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They Came to Baghdad

3.79  ·  Rating details ·  12,729 ratings  ·  873 reviews
Baghdad is holding a secret superpower summit, but the word is out, and an underground organization in the Middle East is plotting to sabotage the talks.

Into this explosive situation appears Victoria Jones, a young woman with a yearning for adventure who gets more than she bargains for when a wounded spy dies in her hotel room.

The only man who can save the summit is dead.
Paperback, 364 pages
Published 2003 by HarperCollins (first published March 5th 1951)
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Dra Charing Cross; she forbids him to call her "Viccy"
And Then There Were None by Agatha ChristieMurder on the Orient Express by Agatha ChristieThe Murder of Roger Ackroyd by Agatha ChristieDeath on the Nile by Agatha ChristieThe A.B.C. Murders by Agatha Christie
Best Agatha Christie Book
89 books — 1,139 voters
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857 books — 1,087 voters

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3.79  · 
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 ·  12,729 ratings  ·  873 reviews

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Feb 25, 2018 rated it really liked it
As a Christie fan I'm wondering how this little gem escaped my notice all these years?


I think Victoria may be the most adorable pathological liar you'll ever meet. You can't be mad at her because she's just so honest about it! <-- 100% true


And you really shouldn't like her so much considering all the idiotic choices she makes which land her in incredibly dangerous situations. Starting with losing her job in the first scene, due to her need to perform a reenactment of a particularly embarrassi
Dec 28, 2014 rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: fans of early thrillers
Shelves: thriller, meh, mystery
From my review at

Agatha Christie does thrillers.

Or not, depending on your point of view.

This one might work as a movie (I'm disinclined to find out, but if you are interested one was made in 1952), but fails to impress as a book.

Victoria Jones has been fired from her typist position. As she sits in a courtyard, eating her lunch, she's politely approached by a diffident young man who strikes up a conversation. In America, Miss Anna Scheele, personal secr
Aug 13, 2009 rated it really liked it
I don’t even have words to describe the madcap charm of this book. No Miss Marple, no Poirot, just a heroine who redefines “spunky” and a plot that will leave you yearning for high jinks in the desert. International intrigue has never been such fun, nor has it probably ever been infiltrated by a mediocre shorthand typist. Miss Victoria Jones, freshly booted from her job, sits in a London park figuring out her next move. Enter a handsome lad named Edward who enchants Victoria but – oh no! – is le ...more
Vikas Singh
Aug 01, 2018 rated it it was amazing
It was almost like reading a Robert Ludlum novel. Great start, fast paced action spread across different cities, unconnected people , a mastermind brilliantly orchestrating the entire drama and all coming together in the end to give a nice satisfying closure. Written decades ago when espionage , compared to current standards, was novice, the story line holds your attention till the end. Nice gripping drama.
Sep 17, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Ann by: Katie! Thanks!!
Shelves: mysteries
Easily one of my favorite Agatha Christie books! The more mystery books I read, the more I realize just how incredible Christie was at what she did.

This mystery centers around, not so much a murder, but the plot of a political overthrow (Is the overthrow a good thing? Or a bad thing? And even, does it exist?). Our protagonist, Victoria, finds herself suddenly placed in the middle of it all, and must decide just how involved she wants to be.

"They Came to Baghdad" has an intriguing blend of all so
Tadiana ✩Night Owl☽
Sep 12, 2014 rated it really liked it
I read this some time in the 1980s and remember thinking it was one of Christie's more enjoyable books. This is a reminder to myself to read it again sometime and see if I still think that's true.

It's too bad I still remember who the villain is (it was a particularly surprising reveal to me) because I've forgotten almost everything else about this book.
Aug 31, 2009 rated it really liked it
Shelves: mystery
I loved the title--so mysterious and alluring, WHO came to Baghdad? And WHY??? And I quite loved my adventure in Baghdad with all of those who "came" there. Full of Middle Eastern ambiance, but with a good dose of 1950s British-ness thanks to our lead characters, it's the perfect blend of humor and adventure, exotic and comfortable, a bit of romance, and of course lots of suspense! I give it only four stars because I thought a the chapters in the beginning jostle around as we are introduced to t ...more
***2018 Summer of Spies***

I went into this novel with trepidation, as my friends’ opinions of it are all over the map. I think that reaction to it may be a function of timing & mood—are you in the market for some fluffy, silly spy fun or not?

