Reading Lists

Read Christie 2023

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Our December book: Sleeping Murder

Our December choice: Sleeping Murder

It's the final month of Read Christie 2023 and the prompt is strangulation. We have chosen to read the Miss Marple story that was published posthumously, Sleeping Murder. What will you make of our final pick of the year? If you want us to host a book club for this story, please cast your vote below. Congratulations to all those who have joined us for a year of Methods and Motives.

What's it about?

Not long after Gwenda moves into her new home on the south coast of England, peculiar things begin happening. The wallpaper in one of the rooms just so happens to be the exact design she planned to decorate the nursery with. And then there's a creepy coincidence with a door... Her paranoia comes to a head when she goes on a trip to London to watch The Duchess of Malfi. Upon hearing the line "Cover her face. Mine eyes dazzle, she died young..." Gwenda screams out. She has a vision of seeing a man saying those very words whilst strangling a woman. Can Miss Marple make heads or tails of these mysterious circumstances?

I was back there - on the stairs, looking down on the hall through the banisters, and I saw her lying there. Sprawled out - dead.
Agatha Christie, Sleeping Murder

Alternative stories

There are several other Miss Marple stories you could read this month including A Pocket Full of Rye, A Murder is Announced, and 4.50 from Paddington which all see the female sleuth investigating murders by strangulation. Mrs McGinty's Dead is another great option. The victim's suspicious lodger is the primary suspect but he just doesn't strike Poirot as being a murderer. Perhaps the answer lies in a clipped newspaper article from two days prior to Mrs McGinty's death? Alternatively you could opt for Death Comes as the End. This is a great read for those who enjoy books inspired by Christie's interest in archaeology and murder mysteries with a high body count. Other books that fit this prompt include Evil Under the Sun, Dead Man's Folly or The Mystery of the Blue Train.

How to get involved

Once you've printed your challenge postcard, simply fill in the story you've chosen for this category and get reading! If you post about your choice on social media make sure to tag us in the photo so we can see it. Use #ReadChristie2023 on Instagram for your chance to be featured in our monthly reading round-ups. Alternatively, you can let us know via our Twitter, Facebook or Instagram which book you've chosen, in the comment sections of our posts. Some readers choose to join our end of the month book club, or incorporate it into their own book club plans. However you join us, we hope you have fun with this year's challenge.

The book club

Owing to office closures for the festive season, we will be holding December's book club a little earlier than usual. Join us at 5pm (UK time) on Friday 15th December on both Instagram and Facebook. To get involved, simply head to the comments section where we will pose live questions about our chosen book for a whole hour, and share your opinions on the novel.

Our 2023 reading choices

ACL Reading List 2023 Filled FINAL
This year's official picks for the Read Christie 2023 challenge
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Our November book: Endless Night

Our November choice: Endless Night

This month's prompt is greed and we have opted to read Endless Night. The story follows our protagonist, Michael Rogers, who is hungry for the perfect life. His determination to have it all might just blind him to the dangers afoot… In addition to greed, this story cleverly intertwines many complex themes such as love, class, and the supernatural.

What's it about?

Michael Rogers wants it all: the money, a house designed to his tastes, the perfect woman, and to climb to the top of the social ladder. So, he couldn't believe his luck when he stumbled upon the beautiful grounds of Gipsy's Acre and then met the very wealthy heiress, Ellie. Together they planned out the perfect life, but trouble soon began to emerge in paradise. Michael grows very jealous of Ellie's best friend Greta, wanting Ellie all to himself. He also fails to heed the warnings that fatal 'accidents' happen to those who lived at Gipsy's Acre. Can Michael succeed and turn his fantasy into reality? Or is he asking for too much?

