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The Sittaford Mystery

3.71  ·  Rating details ·  13,005 ratings  ·  936 reviews
Agatha Christie is more than the most popular mystery writer of all time. In a career that spans over half a century, her name is synonymous with brilliant deception, ingenious puzzles, and the surprise denouement. By virtually inventing the modern mystery novel she has earned her title as the Queen of Crime. Curious? Then you're invited to read....THE SITTAFORD MYSTERY

Paperback, Agatha Christie Signature Edition, 400 pages
Published 2002 by HarperCollins Publishers Ltd. (first published 1931)
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 ·  13,005 ratings  ·  936 reviews

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Nov 13, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: mystery
A pretty entertaining mystery, although a little excessive as to coincidences and red herrings.
The human element would have been stronger if we had ever met Jim -- or would it? Maybe he would have proven to be just as wimpy and dull as he sounded second-hand.
Laurel Young
Jan 11, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Just for maximum confusion, many of Christie's novels have different titles in the British vs. American editions. What I actually read was entitled Murder at Hazelmoor, but it is aka The Sittaford Mystery. Whatever one calls it, this novel typifies why Dame Agatha is the Mystery Goddess to me. I love many of her contemporaries--Sayers, Marsh, Tay, Wentworth, and esp. Rinehart--but it is rare for them to stump me. I've just been at this game too long; I usually have the solution figured out by ...more
Dec 17, 2017 rated it really liked it
I am really enjoying Agatha Christie novels! I like the way she has a sly laugh at crime detection. I like the way she includes red herrings. I like the way I can’t work out the culprit, dammit! I even like the 1920s language, and laughing at the cultural norms of the time and wondering what on earth Christie would make of life in 2017.
Mar 08, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone
Agatha Christie does it again.

No Marple or Poirot in this one. Instead, Emily Trefusis is our plucky heroine. Christie adores creating a smart, attractive, sharp female character.

Emily is determined to get her fiancée, James Pearson, out of jail. He's accused of murder - but Emily knows there's no way he could have done it. "Jim is a frightful idiot. But he doesn't murder people.”

Once again, Christie's wit and humor blow me away. She is such a funny writer! I would almost classify her books as
Julian Worker
Aug 15, 2019 rated it really liked it
This is a classic Agatha Christie where she makes you suspect most of the characters during the book and then it turns out to be the one person you least suspected - and then it seems so obvious they did it. How does she do this and how come I didn't spot the clues? The writing is so effortless and simple to read. There's a little love mystery in the book too. I find myself reading her books from beginning to end in perhaps four installments - what a pity I have to sleep, eat, and go to work!
WhatIReallyRead (Anna)
The perfect winter read! I rarely read mysteries, but this was delightful.

The Sittaford Mystery is set in a remote village in England, which gets completely cut off from civilization when it's snowing. And it was snowing, you get what I'm saying? *eyebrows wagging*

I liked the village busy-body characters and the multitude of suspicious types. I was also glad to see so many strong women in the book. A number of female characters significantly further the plot, and even save the day.

It's the
Lady Clementina ffinch-ffarowmore
Major Burnaby who has gone to visit with his neighbours the Willets finds himself participating in “tableturning” but after a harmless bit of fun, the “spirits” inform them that Captain Tevelyan has been murdered. Navy Captain Joe Trevelyan had retired to the small village of Sittaford in Dartmoor where he built six houses, one of which he occupied himself, and the rest sold to others, among them Major Burnaby his closest friend. The Captain’s only flaws seem reclusiveness and a fondness for ...more
A pretty standard Agatha Christie mystery. I liked the snowy winter atmosphere and the mystery was intriguing throughout. Emily, the amateur detective, felt pretty much interchangeable with any other young female detective in any other Agatha Christie novel though and I wasn't a fan of that.
Dec 06, 2017 rated it really liked it
“People don't do things without a reason.”

