Nine quintessential examples of Agatha Christie’s brilliance are contained in this collection of early short stories, including the very first one she ever wrote, providing a unique glimpse of the Queen of Crime in the making.
4.50 FROM PADDINGTON
Elspeth sees a man strangling a woman in a passing train. But who will take her story seriously? The indomitable Miss Marple of course.
THE ABC MURDERS
There's a serial killer on the loose, bent on working his way through the alphabet. And as a macabre calling card he leaves beside each victim the ABC Railway Guide open at the name of the town where the murder has taken place. There seems little chance of the murderer being caught - until he makes the vain mistake of challenging Hercule Poirot to frustrate his plans...
AFTER THE FUNERAL
When Cora is savagely murdered, the extraordinary remark she made the previous day at her brother Richard's funeral suddenly takes on a chilling significance. At the reading of Richard's will, Cora was clearly heard to say: 'It's been hushed up very nicely, hasn't it! But he was murdered, wasn't he?’. Hercule Poirot studies the case.
AGATHA CHRISTIE: COLLECTED SHORT STORIES
A collection of 35 classic Agatha Christie stories of murder and suspense.
AND THEN THERE WERE NONE
Ten strangers, apparently with little in common, are lured to an island mansion off the coast of Devon by the mysterious U.N. Owen. That evening, one of the guests is found murdered by a deadly dose of cyanide. The tension escalates as the survivors realise the killer is not only among them but is preparing to strike again… and again…
APPOINTMENT WITH DEATH
Among the red cliffs of Petra sat the corpse of Mrs Boynton. A tiny puncture mark on her wrist was the only sign of the fatal injection that had killed her. Hercule Poirot recalled a chance remark he’d overheard back in Jerusalem: ‘You see, don’t you, that she’s got to be killed?’ Mrs Boynton was, indeed, the most detestable woman he’d ever met…
AT BERTRAM'S HOTEL
When Miss Marple spends a brief holiday in an expensive and highly respectable London hotel, she encounters violence and mystery.
THE BIG FOUR
Framed in the doorway of Poirot's bedroom stood an uninvited guest, coated from head to foot in dust. Who was he? Above all, what was the significance of the figure 4, scribbled over and over again on a sheet of paper? Poirot finds himself plunged into a world of international intrigue, risking his life to uncover the truth about 'Number Four'.
When he discovers his secret formula is missing, Sir Claud asks the thief to return it to the library whilst the lights are off. When they go on again Sir Claud is dead and Poirot must find the murderer.
BY THE PRICKING OF MY THUMBS
Agatha Christie has brought back her amateur detectives, Tommy and Tuppence Beresford who become entangled in murders long forgotten.
CARDS ON THE TABLE
Mr Shaitana was famous as a flamboyant party host. Nevertheless, Poirot had some reservations about accepting a party invitation to view Shaitana’s private art collection. Indeed, what began as an absorbing evening of bridge was to turn into a more dangerous game altogether…
A CARIBBEAN MYSTERY
Jane Marple takes a holiday in the Caribbean where she encounters a retired major who tells her the story of a strange coincidence. Unfortunately he never gets to the end of the story and once more Miss Marple is involved in a murder hunt.
CAT AMONG THE PIGEONS
Two teachers investigate a mysterious flashing light in the sports pavilion. They stumble upon the body of the unpopular games mistress – shot through the heart from point blank range. The school is thrown into chaos when the ‘cat’ strikes again. Unfortunately, schoolgirl Julia Upjohn knows too much. In particular, she knows that without Hercule Poirot’s help, she will be the next victim…
Stenographer Sheila Webb let herself into the house at 19 Wilbraham Crescent and made a grisly discovery: the body of a dead man. What intrigued Poirot was the time factor. Sheila 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. However, only one of these clocks belonged to the owner of the house...
COME, TELL ME HOW YOU LIVE
Agatha Christie was already well known as a crime writer when she accompanied her husband, Max Mallowan, to Syria and Iraq in the 1930s. She took enormous interest in all his excavations, and when friends asked what her strange life was like, she decided to answer their questions in this delightful book.
When Aristide Leonides, the rich head of Three Gables is poisoned, his young wife and her lover are suspects for his murder.