All pure fantasy, all nonsense, but it started that tide of longing in me. Longing for something I was never likely to have.
Agatha Christie, Endless Night

Alternative stories

We have a few alternative recommendations for you this month. In The Sittaford Mystery a man is arrested on suspicion of murdering Captain Trevelyan after being refused a loan from him that day. You could also read A Pocket Full of Rye in which Miss Marple investigates the murder of a patriarch with somewhat questionable ethics. Another option is The ABC Murders where a serial killer, hungry to fool Hercule Poirot, sends the Belgian detective up and down the lengths of the country. You could also read Peril at End House where Nick Buckley's life is threatened multiple times. But if it's not her estate the killer is after, why is her life in danger? Alternatively, Dumb Witness is a great choice. Wealthy spinster Emily Arundell believes an attempt on her life has occurred after falling down the stairs in her stately home. Could this have anything to do with the new will she recently wrote?

How to get involved

Once you've printed your challenge postcard, simply fill in the story you've chosen for this category and get reading! If you post about your choice on social media make sure to tag us in the photo so we can see it. Use #ReadChristie2023 on Instagram for your chance to be featured in our monthly reading round-ups. Alternatively, you can let us know via our Twitter, Facebook or Instagram which book you've chosen, in the comment sections of our posts. Some readers choose to join our end of the month book club, or incorporate it into their own book club plans. However you join us, we hope you have fun with this year's challenge.

The book club

We will be hosting our November book club on Thursday 30th November at 9am and 5pm (UK time) on both Instagram and Facebook. To get involved, simply head to the comments section where we will pose live questions about our chosen book for a whole hour, and share your opinions on the novel.

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Our October book: Murder on the Orient Express

Our October choice: Murder on the Orient Express

This month's prompt is a stabbing and for this we have selected a true Christie classic, Murder on the Orient Express. To celebrate its recent release in the US, we have opted to read the graphic novel adaptation of this story by Bob Al-Greene which closely follows the original story. This is one of Christie's most famous novels; it's a locked-room mystery exploring themes of revenge, justice, and humanity. It was also inspired by a real-life case which was yet to be solved when this story was first published.

What's it about?

On board the luxurious Orient Express in the company of an eclectic group of passengers, Hercule Poirot was enjoying a small bottle of Perrier. But shortly after midnight, the train is brought to an abrupt halt by an unexpected snowdrift. This delay in his journey, however, soon becomes the least of the detective's problems as by morning, one of his fellow passengers is dead. In his cabin, locked from the inside, lies the body of millionaire Samuel Ratchett who has been stabbed a dozen times. With no one able to board or leave the train in its current condition, the murderer must be amongst them right now and it is down to Hercule Poirot to work out which one of them is the culprit before they strike again. Could it be the loyal secretary MacQueen, flamboyant actress, Mrs Hubbard, or perhaps the Russian princess Dragomiroff?

My life has been threatened, Mr. Poirot, I have reason to believe I'm in danger.
Bob Al-Greene, Murder on the Orient Express: The Graphic Novel

Alternative Stories

The Murder of Roger Ackroyd is another story that fits this prompt perfectly. Roger Ackroyd was a man who knew too much and he was about to discover the identity of a blackmailer. But before he could finish the informative letter, he was fatally stabbed through the neck. Alternatively, you could select Lord Edgware Dies. Jane brags of her plan to get rid of her husband whilst in the presence of Hercule Poirot. But when the man winds up dead, stabbed in his library, his wife has an unbreakable alibi. If you fancied reading one of Christie's more adventurous novels, you might want to opt for The Man in the Brown Suit. Anne Beddingfeld witnesses a man falling off an underground platform and being electrocuted on the rails. Was it an accident, or was the man in the brown suit who examined the body before running away somehow involved? Other stories that also fit this prompt include Third Girl and Hallowe'en Party.

How to get involved

Once you've printed your challenge postcard, simply fill in the story you've chosen for this category and get reading! If you post about your choice on social media make sure to tag us in the photo so we can see it. Use #ReadChristie2023 on Instagram for your chance to be featured in our monthly reading round-ups. Alternatively, you can let us know via our Twitter, Facebook or Instagram which book you've chosen, in the comment sections of our posts. Some readers choose to join our end of the month book club, or incorporate it into their own book club plans. However you join us, we hope you have fun with this year's challenge.

