Passenger to Frankfurt
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Passenger to Frankfurt

3.12 of 5 stars 3.12  ·  rating details  ·  3,822 ratings  ·  252 reviews
When a bored diplomat is approached in a bleak airport by a woman whose life is in danger, his interest is aroused. In a moment of weakness, he agrees to lend her his passport and boarding ticket. Suddenly, his own life is on the line.
Paperback, 363 pages
Published 2003 by Harper (first published 1970)
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Peter
"I hate to say it, but this was terrible. Dear Agatha was really losing it. Laughably, this is subtitled ""an Extraganza"", but it's more like a disaster.

Passenger is one of her thrillers, although the word hardly applies. Set in 1970, it starts out promisingly with unambitious diplomat Sir Stafford Nye accepting a daring proposal from the beautiful and enigmatic Countess Renata in the Frankfort airport. The next 100 pages are engaging as he tries to track down this woman, avoids some near death...more
Anushka
Also find this review on - Don't Stop Readin'

What in the world was this! I disliked this book from the very first page itself.
I'm no one to question Agatha Christie but this book was totally ridiculous. It was supposed be to espionage but was reduced to an utter pile of fail. I really, really don't want to disrespect the Queen of Crime but Passenger to Frankfurt was boring, and along with being pointless it was also plotless.

It started off with a diplomat being asked to lend his identity to a w...more
Narrelle
Christie attempts a James Bond style story, complete with outré villains and globe trotting protagonists. It's almost spec fic with its near-future revolutions and social engineering.

Sadly, it's overblown, vague waffle predicated on a premise of OMG YOUNG PEOPLE! and I BLAME NAZIS!! Most characters speak in almost the same voice, though Aunt Matilda and Stafford Nye manage to rise above the general mess. The villains may be outré but that's no substitute for actual characterisation.

Only a few...more
Colleen
Weird, weird, weird. You could tell based on the preface and the strange pleading to the reader that this COULD all happen and that Christie had stewed long and hard on this, but really it was her way outside her element. The book is like an old woman's paranoid treatise, so guess mildly interesting just for that odd window to Christie's view of 1970.

I kind of skipped thru the Benvo part, because it didn't really make sense and was a terrible idea. Then the revelation of Juanita (who I actually...more
Texbritreader
A Cold War spy thriller/mystery from Agatha Christie and a perfect example of the author at her worst. After a far fetched but decent opening gambit, the first part of the novel descends to a catalog of the trouble with "young people" circa 1970, and a lot of improbable conspiracy theories about what was behind then current political and social movements. Christie was clearly at odds with the values and ideas of the era and it infects her book with a strange, paranoid flavor that seems very funn...more
Laurel Young
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Leslie
I feel sad giving only 1 star to an Agatha Christie novel, as I have found almost every other book I've read of hers really intriguing. Passenger to Frankfurt is definitely of a different genre than the rest of her novels. It is more a book about politics and social commentary than the typical whodunnit that she is known for. I really couldn't get into the plot, nor could I even understand what was going on half the time because the story seemed to jump around a lot and lose focus. The only reas...more
Elizabeth Tangora
Super, super weird, even for a Christie novel. For one: no mystery, just a bizarrely convoluted story of international 70s-style intrigue involving a well-born British guy who likes wearing capes, a nefarious plot to get students to overthrow all governments, Wagner's Ring symbolism, an evil Nazi blonde hunk, and (spoiler!) Hitler living a secret life in Argentina where I guess nobody recognizes him in even one instance over the course of 30 years. Oh, and a wedding at the end! (I won't say who,...more
Grey Wolf
This was a strange book. The first time I read it when I was 17 I was all like "Wow, Agatha Christie has written an alternate history story about NAZIS!" and then I read it again a couple of years ago and all of its flaws shone through.

The plot starts off reasonably simple but soon gets crazily convoluted. The logic of many of the characters' positions is hard to grasp. And the solution decided upon to deal with the emergency is more extreme than the Nazi revivalists are themselves!

