A macabre recurring dream … revenge against a blackmailer … jealousy, infidelity and a tortured conscience … a stolen gemstone … the haunting attraction of an ancient relic … a race against time … a tragic love triangle … a body in a box … an unexpected visitor from beyond the grave…
Nine quintessential examples of Agatha Christie’s brilliance are contained in this new collection of early short stories – including the very first one she ever wrote – and provide a unique glimpse of the Queen of Crime in the making.
‘Probably the best suspicion scatterer and diverter in the business.’ New York Herald Tribune
Agatha Christie - The Murder at the Vicarage
“Anyone who murdered Colonel Protheroe would be doing the world at large a service.” Reverend Clement The tranquillity of St Mary Mead is shattered when Lucius Protheroe is found dead. A thoroughly unpleasant character, there is no shortage of suspects with a motive for murder. Could it have been his unfaithful wife? Her artist lover? The daughter, set to inherit? Or even the mild-mannered vicar? Inspector Slack is at a loss. Perhaps Miss Jane Marple, the local village busybody, can help...
Agatha Christie - The Hound of Death
Twelve unexplained phenomena with no apparent earthly explanation… A dog-shaped gunpowder mark; an omen from ‘the other side’; a haunted house; a chilling séance; a case of split personalities; a recurring nightmare; an eerie wireless message; an elderly lady’s hold over a young man; a disembodied cry of ‘murder’; a young man’s sudden amnesia; a levitation experience; a mysterious SOS. To discover the answers, delve into the supernatural storytelling of Agatha Christie… ‘Twelve thrilling, chilling, mysteries.’ Observer
Agatha Christie - The Big Four
Alone, each was formidable. Together, they were virtually invincible. A brilliant Chinese man, an American millionaire, a French scientist and an elusive master of disguise: the big four join together to plot a criminal conspiracy that shocks even Poirot. As he tracks them down it becomes ever more apparent that this could be his final, fatal case!
Agatha Christie - Elephants Can Remember
Hercule Poirot stood on the cliff-top. Once, many years earlier, there had been a tragic accident. This was followed by the grisly discovery of two more bodies – a husband and wife – shot dead. But who had killed whom? Was it a suicide pact? A crime of passion? Or cold-blooded murder? Poirot delves back into the past and discovers that ‘old sins leave long shadows’. ‘Splendid… she tells us all we want to know and nothing that is irrelevant.’ The Times
Agatha Christie - One, Two, Buckle My Shoe
Even the great Poirot harbours a deep and abiding fear of the dentist, so it is with trepidation that he arrives at the celebrated Dr Morley’s surgery for an examination. Yet even Poirot couldn’t have guessed that only hours later he would be examining the dentist, dead in his surgery – an apparent suicide. Why would a successful dentist choose to kill himself on such a busy day? Poirot turns to the other patients for answers – but only finds other, darker questions. ‘A swift course of unflagging suspense leads to complete surprise.’ New York Times
Agatha Christie - Miss Marple's Final Cases
Despite the title, the stories collected here recount cases from the middle of Miss Marple's career. They are: "Sanctuary"; "Strange Jest"; "Tape-Measure Murder"; "The Case of the Caretaker"; "The Case of the Perfect Maid"; "Miss Marple Tells a Story"; "The Dressmaker's Doll"; "In a Glass Darkly"; "Greenshaw's Folly".
Agatha Christie - Death on the Nile
Linnet Ridgeway and Simon Doyle are being stalked by Simon’s furious ex, Jackie. So hell bent on taking revenge for the way she’d been treated she follows them all the way on their honeymoon to Egypt, aboard a steam cruiser travelling along the Nile. They are however not the only holidaymakers aboard the vessel, a certain Hercule Poirot attempts a relaxing cruise, only to be drawn into the threesome’s feud when Linette Ridgeway is found shot to death in her sleep.
Agatha Christie - The Clocks
Volume 64 in the Agatha Christie Collection (1963) Limited edition of 1000 copies worldwide As instructed, stenographer Sheila Webb let herself into the house at 19 Wilbraham Crescent. It was then that she made a grisly discovery: the body of a dead man sprawled across the living room floor. What intrigued Poirot about the case was the time factor. Although in a state of shock, Sheila clearly remembered having heard a cuckoo clock strike three o'clock. Yet, the four other clocks in the living room all showed the time as 4.13. Even more strangely, only one of these clocks belonged to the owner of the house...
Agatha Christie - Dead Man's Folly
Sir George and Lady Stubbs, the hosts of a village fete, hit upon the novel idea of staging a mock murder mystery. In good faith, Ariadne Oliver, the well known crime writer, agrees to organise the murder hunt. Despite weeks of meticulous planning, at the last minute Ariadne calls her friend Hercule Poirot for his expert assistance. Instinctively, she senses that something sinister is about to happen...
Agatha Christie - Towards Zero
What is the connection between a failed suicide attempt, a wrongful accusation of theft against a schoolgirl, and the romantic life of a tennis player? To the casual observer, apparently nothing. When a houseparty gathers at Gull's Point, the seaside home of an elderly widow, earlier events come to a dramatic head.