The book club

We will be hosting our October book club on Thursday 26th October at 9am and 5pm (UK time) on both Instagram and Facebook. To get involved, simply head to the comments section where we will pose live questions about our chosen book for a whole hour, and share your opinions on the novel.

NB. Our murder methods are quite straightforward and often referenced in the title, eg. Sparkling Cyanide, so this doesn't spoil the story for readers who are new to the book. The murder motives are not necessarily why the murder has taken place in the novel, but are a key theme (or motivation) throughout the story. This way we are able to discuss character motives, without too many spoilers.

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Our September book: Appointment with Death

Our September choice: Appointment with Death

The prompt for this month's book is hatred, a passion that is rife in Appointment with Death. Mrs Boynton, the victim in this story, joins the ranks of Christie's unlikeable characters, and could arguably be the most despised as her whole family struggle to tolerate her. But with so many suspects holding such intense grudges against the old lady, Poirot has his work cut out uncovering the truth about who really killed her and why.

What's it about?

One evening among the towering red cliffs of Petra, the corpse of Mrs Boynton is discovered. A tiny puncture mark on her wrist was the only indication of foul play. Well, that and a chance remark overheard by Poirot on his first night in Jerusalem: "You do see, don't you, that she's got to be killed?". The Belgian detective is challenged to conclude the case in just 24 hours, but with such an execrable victim, he is not short of suspects. After all, Mrs Boynton was the most detestable woman he had ever met...

...-here we are calmly planning, in cold blood, to kill our own mother!
Agatha Christie, Appointment with Death

Alternative Stories

Another choice for this month is Peril at End House. Poirot is challenged to solve the several near-misses on pretty Nick Buckley's life before a fatal strike occurs. Alternatively, you could opt for Dumb Witness in which a terrier is blamed for Emily Arundell's accident. However, Emily fears that one of her relatives is trying to kill her. By the time Poirot hears of these suspicions, the poor woman is dead. Crooked House is also an excellent choice for the prompt of hatred. The Leonides live together in a ramshackle mansion...until the head of the family is murdered by a barbiturate injection. Other options also include Murder is Easy, Five Little Pigs, and Hercule Poirot's Christmas.

How to get involved

Once you've printed your challenge postcard, simply fill in the story you've chosen for this category and get reading! If you post about your choice on social media make sure to tag us in the photo so we can see it. Use #ReadChristie2023 on Instagram for your chance to be featured in our monthly reading round-ups. Alternatively, you can let us know via our Twitter, Facebook or Instagram which book you've chosen, in the comment sections of our posts. Some readers choose to join our end of the month book club, or incorporate it into their own book club plans. However you join us, we hope you have fun with this year's challenge.

The book club

We will be hosting our September book club on Thursday 28th September at 9am and 5pm (UK time) on both Instagram and Facebook. To get involved, simply head to the comments section where we will pose live questions about our chosen book for a whole hour, and share your opinions on the novel.

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Our August book: Death Comes as the End

Our August choice: Death Comes as the End

This month's prompt is a fall from a height and we have chosen to read Death Comes as the End. Set in Egypt in the year 2000 BC, this is Christie's only historical novel making it one of her most unique stories. Despite its alternative setting, several of Christie's classic trademarks feature, such as a dysfunctional family, an overbearing family patriarch, and an unlikeable victim. Whilst historic in its time period, a classic murder mystery lies at the heart of the story.

What's it about?

The lives of an Egyptian family are upended when the Ka-priest returns home from the north with a beautiful yet venomous concubine, Nofret. Insistent on antagonising her new family, Nofret is instantly hated by those around her. So much so that when her body is found twisted and broken at the foot of a cliff, her new family claim it was the fate she deserved. However the Ka-priest's daughter, Renisenb, isn't convinced that Nofret's death was a mere accident, but an act of evil from a member of her own family. As she tries to uncover the truth, Renisenb must watch on helplessly as her family's dynamics implode.

