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An Autobiography

4.26  ·  Rating Details ·  4,066 Ratings  ·  385 Reviews
Autobiography
Paperback, 560 pages
Published January 2nd 2001 by HarperCollins (first published 1977)
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Luann
Dec 28, 2008 Luann rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Luann by: Mitzie from the Pick-a-Shelf group
If you sat down with Agatha Christie and asked her about her life, this book would be the story she would tell. It is very conversational in tone. I found some parts to be extremely fascinating, and other parts only mildly interesting - especially in the beginning. I was very interested in the parts where she talked about her writing, how she got the ideas for many of her books, and how she felt about them. She had written many, many books before she ever thought of herself as a real author. I'v ...more
BrokenTune
Aug 27, 2015 BrokenTune rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: reviewed
"Towards the beginning of the war, Graham Greene had written to me and asked if I would like to do propaganda work. I did not think I was the kind of writer who would be any good at propaganda, because I lacked the single-mindedness to see only one side of the case. Nothing could be more ineffectual than a lukewarm propagandist. You want to be able to say ‘X is black as night’ and feel it. I didn’t think I could ever be like that."

Dame Agatha - one of the most puzzling authors I have ever read.
...more
Olivier Delaye
Dec 19, 2013 Olivier Delaye rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
What a long, long book… which, when you think about it, only stands to reason as it is, after all, the autobiography of Dame Agatha Christie who lived to be 85. The reason why it took me so long to read it is because while many passages are really engrossing and revealing as to how she came up with her ideas and ended up being the number one best-selling author of all time (more than a billion copies of her books sold worldwide, and still counting!), other parts and sometimes entire sections are ...more
Leena
Jan 23, 2010 Leena rated it it was amazing
I felt as if I'd dropped in for afternoon tea with Dame Agatha! I simply couldn't put this book down. To my mind this is Agatha Christie's most absorbing work ... the story of her own fascinating and unconventional life which gently unfolds to the reader complemented by her subtle, dry wit. She covers so much in this work: an idyllic Victorian childhood, youthful romances, dashed aspirations to be an opera singer or a classical pianist, two marriages the first of which ended in divorce, her daug ...more
Cassandra
Dec 23, 2014 Cassandra rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Wer kennt den Namen Agatha Christie nicht? Sie war die Meisterin des englischen Krimis, ihre Bücher haben sich überall in der Welt verkauft und haben sie zu einer der meistgelesenen Schriftstellern gemacht. Mit Miss Marple und Hercule Poirot hat sie Detektive geschaffen, die schon lange Kultstatus erreicht haben. Ihr Bühnenstück ‚Die Mausefalle‘, wird jeden Tag im Londoner West End seit 1952 aufgeführt. Ob ‚Tod auf dem Nil‘, ‚Mord im Orient-Express‘ oder ‚Zeugin der Anklage‘, viele ihre Werke wu ...more
Nathan
Sep 07, 2011 Nathan rated it really liked it
Shelves: auto-biography
Never a great fan of Agatha Christie's works, I was surprised to enjoy her autobiography. I'm not sure what I expected--perhaps an improbably boring story about her swanning around London society and then a great reveal at the end where it turned out her twin sister had written the novels? I didn't get that: Christie was awkward in public, enjoyed travel and archaeology (marrying the great archaeologist of Nineveh and Mosul, Max Mallowan), and was a keen observer of people and society.

Her memoi
...more
Claire
Apr 27, 2010 Claire rated it it was amazing
I have read books about Agatha Christie and so was delighted when I found this in my local second hand bookshop. It's great to hear her life (or parts of her life) in her own words, and she does have a wonderful way of describing things that really does bring it all to life. I liked especially when she talks about her early life, and the morals, standards and ideas of the time (eg swimming costumes, cars, planes, etc).

It is a shame that she doesn't talk about her disappearance, but I suppose she
...more
Jennifer Rayment
Nov 18, 2011 Jennifer Rayment rated it it was amazing
The Good Stuff