It does get rather silly at several points—Victoria is remarkably self-sufficient for a Cockney lass who has never been out of London city before. Right after she loses her job, she has a brief encounter with the handsome Edward, which sends her lookin
I bought this book on a whim. I was looking for "And Then There Were None" but it was sadly out of stock. But not so sad... Agatha is just one of those writers who, regardless of what book you get, she'll never disappoint you.
Starting with... the mendacious Victoria Jones (woman reminded me of my ten year old self). She was so lovable and clever and witty but a bit of an airhead sometimes. Then there was Edward, the handsome stranger who made her just pack up and head to Baghdad on a whim (girl
Book Concierge
Adapted from the book jacket: Baghdad is holding a secret superpower summit, but the word is out, and an underground organization in the Middle East is plotting to sabotage the talks. Into this explosive situation appears Victoria Jones, a young woman with a yearning for love and adventure who gets more than she bargains for when she follows a young man to that city.

My reactions
I love Dame Christie’s works, and am especially fond of the series starring Hercule Poirot. This is one of her better
Apr 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Giving this one a full five stars for the audio edition, as Emilia Fox's narration really did help make this a breakout experience.

Initially, I wasn't sure what to expect as the story changed points of view. However, it soon became evident that this was going to be all about Victoria Jones. From attending several writing workshops, I've learned that the key point in a story is to be sure that the main character has learned from the experience. Victoria gets caught up in some cloak-and-dagger act
Maxine Mathew
Agatha Christie’s immaculate stories make her a master of suspense and mystery. They Came to Baghdad is different from other Agatha Christie's other books - it's more of a thriller than a mystery. I have not read much of spy novels, just Alex Rider series and that does not come anywhere near Christie’s ingenious plots. They Came To Baghdad does not have any high-tech machines or a gripping fight scenes, yet it is a book that the readers will find riveting and electrifying. The strong point of th ...more
Misha  Mathew
Apr 24, 2011 rated it it was amazing
*Maxine's Review*

Agatha Christie’s immaculate stories make her a master of suspense and mystery. They Came to Baghdad is different from other Agatha Christie's other books - it's more of a thriller than a mystery. I have not read much of spy novels, just Alex Rider series and that does not come anywhere near Christie’s ingenious plots. They Came To Baghdad does not have any high-tech machines or a gripping fight scenes, yet it is a book that the readers will find riveting and electrifying. The s
An entertaining mystery/thriller and a relatively fast paced read. The setting takes place in exotic Baghdad. Victoria Jones is a bit of a "ditzy" character. She is a young woman with a thirst for adventure who unwittingly becomes caught up in a game of cat and mouse with some very unsavoury characters.

I haven't read Christie for years and had forgotten just how engaging her novels are. Even though I had my suspicions early on as to who the main culprit would be I could still appreciate the var
This is a flawed but fascinating Christie set in the then fabled city of Baghdad and as is so often with Christie involving a feisty independent female protagonist in Victoria Jones who throwing all caution to the winds becomes involved in a dangerous adventure involving spies, Communists and the overthrow of world order. Great fun and lots of well realised local colour based on the author’s own experience of the Middle East
In this book, we meet the adventurous Victoria Jones, a young woman with a knack for lying frequently and convincingly, who shortly after being fired from her most recent position as a mediocre shorthand typist, meets a handsome and charming young man in the park. They strike up a conversation, he confides that he is about to go to Baghdad and asks to take a couple of photographs of her as a memento. Victoria is smitten, and as the young man she's fallen head over heels for is going to be in Bag ...more
Apr 14, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: mystery
This book is not one of Christie’s Poirot or Miss Marple mysteries – it’s a standalone and actually much more of a spy novel or thriller than a mystery. With an exciting plot involving kidnappings, conspiracies, impersonations, disguises and secret messages, I found it a lot of fun to read – one of those books I genuinely didn’t want to have to put down until I was finished!

