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Thirteen facts about The Thirteen Problems

13th May 2016

On Friday the 13th we bring you 13 facts about May's Book of the Month, The Thirteen Problems.

1) These were the earliest stories to feature one of Christie’s most famous creations, Miss Marple.

2) Miss Marple’s very first appearance was in short story The Tuesday Night Club which was released in the UK in The Royal Magazine in December 1927.

3) The first six stories from the collection initially appeared in fiction magazine The Royal Magazine between 1927-1928. It wasn’t until 1932 that all 13 stories were published in a collection as The Thirteen Problems.

4) When the collection was first published in the US, it was published under the title The Tuesday Night Murders.

5) The first known image of Miss Marple appeared in The Royal Magazine in December 1927.

6) The original dustjacket blurb read, ‘Each story is a little masterpiece of detection, clever and ingenious, with just that added twist that only Agatha Christie can give.’

7) The collection was dedicated to Leonard and Katherine Woolley. Leonard was a famous British archaeologist who Agatha Christie met in Ur.

8) In 1932 the Daily Mirror reviewed The Thirteen Problems stating, ‘The plots are so good that one marvels at the prodigality which has been displayed, as most of them would have made a full-length thriller.’

9) The story line in the 8th story, The Companion, was reworked and expanded to form the basis of the full length novel, A Murder is Announced, which was released in 1950.

10) Short story, The Blue Geranium, was adapted for the fifth series of Agatha Christie’s Marple. The episode starred Julia McKenzie first aired in June 2010.

11) In The Tuesday Night Club, Raymond’s future spouse is called Joyce, but in later Miss Marple stories she is renamed as Joan.

12) Some elements from short story The Herb of Death were woven into Agatha Christie’s Marple adaptation of The Secret of Chimneys .

13) Tom Adams designed the Fontana cover for The Thirteen Problems. The artist would go on to design covers for Christie’s paperbacks for approximately twenty years.