Agatha Christie

Agatha Christie (1890-1976) was an English writer of mystery books who perfected the art of the twisty plot and remains the bestselling novelist of all time. Her books include 66 mysteries and 14 short story collections and she also wrote the world’s longest-running play, The Mousetrap.

We asked her only grandson, Mathew Prichard—who spent decades managing her literary estate—to recommend the best Agatha Christie books to us. Her books have also been recommended across a range of interviews on Five Books, with many modern writers of mystery and crime including her books among their favourites. Her memoir based on her trips to the Middle East with her archaeologist husband, Max Mallowan, is also highly recommended.

The novel Agatha Christie herself was most proud of was Crooked House.

Books by Agatha Christie

“She wrote many wonderful books without Poirot or Miss Marple in them. Not only Endless Night, but also the book she was most proud of, Crooked House. She was desperate to write more stories like that. Life was a constant struggle, throughout the 50s, to write the books she really wanted to write.”

Mathew Prichard recommends the Best Agatha Christie Books

Interviews where books by Agatha Christie were recommended

The Best Agatha Christie Books, recommended by Mathew Prichard

Agatha Christie wrote some 80 mysteries and short story collections, nearly all designed to entertain and delight readers with their ingenious plot twists. Here, her only grandson, Mathew Prichard, who oversaw her literary estate for many decades, recommends books that give a good sense of the range of her work, from Miss Marple to Hercule Poirot to mysteries featuring neither, and including her best short story.  

The Best Wartime Mystery Books, recommended by Caroline Crampton

The ‘golden age’ of detective fiction is usually considered to end suddenly with the outbreak of the Second World War. But many of the era’s leading novelists continued to write prolifically throughout, says Caroline Crampton, creator of the popular Shedunnit podcast. Here she selects five of the best wartime mysteries.

The Best Murder Mystery Books, recommended by Stuart Turton

The best murder mysteries set up their stories like a game between the reader and the writer, says Stuart Turton, bestselling author and lifelong mystery fan. Here he highlights five of his favourites, in which detectives make miraculous deductions, or doggedly chase clues until they meet with satisfying solutions.

The Best Detective Fiction, recommended by Jeffrey Archer

With so many works of detective fiction coming out each year, which books stand the test of time? Here, bestselling British author Jeffrey Archer talks us through some of his favourites, the books he found completely unputdownable and made him want to read everything the author had written.

The Best Mystery Books, recommended by David Baldacci

The best mystery books are completely unputdownable and addictive, the entertainment they provide more portable than watching TV and so much more satisfying than looking at your phone. Bestselling author David Baldacci, one of the masters of the genre and a passionate advocate for literacy and reading, talks us through some of the best mystery books ever written—as well as the contemporary authors he most admires.

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