! You’re joining me! Now perhaps you can get me started again. I just have to finish this The Iliad read, which I love, but is taking up so much time!

    Thanks for the list as well. I’m on The Blue Train, although I still have to finish my review of The Big Four. Not quite sure still if I liked that one.

    1. Cleo, I’d say you’re a “bad” influence, but really, I’m very happy you helped inspire me to do this! And yes, once you finish the Iliad, you must take a little Christie break. I feel like I’ve read The Blue Train, maybe, but it’s been so long since I read most of the Chrisite books I HAVE previously read, I can’t say at all for sure. If I have, I certainly don’t remember it. Enjoy!

    1. Thanks, Silvia! “When you put it that way, 82 does sound like a lot of books, but they are all really quick reads, so it’s probably the easiest project I’ve started.

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