One gets the...more
Phayvanh
This is the reason Madame Christie isn't known for her political intrigue novels. There is no suspense here. But not because she has no plot. But because she has no idea how international spies talk or act or think. Their conversations do not amount to anything. For this reason alone, the book sucks.

I got half way through before I realized that Christie was figuring out the story on the page. None of the original details that support her best works, none of the mind boggling twists and turns th...more
Abhishek
By the time I finished the book I was astonished by the turn of events. This was the first novel by Mrs. Christie that hasn't gone well with me. And I think for that Mrs. Christie herself is to be blamed entirely. Firstly for choosing espionage as the center theme for this book. And secondly for writing this book.

Well if anything, one thing is assured and that's espionage is not Mrs. Christie forte. As much as I appreciate Mrs. Christie's work, this book fails to impress at all.

This book begins...more
Jessie
Feb 03, 2012 Jessie rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: rabid Agatha Christie fans
Warning! Mild Spoilers!

An insouciant and debonair young diplomat, a beautiful girl in danger, Cold War espionage still raging amidst the turmoil of student unrest, economic volatility and political instability - and that's just chapter one. Throw in a world-wide conspiracy of anarchist youth, a mysterious cabal of business leaders, Adolph Hitler, and a miracle drug and you have "Passenger to Frankfurt."

At first I thought "This is rather dated and not standing up well to the test of time." Then I...more
Sara
So, I am a die-hard Agatha Christie fan. My mom and I started watching the Joan Hickson Miss Marple series when I was a child. I have almost all of the Agatha Christie adaptations that are out on DVD. I have read almost all of her books. Passenger to Frankfurt was one that I had missed. Now I know why.

Christie is a crime queen. There is no denying that. She scripts an amazing who-done-it. She writes charming detectives. She is not, however, a master of the spy novel, which is what this book ost...more
Jean
Sep 01, 2011 Jean rated it 2 of 5 stars
Recommended to Jean by: I had it in my collection.
This book by Agatha Christie was different from the murder mysteries. It was written in 1970 and reminded me of Buchan's "Thirty-nine Steps", in that it was an adventure story where the aims of the people involved were unclear to me, and therefore fairly meaningless. The best part of the book was the quotation by Jan Smuts preceding the story: "Leadership, besides being a great creative force, can be diabolical..." I thought that this quotation could be applied to quite a few diabolical leaders,...more
Victoria
I highly recommend this book to anyone suffering from insomnia. I, for one, fell asleep everytime I picked it up. Consequently, it took me forever to read. This was a really disappointing offering from one of my favorite authors. The book just went on & on and people talked & talked, but nothing ever HAPPENED. All they did was talk about the stuff that happened "offstage." If the whole book had been like the last 10 pages, maybe it would have been good, but even when something finally di...more
Ivana Azap
OK, it was good as a concept, but... maybe I am dumb, but I did not quite get the end game... but that is just me :/
Christina
Among Agatha Christie's worst, if not the worst she's written. It's possible that I enjoyed this book so little because I'm used to wonderful stuff from her, but I thought this book was boring, overly complicated, and disjointed. She is clearly making some kind of political commentary on the fall of modern society, but it is very muddled and her "solution" is not only unconvincing and contrived, but downright problematic. Unfortunately, this book puts her in the company of second-rate (if not th...more
Boheemyweazy
'What's happening, why am I here, what's going on?' The hero kept asking. He didn't know, I didn't know, and sadly I didn't care. Halfway through the book I gave up. It was just too irritatingly tedious, and that's never happened with a Christie book before.

It felt like Christie was trying to hit a certain a word-count, and so stretched every conversation to incredible inanity. Consequently all the characters spoke a lot but said little:

"What do you think of the situation?"
"I think it's an inter...more
Christa
This only gets two stars because of a few interesting plot elements and as a general hat-tip of respect to Agatha Christie.