So, who came to Baghdad? Well, first of all there’s our heroine, Victoria Jones, a young woman with a vivid imagination and
Melanie (Mel's Bookland Adventures)
This was lovely again, not read this in decades
Oct 03, 2018 rated it it was ok
Man, this was a slog for me. I have to say, when I found out Agatha Christie had a book called They Came to Baghdad, I was so excited! When I started reading, I was still excited, and even thought about getting a copy for my dad for Christmas. Oh, I should probably say, for those who don't know me, my parents are Iraqi immigrants, and I've been to Baghdad on multiple trips to visit family that was living there in the '90s and early aughts. I'm pretty sure I've been to the coppersmith souk on one ...more
Loved! There were some essences that reminded me of Elizabeth Peters and Mary Stewart. Loved this adventure story. It’s a different stand-alone from her usual.
Such a hidden gem, I'm not sure why people don't talk about this Christie as much. It's kind of a cozy thriller, combining spy novel with intrigue and mystery. Not life changing, but a fun, solid read, the kind I'd reread when I'm in a reading slump and need to get out.
Laurel Young
Nov 08, 2010 rated it liked it
I never realized that Dame Agatha had written so many "adventure" novels--her reputation rests solidly on her detective fiction, and I think I have typically read the novels featuring one of her Great Detectives, Poirot or Miss Marple (or Tommy and Tuppence, etc.). But now that I am reading her entire canon, I find that she has quite a lot of novels that might be better characterized as adventure with a mystery twist...and they are really not my cup of tea in the least. Perhaps I'm unusual, but ...more
May 02, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2016, stars-4-0
First of all, I am a fan of Agatha Christie. She’s my go-to when I need something I know I will enjoy. Plus, I often think people kind of take her for granted, not realising her skill.

They Came to Baghdad is perhaps not one of her best, but it is definitely entertaining. The convoluted plot is hilarious, full of adventure, red herrings, kidnappings, impersonations, all this set in the exotic Middle East. I felt, listening to Emilia Fox’s performance, as if a spy film (one that doesn’t take itse
Aug 03, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Absolutely tip-top and fantastic. I would write more, but you can't really go on about it very much without giving something away! I'll just say that Victoria, (young, smart, cute Cockney typist who finds herself suddenly playing a dangerous part in a web of intruige ), is one of the most endearing characters, and the romance is sweet!
Tanya (aka ListObsessedReader)
This was fun! But not my favourite Agatha... 3.5 stars?
Manuel Alfonseca
ENGLISH: An atypical novel by Agatha Christie, without any of her famous detectives and rather in the spy genre than a detection mystery. A somewhat twisted and innocent intrigue about a group of people launching a global conspiracy against the two blocks of the time (the West and the USSR), trying to destroy everything and start over again, no matter who falls. For most of the reading I suspected everyone (except Victoria), but I can boast that I suspected from the beginning about the super-evi ...more
C Valeri
Dec 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing
"But she would have to be very careful not to make any real slip. Luckily, thought Victoria, men were always so superior about women that any slip she did make would be treated less as a suspicious circumstances than as a proof of how ridiculously addlepated all women were!"

This is an example of an Agatha Christie novel that needs to be adapted into a movie! I can see this being a blockbuster hit! (Kenneth Branagh, make it happen!)
The strength of this Christie novel is in its lead character, V
Jo Hurst
Sep 25, 2018 rated it really liked it
I didn’t get a chance to read this as quick as I wanted to which was s shame because it was such good fun! Spys and intrigue during the Cold War Agatha Christie style. It’s a good old fashioned romp where the heroine Victoria finds herself embroiled in a big plot that happens in Baghdad and finds her tendency to be a pathological liar quite handy! Don’t let this put you off, Victoria is intelligent, smart and brave and instantly likeable and plays the foolish woman to great advantage. A little g ...more
May 18, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Enjoyed it. More adventurous than being mysterious or detective novel.
Pankaj Goyal
Jan 24, 2019 rated it it was ok
Read my detailed review of this book here
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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 66 crime novels and story collections, fourteen plays, and six novels under a pseudonym in Romance. Her books have sold over a billion copies in the English language and a billion in t
“He’s very nice,” said Mrs. Clayton, “but not quite quite, you know. Hasn’t got any idea of culture.” Richard found his room exceedingly comfortable, and his appreciation of Mrs. Clayton as a hostess rose still higher.” 2 likes
“Zabluda da silom možete ljudskom rodu da nametnete blagostanje jedna je od najopasnijih koje postoje. Oni koji su tu samo da bi napunili džepove ne mogu mnogo da naude - puka pohlepa na kraju sama sebi dođe glave. Ali vera u ljude višeg nivoa, u nadljude koji treba da vladaju slabijim ostatkom čovečanstva, to je, Viktorija, najopasnije od svih uverenja. Jer kad kažete "Ja nisam kao drugi" , tada gubite dve najvrednije tekovine kojima smo ikada težili - ravnopravnost i osećaj pripadnosti” 1 likes
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