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Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Audiobook Review: Agatha Christie: An Autobiography by Agatha Christie

Back in print in an all-new edition is the engaging and illuminating chronicle of the life of the "Queen of Mystery". Fans of Hercule Poirot and Miss Marple and readers of John Curran’s fascinating biographies Agatha Christie’s Secret Notebooks and Murder in the Making will be spellbound by the compelling, authoritative account of one of the world’s most influential and fascinating novelists, told in her own words and inimitable style - and here in her own voice. These audio excerpts were dictated by Agatha Christie herself.[summary via Audible]

Audible has an autobiography of Agatha Christie, actually narrated by the Queen of Crime herself. This seems to be a hidden gem amongst the Audible shelves. While there are plenty of biographies, and even an autobiography, about Agatha Christie, this is the only one narrated by herself.

This recording was recorded late into her career. No date is actually given as to when it was recorded, but she mentions quite a few of her books and I would think it was done in the 1960's or 1970's. A warning to those do listen: it is very static-y and there is a somewhat hissing sound, but this is Agatha Christie talking about her life. To hear the Queen of Crime talking about writing and her life is far more important than hearing quality.

Agatha lived a fascinating life and I loved listening to every second of this fascinating recording. She talks about how it took a long time for her to consider her profession that of a writer, and in fact she quite often wrote "married woman" on documents rather than writer. She talks about her mother-in-law telling her write something "worthwhile" and her success at writing, and why she wrote the romances under the name Mary Westmacott.

She doesn't talk about her disappearance. I assumed she wouldn't, but of course one can only hope that she might touch on it.

I particularly enjoyed hearing her talk about The Mousetrap, which originally written for the Queen, and she talks about how she believed it would only run for 8 months. Well it is now the longest running play and still going strong!

For fans of her books this is a insightful account of her life in her opinion and it delighted me immensely. I plan to listen to it again at a later date.

It is currently free for Audible and can be found at their website.

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