Agatha Christie bibliography


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Agatha Christie (1890–1976) was an English crime novelist, short-story writer and playwright. Her reputation rests on 66 detective novels and 14 short-story collections that have sold over two billion copies, an amount surpassed only by the Bible and the works of William Shakespeare.<sup id="cite_ref-Gage_CA_1-0" class="reference">[1]</sup> Her works contain several regular characters with whom the public became familiar, including Hercule Poirot, Miss Marple, Tommy and Tuppence Beresford, Parker Pyne and Harley Quin.<sup id="cite_ref-FOOTNOTEMorgan2015_2-0" class="reference">[2]</sup><sup id="cite_ref-Gage_CA_1-1" class="reference">[1]</sup> Christie wrote more Poirot stories than any of the others, even though she thought the character to be "rather insufferable".<sup id="cite_ref-FOOTNOTEMorgan2015_2-1" class="reference">[2]</sup> Following the publication of the 1975 novel Curtain, Poirot's obituary appeared on the front page of The New York Times.<sup id="cite_ref-AC_Poirot_3-0" class="reference">[3]</sup><sup id="cite_ref-NYT_Obit_4-0" class="reference">[4]</sup>
She married Archibald Christie in December 1914 but the couple were divorced in 1928.<sup id="cite_ref-FOOTNOTEMorgan2015_2-2" class="reference">[2]</sup> After he was sent to the Western Front in the First World War, she worked with the Voluntary Aid Detachment and in the chemist dispensary, giving her a working background knowledge of medicines and poisons.<sup id="cite_ref-FOOTNOTEMorgan2015_2-3" class="reference">[2]</sup> Christie's writing career began during the war after she was challenged by her sister to write a detective story; she produced The Mysterious Affair at Styles, which was turned down by two publishers before it was published in 1920.<sup id="cite_ref-FOOTNOTEMorgan2015_2-4" class="reference">[2]</sup><sup id="cite_ref-FOOTNOTEEngelhardt201183_5-0" class="reference">[5]</sup> Following the limited success of the novel, she continued to write and steadily built up a fan base. She went on to write over a hundred works, including further novels, short stories, plays, poetry, and two autobiographies. She also wrote six romantic novels under the pseudonym Mary Westmacott.<sup id="cite_ref-FOOTNOTEHall19846_6-0" class="reference">[6]</sup>
One of Christie's plays, The Mousetrap, opened in West End theatre in 1952 and, as of December 2019, was still running; in 2009 the London run exceeded 25,000 performances.<sup id="cite_ref-mousetrap_7-0" class="reference">[7]</sup> In September 2015 a public vote identified And Then There Were None—originally published in 1939 under the name Ten Little Niggers—as the public's favourite Christie novel; the book was the writer's favourite, and the one she found most difficult to write.<sup id="cite_ref-None_favourite_8-0" class="reference">[8]</sup>
In September 1930 Christie married the archaeologist Max Mallowan. The pair travelled frequently on archaeological expeditions and she used the experiences as a basis for some plots, including Murder on the Orient Express (1934), Murder in Mesopotamia (1936) and Death on the Nile (1937). She also wrote the autobiographical travel book Come, Tell Me How You Live (1946), which described their life in Syria; her biographer, Janet Morgan, reports that "archaeologists have celebrated ... [Christie's] contribution to Near Eastern exploration".<sup id="cite_ref-FOOTNOTEMorgan2015_2-5" class="reference">[2]</sup> Christie died in January 1976, her reputation as a crime novelist high.