Agatha Christie - Problem at Pollensa Bay
All great crime writers have their favourite creations. Similarly, every great sleuth has their own preferred method of deduction. Take the charming Parker Pyne, who relies upon an intuitive knowledge of human nature to solve the Problem at Pollensa Bay. Or Mr Satterthwaite, who seeks inspiration through his collaboration with the enigmatic Mr Quin in The Harlequin Tea Set mystery. Then, of course, there’s Poirot, whose measured analysis of motive and opportunity is tested to the full in Yellow Iris, when he receives an anonymous call about a matter of life and death… ‘The acknowledged queen of detective fiction.’ Observer
Agatha Christie - Evil Under the Sun
A quiet holiday at a secluded hotel in Devon is all that Hercule Poirot wants, but amongst his fellow guests is a beautiful and vain woman who, seemingly oblivious to her own husband’s feelings, revels in the attention of another woman’s husband. The scene is set for murder, but can the field of suspects really be as narrow as it first appears?
Agatha Christie - Sleeping Murder
Soon after Gwenda moved into her new home, odd things started to happen. Despite her best efforts to modernise the house, she only succeeded in dredging up its past. Worse, she felt an irrational sense of terror every time she climbed the stairs. In fear, Gwenda turns to Jane Marple to exorcise her ghosts. Between them, they are faced with having to solve a "perfect" crime committed many years before. "A puzzle that is tortuous, surprising and finally satisfying." _Sunday Express_
Agatha Christie - Crooked House
Three generations of the Leonides family live together in a large, if somewhat crooked looking, house. Then the wealthy patriarch, Aristide, is murdered. Suspicion falls on the whole household, including Aristide’s two sons, his widow – fifty years his junior – and even his three grandchildren. Could any member of this seemingly devoted family have had a hand in his death? Can Charles Hayward, fiancé of the late millionaire’s granddaughter, help the police find the killer and clear his loved one's name?
Agatha Christie - Poirot's Early Cases
Poirot's Early Cases was published in 1974. It includes the following short stories: The Affair at the Victory Ball, The Adventure of the Clapham Cook, The Cornish Mystery, The Adventure of Johnnie Waverly, The Double Clue, The King of Clubs, The LeMesurier Inheritance, The Lost Mine, The Plymouth Express, The Chocolate Box, The Submarine Plans, Third Floor Flat, Double Sin, The Market Basing Mystery, Wasp's Nest, The Veiled Lady, Problem at Sea and How Does Your Garden Grow?
Agatha Christie - Poirot Investigates
First there was the mystery of the film star and the diamond ... then came the 'suicide' that was murder ... the mystery of the absurdly cheap flat ... a suspicious death in a locked gun-room ... a million dollar bond robbery ... the curse of a pharoah's tomb ... a jewel robbery by the sea ... the abduction of a Prime Minister ... the disappearance of a banker ... a phone call from a dying man ... and, finally, the mystery of the missing will. What links these fascinating cases? Only the brilliant deductive powers of Hercule Poirot! 'A capital collection ... ingeniously constructed, and told with an engaging lightness of style.' Literary Review
Agatha Christie - Third Girl
Three single girls share a London flat. The first works as a secretary; the second is an artist; the third, who comes to Poirot for help, disappears believing she is a murderer. There are rumours of revolvers, flick-knives and blood stains. But, without hard evidence, it will take all Poirot's tenacity to establish whether the third girl is guilty, innocent or insane.
Agatha Christie - Murder in the Mews
Murder, stolen plans, a mysterious death and a menage a trois - four intriguing novellas featuring Hercule Poirot...How did a woman holding a pistol in her right hand manage to shoot herself in the left temple? What was the link between a ghost sighting and the disappearance of top secert military plans? How did the bullet that killed Sir Gervase shatter a mirror in another part of the room? And who destroyed the 'eternal triangle' of love involving renowned beauty, Valentine Chantry? Hercule Poirot is faced with four mystifying cases - Murder in the Mews, The Incredible Theft, Dead Man's Mirror and Triangle at Rhodes - each a miniature classic of characterisation, incident and suspense.
Agatha Christie - The Adventure of the Christmas Pudding
An English country house at Christmas? Time should be the perfect place to get away from it all - but nothing is ever simple for Hercule Poirot, as he find not one but five baffling cases to solve. First comes a sinister warning on his pillow to avoid the plum pudding... then the discovery of a corpse in a chest... next, an overheard quarrel that leads to murder... the strange case of a dead... man's eating habits... and the puzzle of a victim who dreams of his own suicide.
Agatha Christie - The ABC Murders
There’s a serial killer on the loose, murdering his victims in alphabetical order. As a macabre calling card he leaves beside each victim’s corpse the ABC Railway Guide open at the name of the town where the murder has taken place. With the whole country in a state of panic, and growing more confident with each successful execution – Mrs Ascher in Andover, Betty Barnard in Bexhill, Carmichael Larke in Churston – the murderer’s trail of deliberate clues taunts the proud Poirot. Which might just be his first mistake… ‘A masterwork of carefully concealed artifice… most stunningly original.’ Julian Symons