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Styles: Poirot's First and Last Cases by Agatha Christie

12th September 2016

Marking 100 years since Agatha Christie wrote The Mysterious Affair at Styles, this special edition brings together Christie's first Poirot novel with her last, and includes new cover paintings by Tom Adams and a unique letter from Hercule Poirot himself, which has never before published in the UK.

Both books feature brand new cover paintings by Tom Adams, who has painted more than a hundred covers for Agatha Christie’s novels, dating back to 1962 when he was asked to paint the cover for A Murder is Announced. Despite this, Adams never had the chance to paint covers for The Mysterious Affair at Styles or Curtain, until now.

The letter is from Hercule Poirot to M. Dodd (Agatha Christie's former American publisher) and contains Poirot's answers to questions including what his technique is for solving a crime and what his first case was. On the first page of the seven page letter it reads, 'So you think the Americans will be interested in reading about Hercule Poirot? I, who undoubtedly have the finest brain in Europe - do you not know that above all things I have a fear of publicity? But it is well that you sent me in your letter a list of questions and these I am answering in the same order.' Among other questions, the letter holds Poirot's answer to how he would be recognised in a crowd. He explains, 'I have none of those theatrical peculiarities which distinguish the detectives in story books. I myself am quite cosmopolitan. True, I have my little prejudices. Anything in the least crooked or disorderly is a torment to me.'

The limited edition box set also features Agatha Christie's original unpublished courtroom ending to The Mysterious Affair at Styles, introduced by Christie expert Dr John Curran, and a newly discovered article by Agatha Christie from 1941 in which she reminisces about the inspiration for her first book.

Buy the collection here.