Delightful charming read
Fascinating stories of Agatha's life
Learned so much about life during the war in England
Interesting historical information
Enjoyed the chapter where Agatha talks about the production of going swimming as a girl and a women in Victorian England
Very wise and accurate observations of life
Was actually quite surprised how intriguing of a read it was, had a hard time putting it down on a couple of occasions
Absolutley flabergasted that she really never had an
...more
Célia
Antes de mais, acho que me posso considerar fã de Agatha Christie, apesar de ainda me faltarem muitos livros para poder dizer que li a maioria da sua obra. Agatha é a escritora mais vendida e traduzida de sempre e acho fantástico termos oportunidade de conhecer a vida dela através das suas próprias palavras. Isto tem prós e contras: se, por um lado, só ela poderia explicar ao leitor a importância que determinados acontecimentos tiveram na sua vida e nos dá uma visão muito particular sobre os mes ...more
Joanna
In the world of modern autobiography, it often seems that many memoirs are written by good writers who have had nothing much happen to them, or by people who've lived very interesting lives but have no particular talent for writing about them. This book is a wonderful journey to the days when writing your memoirs was a task reserved for a late life reflection on all you've accomplished, and Agatha Christie (even sans detectives) can certainly spin a good story.

This book was written in 1965, when
...more
MTK
Apr 05, 2017 MTK rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Για θαυμαστές της Αγκάθα Κρίστι, επιβάλλεται να διαβάσουν την αυτοβιογραφία της. Εκτός του ότι έζησε μια πολύ ενδιαφέρουσα ζωή, εάν μετά ξαναδιαβάσεις τα αστυνομικά της μυθιστορήματα, ανακαλύπτεις επιπλέον διαστάσεις στους χαρακτήρες και τις καταστάσεις.
Marietta Livada
Apr 20, 2015 Marietta Livada rated it it was amazing
Αγαπημένη Agatha, λατρευω όλα τα βιβλια της. Αυτό ηταν το καλύτερο της νομίζω, γράφει με απλότητα και χιούμορ για την συναρπαστική ζωή που έζησε.
Debra Hewitt
May 21, 2012 Debra Hewitt rated it really liked it
Reading Agatha Christie's memoir was like dropping in for tea and cozy chats with a dear friend, chats full of humor, philosophy and meandering reminiscences. I started the book with some mild curiosity about her life and career, but over the course of the five months I spent reading it interspersed with other books, my admiration for the author grew. In the end, I felt real affection for her. And I gained a better perspective on the tremendous changes that took place in the world during her lif ...more
Hellen
Jun 19, 2013 Hellen rated it liked it
A lovely autobiography by Agatha Christie. The same way of writing I enjoy so much in her detective stories, even though I can't exactly pinpoint what it is. Perhaps a sort of elegance of simplicity and a slightly more classic English? At least it makes me feel all warm and cozy inside.

I had hoped she would write more about her books and writing, even though her life in Victorian times is quite interesting too. There's little tidbits of information about her stories here and there. I was slightl
...more
rabbitprincess
Sep 16, 2011 rabbitprincess rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Christie fans
Recommended to rabbitprincess by: Ray
* * * * 1/2

For those who have wondered what the "Queen of Crime" was really like, this autobiography ought to give you a pretty good idea. It was first started in the 1950s and continued until about 1975, written in a rough chronological order but by no means a scholarly account. Christie herself likened it to a "lucky dip", where she would dip her hand in and see what memories she dredged up.

Agatha’s personality fairly leaps from the page. I admire her resilience in the face of adversity, her a
...more
Molly Black
Jun 21, 2009 Molly Black rated it it was amazing
Once again a diamond found via swapping. This book is not only excellently written, it's also (unfortunately, in my eyes) very carefully written so as to keep a lot of the negative truths hidden.



She ignores completely her disappearance and the fact that BOTH her husbands not only cheated on her, but did so multiple times. These are three major life affecting things she either glosses over or completely ignores when she had the opportunity to discuss how these things affected her life, her feelin
...more
Lyimee Saikia
Jul 24, 2014 Lyimee Saikia rated it really liked it
Agatha Christie had always left me engrossed with the many mysteries and adventures of Miss Marple and Poirot. I remember reading Sidney Sheldon's autobiography and exclaiming how much it resembled the style he chose for his fiction; his life seemed like a roller coaster ride with sudden turns that could only be expected out of a fictional thriller plot.

Picking up Christie's autobiography with the same expectations, of course I was left slightly taken aback by how vastly different hers was from
...more
Karen McQuestion
May 10, 2013 Karen McQuestion rated it liked it
Despite the fact that this was beautfully written and chock full of details about a fascinating life, I can only give it 3 stars. There were almost too many details for my taste especially about her childhood, for which she had a very good memory. I was most interested about Christie's writing life and these portions were few and far between. I did learn that she was hesitant to critique other writers' work because she didn't want to discourage anyone, especially beginners.