The house guests at Styles seemed perfectly pleasant to Captain Hastings, so it came as a shock to him when Poirot declared that one of them was a five-times murderer. The ageing detective was crippled with arthritis, but had his deductive instincts finally deserted him?
DEAD MAN'S FOLLY
Sir George and Lady Stubbs decide to have a murder mystery party. They ask Ariadne Oliver to organise this for them and she calls in Hercule Poirot for some help when she feels something is ‘just not right'.
DEATH COMES AS THE END
It is Egypt, 2000 BC, where death gives meaning to life. At the foot of a cliff lies the broken, twisted body of Nofret, concubine to a Ka-priest. Young, beautiful and venomous, most agree that she deserved to die like a snake. Yet Renisenb, the priest’s daughter, believes that the woman’s death was not fate, but murder. Increasingly, she becomes convinced that the source of evil lurks within her own father’s household.
DEATH IN THE CLOUDS
From seat No.9, Hercule Poirot could observe his fellow air passengers. Over to his right sat a pretty young woman, ahead, in seat No.13, sat a Countess with a poorly-concealed cocaine habit. What Poirot did not yet realize was that behind him, in seat No.2, sat the slumped, lifeless body of a woman...
DEATH ON THE NILE
The tranquillity of a cruise along the Nile is shattered by the discovery that Linnet Ridgeway has been shot through the head. She was young, stylish and beautiful, a girl who had everything – until she lost her life. Hercule Poirot recalls an earlier outburst by a fellow passenger, but in this exotic setting’ nothing is ever quite what it seems…
Emily is an elderly spinster who is accidentally poisoned in her country home. Everyone blamed the accident on a rubber ball left on the stairs by her terrier but Emily was convinced that one of her relatives was trying to kill her.
ELEPHANTS CAN REMEMBER
Hercule Poirot is determined to solve an old husband and wife double murder that is still an open verdict. He delves back into the past and discovers that ‘old sin leave long shadows’.
EVIL UNDER THE SUN
The body of the sun-loving Arlena Stuart is found stretched out on a beach, face down. Only, on this occasion, there was no sun… she had been strangled. Hercule Poirot detected sexual tension in the seaside air. Could this apparent ‘crime of passion’ have been something more evil and premeditated altogether?
FIVE LITTLE PIGS
Hercule Poirot is asked to investigate a murder. The complication is that it took place sixteen years earlier and a woman has been convicted of the crime.
At a Hallowe’en party, thirteen-year-old Joyce boasts that she once witnessed a murder. When no-one believes her, she storms off. Within hours her body is found, drowned in an apple-bobbing tub. Hercule Poirot is called in, but first he must establish whether he is looking for a murderer or a double-murderer.
HERCULE POIROT'S CHRISTMAS
It is Christmas Eve. The Lee family reunion is shattered by a high-pitched wailing scream. Upstairs, the tyrannical Simeon Lee lies dead in a pool of blood, his throat slashed. But when Hercule Poirot, who is staying in the village with a friend for Christmas, offers to assist, he finds everyone had their own reason to hate the old man…
HICKORY DICKORY DOCK
Something is troubling Poirot's secretary, Miss Lemon. It seems an outbreak of kleptomania at the student hostel in which her sister works is distracting her. Deciding that desperate times call for desperate measures, he agrees to investigate. Unknown to Poirot, however, desperation is a motive he shares with a killer…
Hercule Poirot realises that what he at first thought was a clever hoax, is very real - there is a dead body by the swimming pool, accompanied by a hysterical woman. Poirot’s enquiries soon reveal a complex web of romantic attachments. It seems everyone in the drama is a suspect and each a victim of love.
THE LABOURS OF HERCULES
In appearance Hercule Poirot hardly resembled an ancient Greek hero. Yet like Hercules he had been responsible for ridding society of some of its most unpleasant monsters. So leading up to his retirement, Poirot makes up his mind to accept just twelve more cases: his self-imposed ‘Labours’.
LORD EDGWARE DIES
Poirot was present when Jane bragged of her plan to 'get rid' of her estranged husband. Now he is dead and Jane has a cast-iron alibi, she was dining with friends at the time and after all he had granted her a divorce, so what motive could she have?