Nofret stood quite still. There was a faint smile on her lips - it had more derision in it than any to please.
Agatha Christie, Death Comes as the End

Alternative Stories

If you're after a more classic Christie story, you might like to read Why Didn't They Ask Evans? When playing golf on the cliffs of Marchbolt, Bobby Jones heard a scream. Crumpled on the rocks over the clifftop lay a man's body. His final words were: "Why didn't they ask Evans?". Third Girl is another great option for this prompt. Three girls share a flat in London; one is a secretary, another is an artist and the third disappears right after informing Hercule Poirot that she is a murderer. Alternatively, you might like to delve into a short story collection for which Parker Pyne Investigates is perfect. Join Christie's most unconventional detective who solves crimes of both the heart and the law. Other options for this month include the standalone story, Endless Night and the Hercule Poirot mystery, Elephants Can Remember.

How to get involved

Once you've printed your challenge postcard, simply fill in the story you've chosen for this category and get reading! If you post about your choice on social media make sure to tag us in the photo so we can see it. Use #ReadChristie2023 on Instagram for your chance to be featured in our monthly reading round-ups. Alternatively, you can let us know via our Twitter, Facebook or Instagram which book you've chosen, in the comment sections of our posts. Some readers choose to join our end of the month book club, or incorporate it into their own book club plans. However you join us, we hope you have fun with this year's challenge.

The book club

This month Magdalena (@triple_l_de_mag on Instagram) will be hosting the book club on Thursday 31st August at 5pm (UK time). This will be live on our Instagram stories and will be conducted in French.

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Our July book: Evil Under the Sun

Our July choice: Evil Under the Sun

This month is all about love (of the dangerous, even deadly kind) and we are reading Evil Under the Sun. The story explores love in a variety of forms from devilish love triangles, aggrieved familial relationships, and former lovers, giving us ample room to delve into July's theme. With all these secrets and family disputes, it's easy to see why love was a motivator to kill Arlena Stuart.

What's it about?

Relaxing in his deck chair, panama hat shading his face from the August sun, nothing could disturb Hercule Poirot's summer holiday on an island just off the English coast. But the summer sun doesn't deter evil. Arlena Stuart, a young beautiful woman capable of turning heads wherever she ventured, was found lying on the beach, strangled to death. But this island is not easily accessible meaning it must be one of the guests who murdered her. Was it Arlena's new husband? Her resentful step-daughter? Her secret love? Or one of the other guests staying on the island? After all, everyone had a motive to kill Arlena.

It is peaceful. The sun shines. The sea is blue. But you forget, Miss Brewster, there is evil everywhere under the sun.
Agatha Christie, Evil Under the Sun

Alternative Stories

The Hollow is another Hercule Poirot mystery that suits the theme of love perfectly. In this story, Poirot is greeted at a house by a man lying dead by a pool, his wife standing over him holding a revolver. Or, you might prefer to opt for a Miss Marple story this month. The Body in the Library is an excellent choice and A Caribbean Mystery is perfect for those seeking an escape to a tropical climate. If you are interested in reading a short story collection, we recommend The Mysterious Mr Quin or Midsummer Mysteries. Alternatively, you might like to read one of Christie's standalone novels. They Came to Baghdad follows Victoria Jones, a young woman yearning for love and adventure who becomes ensnared in a case of dangerous espionage.

How to get involved

Once you've printed your challenge postcard, simply fill in the story you've chosen for this category and get reading! If you post about your choice on social media make sure to tag us in the photo so we can see it. Use #ReadChristie2023 on Instagram for your chance to be featured in our monthly reading round-ups. Alternatively, you can let us know via our Twitter, Facebook or Instagram which book you've chosen, in the comment sections of our posts. Some readers choose to join our end of the month book club, or incorporate it into their own book club plans. However you join us, we hope you have fun with this year's challenge.