Because it's an autobi
...more
Gwenyth
Oct 22, 2011 Gwenyth rated it liked it
Recommends it for: People who really like Agatha Christie
This was ok... a bit slow-moving and I never found myself more than mildly interested. I liked best the sections about her childhood, although it was also interesting to learn that she had training as a pharmacist and a nurse in WWI.

She never gives much more away about herself or her family than she does about the characters in her books; everyone remains drawn in pretty broad strokes. It reads like a person trying to present a good image of themselves to the world. You do get a sense that there
...more
Jill
Jan 26, 2017 Jill rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Absolutely charming, witty, wise and delightful. I have never read an Agatha Christie book but after listening to her narrate her autobiography I am ready to begin placing each one on hold from the library. I feel like a fool admitting it but I had no idea she wrote short stories and plays (very, very successful plays). I had only known of her as a writer of detective stories, which are not my first, second or third genre of choice. Because I avoided the genre I knew nothing of her or her vast b ...more
Susanne
May 17, 2013 Susanne rated it really liked it
An absorbing read for me. What an extraordinary life Agatha Christie had: from her Victorian upbringing in a well-to-do household, to a much more austere life after her father died, to her first husband Colonel Christie who took her on travels around the world, to her amazing rise as the Queen of the detective story, to her impulsive solo trips to the Middle East after her marriage dissolved and finally meeting her second husband (an archeologist) who took her with him all all his "digs"... WOW! ...more
Marina Stavropoulou
It's finally over! After two months of slug-reading I can proudly say that I finished it. Now, why exactly this is important I wouldn't know. I was interested in the writing life of an author such as Agatha Christie but I got very little of that - like 7% of the whole book. It was mostly about her childhood, her married life (both husbands) and the archaelogical diggs (which was the only interesting thing I could find here). I mean why on earth would I care about the curtain patterns, the sturdi ...more
ABC
Apr 04, 2011 ABC rated it really liked it
Shelves: teens-and-adults
Surprisingly, this book is not tightly written like her detective novels. It tends to ramble and she goes into excruciating detail on the topics that interest her (servants, boyfriends, clothes, travelling, etc.) She does not write all that much about her writing career. She doesn't seem at all passionate about it-she admits that she wrote books to make money.

I get the feeling she wrote this book to please herself and her loved ones, not necessarily to make the general public happy. Which is fi
...more
Eva
Jul 11, 2015 Eva rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I am a great fan of Agatha Christie novels and after having read her autobiography I am now also in awe of her. The woman has lived five lives and she did so in a period that was not friendly towards women who had a personality which clashed with the established laws of society. I can only say that I wish I will have half the courage in my life to pursue my dreams.
It is no wonder that many of her crime novels have the archaeological element in them because it was something that she became very
...more
Thilsath Abdul
Feb 18, 2016 Thilsath Abdul rated it it was amazing
A beautiful memoir of Agatha Christie. A very longggg book, took me few months to finish it. Agatha brought her readers to her childhood and to the moments of how she thread through various phases of life;two marriages, a divorce, losing her loved ones, travelling around the world, surviving World War I &II and in the midst of it all publishing 66 detective novels.

She had lived a great life,a truly honorable humble life.
Amy
Apr 30, 2012 Amy rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2016
This was one of the most word dense books I've read - much different from the light dialog filled mysteries she wrote.

The whole book had the feel of sitting with an elderly lady and hearing her life story. In parts in rambled. Parts were white washed. Sometimes she was frank and a little self deprecating.

I do wish she had done more talking about each of her books or her writing in general but that's a pretty minor complaint overall.

A must read for any AC fan.
Sophiebird
Oct 23, 2009 Sophiebird rated it really liked it
A nice blast into the past. I really enjoyed her humble attitude and how she learned her strengths and weaknesses. Always interesting to compare the ways of the half of the 20th century to the chaos of now. Like, no one would consider driving to an event a mile or two away unless they were ill or elderly. Sometimes this is a slow read, but still captivating. Her memory of her past is phenomenal.
Mai Laakso
Jan 20, 2016 Mai Laakso rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: memoir, female-writer
Todella mainio elämäkerta dekkarikuningattaren itsensä kirjoittamana. Mukana kuvia.
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Agatha Christie also wrote romance novels under the pseudonym Mary Westmacott, and was occasionally published under the name Agatha Christie Mallowan.

Agatha Christie is the best-selling author of all time. She wrote eighty crime novels and story collections, fourteen plays, and several other books. Her books have sold roughly four billion copies and have been translated into 45 languages. She is t
...more
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