Another entertaining read. No Poirot or Marple in sight, which always means that you have no idea where the narration is going to go. I rather enjoyed following smart and manipulative Miss Emily, sleuthing to prove the innocence of her Fiancé, who yes, looked rather insipid. One ‘thing’ at the beginning gave me a clue that reduced the pool of suspects. Still, it is always fascinating to see what all that colourful cast had to say and more importantly,
People don't generally move from somewhere warm in winter to somewhere wintry. But two of the characters in this story do, to everyone's puzzlement. But they're not even the most interesting characters in this mystery. That honour goes to Emily Trefusis who, after Captain Trevelyan is murdered and her fiancé is charged, embarks on her own investigation of all the potential suspects, roping in a reporter and using her wits, intelligence and lots of logic. This isn't a Marple or Poirot story, and ...more
Katie Lumsden
Jan 16, 2018 rated it liked it
A very enjoyable read, like all Agatha Christie, and with some wonderful characters, although I think my reading was slightly marred by having seen a (very different) television adaptation of the story first.
Vikas Singh
Jan 15, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: owned-book
Another blockbuster from the pen of Agatha Christie. This novel has the most eerie beginning amongst all her novels. The development of the plot is slow in the beginning but it soon picks up pace and you just cannot out it down in last hundred pages. And in the end when the murderer is revealed you are left wondering as to why you did not think of that before.
Jul 06, 2018 rated it it was ok
It's weird for me to dislike Christie books, but this one did nothing for me. It was a struggle to finish. I think the main issue was that I just found the why behind who murdered an eccentric and misogynistic man (Captain Trevelyan) to be boring due to one of the main character we follow through most of the book.

Captain Trevelyan is found murdered after a weird seance tells the group who is holding it that he is dead. Trevelyan's long time friend and neighbor Major Burnaby goes to his home
Dec 12, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: reviewed
"Major Burnaby drew on his gum boots, buttoned his overcoat collar round his neck, took from a shelf near the door a hurricane lantern, and cautiously opened the front door of his little bungalow and peered out."

I love this opening paragraph. It sets the scene for one of my favourite cozy mysteries: A small village near Dartmoor - you know, the misty remote parts of Baskerville fame.
Some of the villagers have are gathering for tea and enjoy a game of table-turning, adding a supernatural edge to
Caidyn (SEMI-HIATUS; BW Reviews; he/him/his)
I actually guessed the killer right! Ah, how wonderful it is to follow your gut right from the start and not let go even as she started throwing in little hints to who else it could be. Overall, this wasn't too thrilling of a mystery since I followed my gut the whole time and didn't sway with it. Usually, I just go along with mysteries and don't bother trying to formulate too many ideas. Most of my ideas are flexible in mysteries. This is one of the few I've actually gotten right, another ...more
Richard Derus
Jul 13, 2016 rated it liked it
THE SITTAFORD MYSTERY made it onto my list, 5 Snowy Literary Escapes from this Summer of Climate Change Horror You'll get mental frostbite reading this one, but it's better than the heat! #BeachReads
Dec 14, 2017 rated it really liked it
It was by chance that I picked this Christie mystery out of the pile to read next, the story is set in a snowy wintry Dartmouth and whilst reading this during the middle of December really added to my enjoyment of this story.

I really liked the seance sequences, this is the main focus of the story as it appears that the spirits inform the group of the murder of Captain Trevelyan.

When they discover that he has in fact been killed, surely it must be someone playing a practical joke on the rest of
Nov 25, 2018 rated it really liked it
I am a great admirer of Agatha Christie stand alone book's. I love her Poriot and Miss Marple but I think her stand alone book's should get more attention. This one is about a murder, and a seance reveals the murder. Who the murder is I won't tell, but I recommend you read this book, so you can find out for yourself.
Dec 11, 2018 rated it really liked it
A winter mystery is perfect for those wintery days where a solstice is around the corner, a new year is beginning, etc.

When I first got into this book, I needed to prevent myself from calling it "The Sit-Upon Mystery." Sit-Upon is a Victorian-Era word for backside, isn't it? Could a woman complain, "That man had his eyes upon my sit-upon! Police! Arrest him!"