THE MAN IN THE BROWN SUIT
Anne came to London looking for adventure. In fact, adventure finds her at Hyde Park Corner tube station. Anne is present on the platform when a man loses his balance and is electocuted on the rails. The Scotland Yard verdict is accidental death. But Anne is not satisfied. After all, who was the man in the brown suit who examined the body? And why did he race off, leaving a cryptic message behind: ‘17-122 Kilmorden Castle’?
THE MIRROR CRACK'D FROM SIDE TO SIDE
One minute, silly Heather Badcock had been gabbling on at her movie idol, the glamorous Marina Gregg. The next, Heather suffered a massive seizure. But for whom was the deadly poison really intended? Marina’s frozen expression suggested she had witnessed something horrific. But, while others searched for material evidence, Jane Marple conducted a very different investigation – into human nature
MISS MARPLE'S FINAL CASES
The collection is the final book by Agatha Christie, it includes Miss Marple Tells a Story, Strange Jest, The Tape-Measure Murder, The Case of the Caretaker, The Case of the Perfect Maid and Sanctuary.
MRS MCGINTY'S DEAD
Mrs McGinty died after a brutal blow to the head, and the only suspect is her shifty and destitute lodger, James Bentley. Bentley is duly arrested, tried and condemned to death. However the policeman who arrested him doesn't think he is a murderer...and calls in Hercule Poirot.
THE MURDER AT THE VICARAGE
Colonel Protheroe is found shot dead in Reverend Clements’ study. There are several possible suspects, which frustrates the police, but our Miss Marple just watches and waits.
MURDER IN MESOPOTAMIA
At a dig in Iraq, the wife of the celebrated archaeologist, Dr Leidner, is convinced that someone is coming to murder her. The rest of the party think she is being neurotic, but when she is discovered clubbed to death, Hercule poirot is called upon to find the murderer.
MURDER IN THE MEWS
As Inspector Japp remarked to Hercule Poirot, "Good night for a murder". It was November 5th, and the odd shot would never be noticed. Someone agreed with him: next morning young Mrs Allen was found dead in her new house. Poirot solves this and three more perplexing cases with his usual brilliance in four tales of murder most foul.
A MURDER IS ANNOUNCED
"A murder is announced and will take place on Friday, October 29th, at Little Paddocks at 6.30pm." So runs the advertisement in that day's local paper. Miss Blacklock, the owner of Little Paddocks, is not unduly surprised when, towards the appointed hour, several of her neighbours find themselves drawn to call upon her ...
THE MURDER OF ROGER ACKROYD
Roger Ackroyd knew that the woman he loved had poisoned her brutal first husband. He suspected also that someone had been blackmailing her. Now, tragically, came the news that she had taken her own life. The evening post brought Roger one last fatal scrap of information, but before he could finish the letter, he was stabbed to death…
THE MURDER ON THE LINKS
On a French golf course, a millionaire is found stabbed in the back... But why is the dead man wearing his son's overcoat? And who was the impassioned love-letter in the pocket for? Before Poirot can answer these questions, the case is turned upside down by the discovery of a second, identically murdered corpse...
MURDER ON THE ORIENT EXPRESS
Just after midnight, a snowdrift stops the Orient Express in its tracks. The luxurious train is surprisingly full for the time of the year, but by the morning it is one passenger fewer. An American tycoon lies dead in his compartment, stabbed a dozen times, his door locked from the inside. Hercule Poirot must identify the murderer – in case he or she decides to strike again.
THE MYSTERIOUS AFFAIR AT STYLES
Hercule Poirot's first murder investigation. Poirot is called in to investigate the strange events at Styles St Mary. Evelyn, companion to old Mrs Inglethorn, has left and now the air seems rife with suspicion.
THE MYSTERIOUS MR QUIN
So far, it had been a typical New Year’s Eve house party. But Mr Satterthwaite – a keen observer of human nature – sensed that the real drama of the evening was yet to unfold. So it proved when a mysterious stranger arrived after midnight. Who was this Mr Quin? And why did his presence have such a pronounced effect on Eleanor Portal, the woman with the dyed-black hair?