The book club

This month bloggers and Christie fans Aisha (@pagesandcup) and Steph (@bookishsteph1), hosts of Maidens of Murder, will be hosting the book club on Thursday 27th July at 5pm (UK time) on both Instagram and Facebook. Stay tuned on our social channels in June for how to take part.

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Our June book: They Do It With Mirrors

Our June choice: They Do It With Mirrors

They Do It With Mirrors is our official book choice this month. It is a Miss Marple story featuring Jane's old school friends, mysterious characters and our theme for the month, a gunshot. Whilst Christie acknowledged she was less confident in her knowledge of ballistics in comparison to some of her other methods of murder (such as poison), guns did still feature prominently across her works, resulting in 42 deaths by this method.

What's it about?

An unsettling feeling shrouds Stoneygates, a correctional facility, and Ruth Van Rydock can't shake the feeling that something sinister is threatening her sister's life. Ruth decides to confide in her old school friend, Jane Marple, in the hopes that she can keep a close eye on Carrie Louise and uncover what's really going on. As suspected, something untoward is lurking inside of Stoneygates. When someone shoots at the facility's administrator he walks away uninjured, however, a business associate in another room of the building is less fortunate. Is it just pure coincidence or the work of a cunning murderer?

There is such a thing as evil - and I want you, Jane, to go down there right away and find out exactly what's the matter.
Agatha Christie, They Do It With Mirrors

Alternative Stories

If you're looking for an alternative mystery featuring our favourite female sleuth, At Bertram's Hotel is a great option. Miss Marple takes a holiday in an other-worldly, London hotel, but there's an unmistakable sense of danger lurking behind every door. For fans of Christie's espionage stories, N or M? is another great choice. In this book, Tommy and Tuppence are appointed a dangerous mission in the midst of World War Two. The Secret of Chimneys also fits this month's prompt and features a country house, an international conspiracy and deadly secrets. Or, if you would rather read a classic Hercule Poirot mystery, we recommend Cards on the Table, One, Two, Buckle My Shoe and The Hollow.

How to get involved

Once you've printed your challenge postcard, simply fill in the story you've chosen for this category and get reading! If you post about your choice on social media make sure to tag us in the photo so we can see it. Use #ReadChristie2023 on Instagram for your chance to be featured in our monthly reading round-ups. Alternatively, you can let us know via our Twitter, Facebook or Instagram which book you've chosen, in the comment sections of our posts. Some readers choose to join our end of the month book club, or incorporate it into their own book club plans. However you join us, we hope you have fun with this year's challenge.

The book club

This month Italian bloggers and Christie super fans Radical Ging (Davide and Marco) (@radicalging) will be hosting the book club on Thursday 29th June at 5pm (UK time) on both Instagram and Facebook. Stay tuned on our social channels in June for how to take part.

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Our May book: Unfinished Portrait

Our May choice: Unfinished Portrait

For the theme of betrayal we have opted for Unfinished Portrait, the second of the stories Christie wrote under the pseudonym, Mary Westmacott. Considered to be semi-autobiographical, this novel explores the relationship between love and death so allows us to explore the topic of betrayal from a variety of different angles. The protagonist of the story, Celia, was described by Christie's husband, Max, as "more nearly than anywhere else a portrait of Agatha".

What's it about?

Having lost three of the people she held most dear - her mother, husband and daughter - Celia has reached breaking point and isn't sure how to navigate life alone. But one evening on an exotic island, Celia encounters a successful portrait painter called Larraby. Upon meeting, Celia shares with him the highs and lows of her life, through childhood, marriage, motherhood, and grief, right up to the present day. Larraby takes it upon himself to try and help Celia come to terms with the past whilst creating a portrait unlike any other he has created before. This is a story of love, loss and betrayal, and explores how one begins to rebuild a life after tragedy.