Anyway, seems like our heroine in this book, a potential long-lost feisty niece of Miss Marple, Emily Trefusis is well-aware of the
Mar 15, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This is the perfect book for a cosy night at home, wrapped in a blanket, eating chocolate and drinking tea (or wine ). ...more
Mar 09, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I already knew who the killer was, since I had watched a Brazilian booktuber's review with spoilers on youtube, but I didn't remember how it was possible the murder was committed, since there wasn't enough time for the killer to arrive at the murdered's house. I liked the book a lot because in it there is a woman with a very strong personality and she's also very intelligent. This woman decided to investigate the murder together with a reporter and they did very well in this task.
Dec 16, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: mystery
During a freak snowstorm, guests at a country house amuse themselves by conducting an impromptu seance. What starts as an innocent game of table-turning, turns genuinely sinister when the spirits spell out that the house's absent owner, Captain Trevelyan, is not only dead, but that he has just been murdered. Hours later the Captain's body is discovered in a neighboring village, slain just as the "spirits" predicted. So begins Agatha Christie's novel The Sittaford Mystery (published 1931), but ...more
Vintage Christie. However, I found it hard to keep all the characters straight in my head and I'm not sure I completely understood who a few of them were, and next I found the reason for the murder pretty lame. Also, the whole murder episode had a pretty unbelievable element in there, too.

This novel didn't not have Miss Marple or Poirot but a different, and never again used, Inspector. While he was present in the story, he seemed to do very little in solving the case.

On an aside note, I read
Jan 13, 2018 rated it really liked it
In a small village called Sittaford, most of the residents meet at a house to have a nice evening together. It's winter and heavy snow is falling. The people decide to play a game: table turning. In this game a murder is being announced. And in fact someone dies, outside of the village, but a resident of Sittaford. At first it appears the culprit is quickly found but a fierce young lady, Emily, starts investigating with a little help from everyone.

Short paragraph about the plot. I do love
Hiba Arrame
Jul 07, 2019 rated it really liked it
I almost always forget how talented Agatha Christie was, she had a knack for the unexpected and thrilling stories and she did them well, very well.

This is the investigation of a murder, too many faces, and so little evidence. How will the murderer be caught? The police are doing their best looking into every small detail about every close or involved person in the entourage of the victim, but is it enough?
A certain Jim is arrested and his fiancée knows he didn't do it. She just knows and will
Kim Kaso
Oct 27, 2018 rated it really liked it
A stand-alone Christie set in a village near Dartmoor, which we saw in our travels while living in England. The setting called to mind various literary scenes, particularly early chapters of Pip’s experiences in Great Expectations, especially when there was a convict escape.

This novel features an intrepid young woman fighting to clear her fiancée’s name, a Johnny-on-the-spot reporter, and a police inspector, as well as a village full of red herrings and suspects. A very enjoyable read,
Orinoco Womble (tidy bag and all)
Not Christie's most complex mystery by any means, but a good cosy read I snuggled down into with enjoyment. I've seen a couple of different filmed versions of it, and just in passing let me say that ITV's latest version has almost nothing to do with the original text! (Churchill? Really?) There is no sleuth in chief here, just a young woman determined to stand by her man.

There are almost too many characters in this book, which is typical of Christie in the early days. The cast includes a woman
Feb 17, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Re-reading Agatha Christie in order of publication ...

This was an extremely pleasant, if not compelling, book. A classic cozy book. I wasn’t crazy about the seance idea, but it served a purpose in the plot and wasn’t overly emphasized. I fell in love with the characters of Major Burnaby and Emily Trefusis. I didn’t mind the absence of Christie’s famous characters like Poirot or Miss Maple. I also loved how small and isolated the town of Sittaford was. I wish there were additional books with this
Mar 15, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery
There is something very appealing about murder mysteries set in remote English villages under heavy snow. It is more than the Christmas card prettiness and the excuse for roaring fires. There is an expectation that something interesting will happen, like the murder of a rich old Scrooge.

The Sittaford Mystery is an absolute Agatha Christie classic. It has an interesting mix of characters, young and old, plenty of red herrings, and a clever riddle at its heart. The surprising item here is the
Evi Routoula
Jun 27, 2015 rated it liked it
I really like Agatha Christie and i believe that she is maybe the best writer for this kind of fictional stories. This book is one of her early works most probably ( around 1920s?), it is a rather long book for its kind: too much blah blah, until the last pages you cant imagine who is the killer of course but the reasoning of the whole plot at the end isnt believable for me. It is a good story for relaxing but i was waiting for something better.
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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
“Never part with information unnecessarily. That's my rule,” 18 likes
“Nobody understands the art of living nowadays,... Catching trains, making appointments, fixing times for everything—all nonsense. Get up with the sun I say, have your meals when you feel like it, and never tie yourself to a time or a date. I could teach people how to live if they would listen to me.” 9 likes
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