Sir Stafford Nye, an under-utilized low-level diplomatic troublemaker, gets unexpectedly sucked up into a world of high espionage as a neo-fascist youth movement rises up to seek world domination. Simple, right?

1) First of all, I have always felt that many of Christie's later books, specifically those from the 60's and 70's show her deep fear and concern about what she saw...more
Alberto
Unreadable tripe. It doesn't make any sense.

"The news from France is bad. The news from Italy is bad." She doesn't know enough to make up something halfway plausible, so it's all gibberish.

Cuba, Argentina and Brazil form a fascist cooperative? Wtf? She doesn't seem to know the difference between a hippie and a skinhead, a communist and a nazi. Oh noes, it's the youths!!!

How does it even get resolved? Are the "bad guys" stopped? We don't know because there is no ending; the book just comes to a...more
Allison
Of all the Christie I've read, this is definitely my least favorite. I wish I could give it 1-1/2 stars, as it started out pretty well, but it then deteriorates into nonsensical, idealogical tripe about the possibilities of neo-Nazism in a materialistic world. And it just suddenly ends. Barely any suspense/mystery, and what mystery there was, I didn't care about at all. I can't believe Agatha Christie wrote this, in fact.
Troy Blackford
I don't think I understood what happened by the end of the book -- and from some things others have said, I don't think my experience was unusual. Oh well, she was 80 when she wrote this one. The prose is snappy and clear, unlike 'Elephants Can Remember,' from years later, but the story of 'Elephants' was more coherent.
Sanya Weathers
I love Agatha Christie, in no small part because each of her books are these delightful little time capsules of a place and time... and those places and times range from just after WW1 up to the 1970s.

I don't usually love her world-conspiracy novels, just because they're too terribly thriller-ish. Super villains stalking the halls of power. financiers playing deep games, blah blah blah. She's much better when she's rocking the small towns, the human psychology, the observational humor. These? T...more
Joanna
This was not the book I assumed it would be. There were political rants and lots of important men having important meetings. The diplomat seemed like a jerk. I just wanted someone to commit a murder and then someone else to solve it.
Yasmine Attiyah
Disappointing and disjointed. I am in a total loss after finishing the book, I don't even know what hit me. I never thought I would hate any of Agatha Christie's works, but sadly it happened with Passenger to Frankfurt.
Anurasika
Wow, an Agatha Christie I couldn't finish due to skanky politics and race issues. I am less hardened to her issues than I thought.
Also, goodreads needs an 'abandoned' shelf to put next to 'to read' and 'read'
Daniel Bratell
Finally after reading a lot of excellent Agatha Christie novels I found her very worst one.

Passenger to Frankfurt is a global-scale-thriller-spy-drama written not long after the 1968 uprisings and demonstrations. The only thing I get out of this novel, which is full of completely ridiculous ideas, is that the author was scared of what was happening around her.

The story has no cohesion, no clever turns, no interesting and believable characters, no probable development...

Do not read this book. Th...more
Ravie
Terrible, just terrible. Agatha Christie is at her worst.
Full review: http://therarefied.blogspot.in/2013/0...
Zack Urlocker
I had read other reviews that were critical of this book but I supposed they did not like the espionage genre. Unfortunately I was wrong. It's a weak and inconsistent book. The themes (a world going wrong, nefarious plots etc) are excellent and the characters are ok. But the plot is where things fall down. It starts off with a fast pace but doesn't sustain it. The further you get into the book it starts to deteriorate. I won't say it's absurd and some of the ideas were not necessarily cliche'd w...more
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Agatha Christie L...: December 2016 - Passenger to Frankfurt 1 3 Aug 15, 2014 08:49PM  
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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 Mary Clarissa Miller was born in Torquay, Devon, England, U.K., as the youngest of three. The Millers had two other children: Margaret Frary Miller (1879–1950), called Madge, who was eleven years Agatha's senior, and Louis Montant Miller (1880...more
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