Grief doesn't last forever. Nothing lasts. There is only one true consoler and healer - time.
Agatha Christie, Unfinished Portrait

Alternative Stories

If you would rather read one of Christie's classic crimes this month, Death on the Nile is a great alternative. A sweeping mystery of love, jealousy and betrayal, a tranquil river cruise is upturned when the beautiful Linnet Ridgeway is found dead, shot through the head. Another option is Towards Zero, the last in the Superintendent Battle stories. In this novel an elderly widow is murdered at a clifftop seaside house, but that's not the only suspicious activity that's taken place. But what connects all the seemingly unrelated events? You could also opt for Evil Under the Sun and They Do It With Mirrors is the perfect choice for fans of Miss Marple looking for a cunning and mysterious story.

How to get involved

Once you've printed your challenge postcard, simply fill in the story you've chosen for this category and get reading! If you post about your choice on social media make sure to tag us in the photo so we can see it. Use #ReadChristie2023 on Instagram for your chance to be featured in our monthly reading round-ups. Alternatively, you can let us know via our Twitter, Facebook or Instagram which book you've chosen, in the comment sections of our posts. Some readers choose to join our end of the month book club, or incorporate it into their own book club plans. However you join us, we hope you have fun with this year's challenge.

The book club

We will be hosting our May book club on Thursday 25th May at 9am and 5pm (UK time) on both Instagram and Facebook. To get involved, simply head to the comments section where we will pose live questions about our chosen book for a whole hour, and share your opinions on the novel.

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Our April Book: Sparkling Cyanide

Our April choice: Sparkling Cyanide

Poison is our focus for April and we have selected Sparkling Cyanide as our official choice. Cyanide was Christie's most popular poison, opting to use it as the method of murder for no less than 18 characters across her stories. Christie was renowned for her impeccable knowledge of poison administration and side effects which she learnt from her time working in a pharmaceutical dispensary. She used this knowledge to inform her intricate murders and character demises and this story is no exception.

What's it about?

This murder in retrospect begins with each character reflecting on the life and death of Rosemary Barton who took a sip of poisoned champagne at dinner in the heart of London's West End nearly a year ago. The coroner declared the death as suicide following a bout of post-flu depression, but an anonymous letter to her husband, George, implies she was in fact murdered. George is on a mission to expose his wife's murderer so invites the original party of guests to dinner, at the same table, in the same restaurant, exactly one year after Rosemary's passing. But there are only six people sitting down to dinner this evening, so why is there a seventh place set? Is this gathering just encouraging history to repeat itself?

Sandra Farraday had not forgotten Rosemary Barton. She was thinking of her this very minute - thinking of her slumped forward across the table in the restaurant that night.
Agatha Christie, Sparkling Cyanide

Alternative Stories

With over 40 books featuring poison, we are spoiled for choice this month so we have hand-selected a few favourites to recommend. Crooked House is another standalone novel and one of Christie's personal favourites. When a wealthy Greek businessman is found dead in his London home, suspicions quickly fall on the dead man's widow. But she's not the only member of the family who could benefit from his demise. Or, you could opt to go back to the beginning and read Christie's first novel, The Mysterious Affair at Styles in which Hastings' friend's mother is found poisoned and Poirot is called on to solve the case. Another Hercule Poirot book perfect for the theme of poison is Death in the Clouds which plays on the classic locked room mystery technique. From his seat on the aeroplane, Poirot has a great view of his fellow passengers - except for the seat behind him where the lifeless body of a woman is slumped. If you would rather opt for a Miss Marple mystery, both A Pocket Full of Rye and The Mirror Crack'd from Side to Side are excellent choices for April.