THE MYSTERY OF THE BLUE TRAIN
When the luxurious Blue Train arrives at Nice, a guard attempts to wake serene Ruth Kettering from her slumbers. But she will never wake again – for a heavy blow has killed her, disfiguring her features almost beyond recognition. The prime suspect is Ruth’s estranged husband, Derek. Yet Poirot is not convinced, so he stages an eerie re-enactment of the journey, complete with the murderer on board…
ORDEAL BY INNOCENCE
Two years after his death Jack Argyle is acquitted of the murder of his mother. This revelation of innocence now casts doubt upon the whole Argyle household.
THE PALE HORSE
To understand the strange goings on at The Pale Horse Inn, Mark Easterbrook knew he had to begin at the beginning. But where exactly was the beginning? Wherever the beginning lies, Mark and his sidekick, Ginger Corrigan, may soon have cause to wish they’d never found it…
PERIL AT END HOUSE
Pit Poirot against peril and you get perfection. Someone is stalking the lady of End House. She claims her only friend is a ghost. Hercule Poirot has his more earthbound theories of what's happening.
A POCKET FULL OF RYE
When Rex Fortescue suffers an agonising and sudden death in his 'Counting House', Miss Marple is convinced that this is a case of crime by rhyme.
First there was the mystery of the film star and the diamond… then came the ‘suicide’ that was murder… a suspicious death in a locked gun-room… a million dollar bond robbery… a jewel robbery by the sea… and, the mystery of the missing will. What links these fascinating cases? Only the brilliant deductive powers of Hercule Poirot!
POIROT'S EARLY CASES
Hercule Poirot turns back the clock to trace eighteen of the cases which helped establish his professional reputation. With his career still in its formative years, the panache with which Hercule Poirot could solve even the most puzzling mystery is obvious.
PROBLEM AT POLLENSA BAY
An engaging collection of three of the Queen of Crime's favourite detectives: Hercule Poirot, Parker Pyne, and Harley Quinn.
Beautiful young Elinor Carlisle stood in the dock, accused of the murder of Mary Gerrard, her rival in love. The evidence was damning: only Elinor had the motive and the means to administer the fatal poison. Yet one man still presumed Elinor was innocent until proven guilty: Hercule Poirot was all that stood between Elinor and the gallows…
THE SECRET ADVERSARY
Tommy and Tuppence embark on a daring business scheme, but their first assignment puts them in more danger than they had bargained for.
THE SECRET OF CHIMNEYS
Scotland Yard and the French Surete work together to solve the final murder at the great country estate of Chimneys and in so doing, reveal an amazing secret.
THE SEVEN DIALS MYSTERY
Seven clocks tick ominously in a suicide's room and a dying friend whose last words are "seven dials" lead dapper Jimmy Thesiger and his irrepressible girlfriend to a Soho club. There they learn of the Seven Dials Society, seven masked conspirators who meet in a secret room to talk about stealing scientific secrets - and plan the next 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.… In fear, Gwenda turned to Miss Marple to exorcise her ghosts. Between them, they were to solve a ‘perfect’ crime committed many years before.
TAKEN AT THE FLOOD
After marrying an attractive young widow, Gordon Cloade is tragically killed by a bomb blast in the London blitz. Overnight, the former Mrs Underhay finds herself in sole possession of the family fortune. Hercule Poirot receives a visit from the dead man’s sister-in-law claiming that Mrs Underhay’s first husband is alive. Poirot has his suspicions...
Three single girls shared the same London flat. One of the girls came to Poirot for help, convinced she was a murderer. Without hard evidence, it would take all Poirot’s tenacity to establish whether the third girl was guilty, innocent or insane…
THREE ACT TRAGEDY
Thirteen guests arrived at dinner at the actor’s house. It was to be a particularly unlucky evening for the Reverend Stephen Babbington, who choked on his cocktail, went into convulsions and died. But when his martini glass was sent for chemical analysis, there was no trace of poison – just as Poirot had predicted. Even more troubling for the great detective, there was absolutely no motive…
THE WITNESS FOR THE PROSECUTION
Leonard Vole is arrested for the murder of Emily French, a wealthy older woman. Unaware that he was a married man, Miss French made him her principal heir, casting suspicion on Leonard. When his wife, Romaine, agrees to testify, she does so not in Leonard's defense but as a witness for the prosecution...