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Agatha Christie: A Biography

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First published in 1984 and now available in paperback, having been unavailable for more than two years, a biography of Agatha Christie based on family papers and other protected material, which describes the writer's life, work and relationships.


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First published in 1984 and now available in paperback, having been unavailable for more than two years, a biography of Agatha Christie based on family papers and other protected material, which describes the writer's life, work and relationships.

30 review for Agatha Christie: A Biography

  1. 5 out of 5

    Ingrid

    I have abandoned this book after 180 pages. It's so detailed that I've lost interest.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Beth Peninger

    ZZZZZZZZZZZZZ. I'm so disappointed. The only authorized biography of Agatha Christie is a snoozer. So dull and so disappointing. I adore Agatha Christie and was excited to finally read her biography, my excitement was dulled almost immediately. Janet Morgan was given full access to Christie's notes, diaries, pictures, etc. And from those, and interviews with people who knew her, she composed a very dull accounting of Christie's life. There was entirely too much detail about unnecessary things an ZZZZZZZZZZZZZ. I'm so disappointed. The only authorized biography of Agatha Christie is a snoozer. So dull and so disappointing. I adore Agatha Christie and was excited to finally read her biography, my excitement was dulled almost immediately. Janet Morgan was given full access to Christie's notes, diaries, pictures, etc. And from those, and interviews with people who knew her, she composed a very dull accounting of Christie's life. There was entirely too much detail about unnecessary things and it overshadowed the parts of Christie's life that was interesting. Christie kind of fell into writing, starting out first writing sonnets and poetry. It wasn't until she was about 20 that she began writing stories. There was never an explanation, perhaps Christie herself didn't know, where her ideas for murder came from. She did study pharmacy extensively so her knowledge of poisons and such certainly contributed to her murders. The interesting part of Christie's life as an author was that while she enjoyed researching and developing story lines she thought the actual process of writing was all tedious and quite a chore. She also was not well educated in grammar and spelling and it seems a lot of editing had to happen in those two areas before the book could go to print. As she grew older it seems that maybe she began to enjoy the actual writing as well. She constantly was tinkering around with plots and characters and kept notebooks and scratch pads full of notes to jog her memory. Some of her characters created she didn't actually use until years after she thought of them. One thing, there were actually several, that annoyed Christie was the revelation that she was also the very popular author, Mary Westmacott. She wanted it to remain a secret pen name in which nobody ever knew it was also the very popular suspense author, Agatha Christie. But alas, she was "outed" rather early on in Westmacott's career and it bugged her until the day she died. It's so unfortunate that Morgan's biography of Agatha Christie is so boring, so dull. I literally fell asleep several times while reading it. Christie's life wasn't that dull but Morgan certainly made it seem so.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Carolyn

    I read this biography years ago. The book that is shown is a new edition of that book. This was an incredibly well researched book that tells the story of one of the most layered personalities that I have ever read. She went "missing" for almost two weeks sometime in the nineteen twenties, and to this day no one really knows what happened to her. It was suspected initially that she must have been kidnapped and feared dead. Her auto was found abandonded severall miles from her home. All these yea I read this biography years ago. The book that is shown is a new edition of that book. This was an incredibly well researched book that tells the story of one of the most layered personalities that I have ever read. She went "missing" for almost two weeks sometime in the nineteen twenties, and to this day no one really knows what happened to her. It was suspected initially that she must have been kidnapped and feared dead. Her auto was found abandonded severall miles from her home. All these years later, the world still does not know the circumstances of her disappearance or even where she was during that time. Her second and very happy marriage was to Max Mallowan, an archaeologist. Ms. Christie, beginning in the ninetween thirties, spent many years living in Syria and Iraq helping him with his digs while continuing to write her books. She loved his work, the people, and the land. She felt very much at home in Baghdad, where they lived during these yeears. Her play, The Mousetrap, is one of the longest running theatrical productions in England and America. This is a wonderful book and I highly recommend it.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Leah

    A medium-informative book about the great Mrs. Christie. The author slightly over-does the constant links between Christie's body of work and her own life. She (the author) constantly alludes to a house, a person, a scene from Christie's personal experience that makes an appearance in one of Christie's books. While this is informative in cases like Murder on the Orient Express and Christie's own experiences riding that train, it seems overdone in this biography. Another mystifying feature of this A medium-informative book about the great Mrs. Christie. The author slightly over-does the constant links between Christie's body of work and her own life. She (the author) constantly alludes to a house, a person, a scene from Christie's personal experience that makes an appearance in one of Christie's books. While this is informative in cases like Murder on the Orient Express and Christie's own experiences riding that train, it seems overdone in this biography. Another mystifying feature of this biography is that it lacks even a rudimentary bibliography of Agatha Christie's works. I found myself wanting to know the dates of a couple of her novels, looked in the back for a bibliography, and was frustrated to discover that none was included. I'm looking forward to reading the 2007 biography of Christie by Laura Thompson. Perhaps it will be both more complete and more scholarly.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Oda Renate