How to get involved

Once you've printed your challenge postcard, simply fill in the story you've chosen for this category and get reading! If you post about your choice on social media make sure to tag us in the photo so we can see it. Use #ReadChristie2023 on Instagram for your chance to be featured in our monthly reading round-ups. Alternatively, you can let us know via our Twitter, Facebook or Instagram which book you've chosen, in the comment sections of our posts. Some readers choose to join our end of the month book club, or incorporate it into their own book club plans. However you join us, we hope you have fun with this year's challenge.

The book club

We will be hosting our April book club on Thursday 27th April at 9am and 5pm (UK time) on both Instagram and Facebook. To get involved, simply head to the comments section where we will pose live questions about our chosen book for a whole hour, and share your opinions on the novel.

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Our March book: The Moving Finger

Our March choice: The Moving Finger

This month's theme is anger and The Moving Finger is our official book choice. The poison pen letter provides ample opportunity to explore themes of cruelty and spite. The ire explored in the work is often shown by the letters recipients too. Traditionally considered a "woman's weapon" in the past, will this case prove infuriating for the female sleuth to solve?

What's it about?

Injured pilot Jerry, and his sister Joanna, are seeking respite from the city in Lymstock. They are looking forward to a quiet life of village gossip and local politics, but then they receive a particularly nasty anonymous letter. Does the poison pen writer resent their arrival in the village? Or is there a wider, more spiteful purpose to their correspondence? Fear dominates the residents and it is not long before the letters have fatal consequences. Miss Marple must use her shrewd observations of human nature to uncover the true identity of the culprit before it's too late.

Inside, printed words and letters had been cut out and gummed to a sheet of paper. For a minute or two I stared at the words without taking them in. Then I gasped.
Agatha Christie, The Moving Finger

Alternative Stories

If you're after a different novel for the theme of anger, we have a few alternative suggestions. Murder is Easy is a great choice and it has just been announced as the latest BBC One TV adaptation (find out more here). When Miss Pinkerton informs Luke Fitzwilliam that there is a murderer on the loose in the quiet village of Wychwood, he can hardly believe his ears. But when Miss Pinkerton is killed in a hit-and-run it soon becomes apparent that she was in fact, correct. Another book you could opt for is Taken at the Flood - Hercule Poirot is tasked with finding a missing person, guided only by the spirit world. Or you could choose to read Poirot's final case, Curtain. Back at the country lodge, Styles, Poirot is certain there is a five-time murderer in their midst. His time is limited so Poirot must work quickly to prevent a sixth murder from happening.

How to get involved

Once you've printed your challenge postcard, simply fill in the story you've chosen for this category and get reading! If you post about your choice on social media make sure to tag us in the photo so we can see it. Use #ReadChristie2023 on Instagram for your chance to be featured in our monthly reading round-ups. Alternatively, you can let us know via our Twitter, Facebook or Instagram which book you've chosen, in the comment sections of our posts. Some readers choose to join our end of the month book club, or incorporate it into their own book club plans. However you join us, we hope you have fun with this year's challenge.

The book club

We will be hosting our March book club on Thursday 30th March at 9am and 5pm (UK time) on both Instagram and Facebook. To get involved, simply head to the comments section where we will pose live questions about our chosen book for a whole hour, and share your opinions on the novel.

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Our February book: Partners in Crime

Our February choice: Partners in Crime

February's prompt is a murder method - the use of a blunt object. Partners in Crime is a collection of short stories published in 1929, and is the second book in the Tommy and Tuppence series. Each of these short stories contain subtle parodies of a contemporary crime writer [or character] from the Golden Age of detective stories. How many can you spot?

What's it about?

They've been happily married for six years and now Tommy and Tuppence Beresford are craving adventure. It just so happens that Mr Carter has a proposition they simply can't refuse - the opportunity to run an International Detective Agency. Their first case is deemed a success when they triumphantly recover a pink pearl, but not all of their cases will be quite so simple. From a cryptic message printed in a newspaper and a box of poisoned chocolates, to haunting poltergeists and a counterfeiter working on both sides of the Channel, can Tommy and Tuppence live up to their their promise of solving all cases within 24 hours?

'We will hunt down murderers, and discover the missing family jewels, and find people who've disappeared and detect embezzlers.'
Agatha Christie, Partners in Crime

Alternative Stories

We have plenty of alternative books this month if Partners in Crime isn't your cup of tea. Ordeal by Innocence is a great choice for this month and is the perfect pick if you a love a murder mystery full of deceit and suspicion. Another option is The Sittaford Mystery in which the death of Captain Trevelyan is discovered when spirits send a chilling message during a séance. Or perhaps you would prefer to read a novel with the famous Hercule Poirot? For this we can recommend Hickory Dickory Dock. A seemingly unrelated collection of stolen and vandalized items at a student hostel piques Poirot's interest. But if this crime is merely petty theft, why is everyone so frightened? Mrs McGinty's Dead, Murder in Mesopotamia and The Pale Horse are also great options for this month's prompt too.

How to get involved

Once you've printed your challenge postcard, simply fill in the story you've chosen for this category and get reading! If you post about your choice on social media make sure to tag us in the photo so we can see it. Use #ReadChristie2023 on Instagram for your chance to be featured in our monthly reading round-ups. Alternatively, you can let us know via our Twitter, Facebook or Instagram which book you've chosen, in the comment sections of our posts. Some readers choose to join our end of the month book club, or incorporate it into their own book club plans. However you join us, we hope you have fun with this year's challenge.

The book club

We will be hosting our February book club on Thursday 23rd February at 9am and 5pm (UK time) on both Instagram and Facebook. To get involved, simply head to the comments section where we will pose live questions about our chosen book for a whole hour, and share your opinions on the novel.

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Our January book: Sad Cypress

Our January choice: Sad Cypress

Our very first prompt of 2023 is a book featuring jealousy and for this, we have selected Sad Cypress which was published in 1939. The novel is split into three sections: firstly, the build up to the murder, secondly, Hercule Poirot's investigation, and finally the court case itself and the unveiling of the truth.

What's it about?

Elinor Carlisle has been charged with the murder of Mary Gerrard, her rival in love. Only she had the motive, opportunity, and means to administer the fatal poison, but someone is adamant that Miss Carlisle did not commit the crime and has asked Hercule Poirot to prove her innocence. Is it possible that someone else is responsible or is the defendant guilty after all?

'Elinor Carlisle killed Mary Gerrard out of jealousy…'
Agatha Christie, Sad Cypress

Alternative Stories

Jealousy is a popular theme within Agatha Christie's novels so there are plenty of other books to choose from if you don't fancy reading Sad Cypress. You could select a firm favourite of Christie fans to start the year and read Death on the Nile which features a love triangle, bound by jealousy. Cards on the Table is another excellent choice for this month; a flamboyant party host is murdered in full view when a seemingly innocent game of bridge turns deadly. Other Poirot novels you may also like to opt for include Five Little Pigs, The Murder on the Links, Murder in Mesopotamia and Elephants Can Remember. If you'd prefer to start with a Miss Marple novel we recommend The Mirror Crack'd from Side to Side. Looking for a standalone story? Towards Zero suits this category too.

How to get involved

Once you've printed your challenge postcard, simply fill in the story you've chosen for this category and get reading! If you post about your choice on social media make sure to tag us in the photo so we can see it. Use #ReadChristie2023 on Instagram for your chance to be featured in our monthly reading round-ups. Alternatively, you can let us know via our Twitter, Facebook or Instagram which book you've chosen, in the comment sections of our posts. Some readers choose to join our end of the month book club, or incorporate it into their own book club plans. However you join us, we hope you have fun with this year's challenge.

The book club

We will be hosting our first book club of the year on Thursday 26th January at 9am and 5pm (UK time) on both Instagram and Facebook. To get involved, simply head to the comments section where we will pose live questions about our chosen book for a whole hour, and share your opinions on the novel.

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