    Did I start this last year?Yes. Is it a long book? No, not really. It is however dragging at parts, I liked it because you know if I hated it I would dimply DNF it. Yet its not a very well written book. I read this because I want to read more biographies, and I love Agatha Christies books, I have noticed that the biographies I have enjoyed most are autobiograpies. Not sure if it means there are NO good biographies or if I simply have read the wrong ones.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Kristen

    While Agatha Christie was obviously a super famous and successful mystery writer, the most interesting thing about her from a biographical perspective is the fact that she lived from 1890-1976. The descriptions of Agatha's early life -- growing up in a large house with servants, walking everywhere, being trained in lady-like subjects like music and painting -- are almost indistinguishable from a Jane Austen novel. Then there's a great stretch where Agatha and her first husband, Archie, go on a t While Agatha Christie was obviously a super famous and successful mystery writer, the most interesting thing about her from a biographical perspective is the fact that she lived from 1890-1976. The descriptions of Agatha's early life -- growing up in a large house with servants, walking everywhere, being trained in lady-like subjects like music and painting -- are almost indistinguishable from a Jane Austen novel. Then there's a great stretch where Agatha and her first husband, Archie, go on a tour of the British Empire for his work, visiting locales like Burma, Rhodesia, and Ceylon. Later, after her divorce, she can just waltz into Cairo as a British subject and live like she never left home. The World Wars seem to change everything, and by the time of Agatha's death, she's inhabiting a world that feels much more like our own. It's an extraordinary stretch of history to have lived through, and I really enjoyed that aspect of the book. Unfortunately, most other parts of the biography were not nearly so compelling. It's a lot more enjoyable to read Agatha's novels than it is to read about her process of writing them. And a ton of time was spent on her various financial troubles and constant bickering with her publishers. It's not a bad read overall, but the best parts were too few and far between.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Jeffrey Marks

    Excellent biography of Christie, though a bit heavy on her theatrical writings and a little light on her later years.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Cece

    Great-now I have to go back and reread all the books Christie names as her favorites.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Medlibrarian

    Not a bad biography. Very well researched and well written.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Helen

    To anyone who is a fan of Agatha Christi this is a book you will want to read.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Cozy Cat Reviews

    As a Agatha Christie fan and life long reader of all of her works, I approach each book about her with trepidation as many authors take liberties about her writing and her life. Not the case here as this is the "definitive" Agatha Christie Biography. The author was granted full access to her papers, her work and her life by the family and publishers. I was pleased to see that this book encompasses her entire body of work as well as the differing timelines of her life. Agatha Christie is the worl As a Agatha Christie fan and life long reader of all of her works, I approach each book about her with trepidation as many authors take liberties about her writing and her life. Not the case here as this is the "definitive" Agatha Christie Biography. The author was granted full access to her papers, her work and her life by the family and publishers. I was pleased to see that this book encompasses her entire body of work as well as the differing timelines of her life. Agatha Christie is the world's greatest author and that is why her work endures today. This biography stands alone as the author presents the real Christie to her readers. The Christie who brilliantly created so many time honored charcters , plays, movies and inspired millions to read her books. A excellent read for all Christie fans. Very well done to the author. I highly recommend this book for every Agatha Christie fan across the globe.

  12. 4 out of 5

    James Andrew

    A full and compelling account This is a detailed history of the development of the most popular crime writer of her time. It gives insight into her personality and times and the growth of her different novels. A fascinating read and a must for any Christie fan.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Marie (UK)

    This is a very readable biography well set out and emphasising Christie's desire for privacy.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Samantha Beggs

    A very detailed account of Agatha Christie’s life, I fact too detailed. It was quite rambling in parts. Overall interesting but could have been shorter

  15. 5 out of 5

    Laura Noakes

    Interesting, but sometimes veered a little on the over-explain-y side. But on the whole I enjoyed it, and it was nice to find out more about Agatha

  16. 5 out of 5

    Tina Panik

    Interesting, but dense in word choice and structure. Christie's life is fascinating, and the story presented here is balanced, even if the pace is excruciatingly slow.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Ken Ficara

    http://steelbrassnwood.livejournal.co... http://steelbrassnwood.livejournal.co...

  18. 5 out of 5

    Rimal

  19. 5 out of 5

    Veera

  20. 4 out of 5

    Tracy

  21. 5 out of 5

    Rena Williams

  22. 5 out of 5

    Sasha

  23. 5 out of 5

    Madinka

  24. 5 out of 5

    Harry Tomos

  25. 5 out of 5

    Bianca

  26. 5 out of 5

    Divna Mladjenovic

  27. 5 out of 5

    Deirdre Siegel

  28. 4 out of 5

    Rosalie Elfwing

  29. 4 out of 5

    Lucia

  30. 4 out of 5

    Ruth Spencr

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