Facts About Agatha Christie
Agatha Christie, the famous crime novelist, was born September 15th, 1890 in Torquay, England. At birth she was named Agatha Mary Clarissa Miller by her mother Clara Boehmer, a Belfast-born Englishwoman, and Frederick Alvah Miller, an American stockbroker. She grew up in a wealthy family, and was often quoted as saying that she had a very happy childhood. Agatha taught herself to read by the time she was five, despite her mother’s wishes that she not learn until she was eight. As a child Agatha developed a love for children’s stories, poetry and thrillers. By the age of 18 Agatha was writing short stories. During World War I Agatha began writing detective stories and shortly after the war ended her first novel The Mysterious Affair at Styles was published.
Agatha Miller married Archibald Christie in 1914.
Agatha served in the Voluntary Aid Detachment during World War I at the hospital in Torquay.
When Archibald returned from the war they had one daughter Rosalind, born in 1919.
During World War II, Agatha Christie contributed to the war effort by working as a pharmacy assistant at University College Hospital in London.
In 1922 Agatha Christie’s novel The Secret Adversary was published.
At the beginning of her career, when she was trying to sell stories to magazines such as The Saturday Evening Post, Christie would rewrite her stories if the magazines requested it.
In 1926 Archibald asked for a divorce, and shortly after Agatha disappeared for 11 days. She was found in the Swan Hydropathic Hotel in Yorkshire under an alias.
She was named a Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire (DBE) for her services to literature.
During her marriage to Archibald Agatha published six novels, a short story collection, and several stories in magazines.
After her first husband, Archibald, asked for a divorce, Christie disappeared for 10 days.
Agatha Christie married Max Mallowan, an archaeologist, in 1930. The marriage lasted until Agatha’s death in 1976.
Both Hercule Poirot and Miss Marple are creations of Christie’s imagination.
The Agatha Christie books published in the 1920s include The Mysterious Affair at Styles (1920), The Secret Adversary (1922), The Murder on the Links (1923), The Man in the Brown Suit (1924), The Secret of Chimneys (1925), The Murder of Roger Ackroyd (1926), The Big Four (1927), The Mystery of the Blue Train (1928), and The Seven Dials Mystery (1929).
She’s responsible for the world’s longest-running play “The Mousetrap”.
Agatha Christie had 17 more novels published in the 1930s.
According to some counts, Christie is the most widely published author in the world, second only to Shakespeare and the Bible.
Characters in her early books included Miss Marple, Tommy and Tuppence, and Hercule Poirot. These characters were used continuously in her novels until her death.
In addition to her prolific production of mystery stories, Christie wrote six romance novels. These novels were published using the pen name Mary Westmacott.
Agatha Christie also wrote romance novels under the pen name of Mary Westmacott including Giant’s Bread (1930), Unfinished Portrait (1934), Absent in the Spring (1944), The Rose and the Yew Tree (1948), A Daughter’s a Daughter (1952), The Burden (1956).
Agatha Christie’s mystery stories have been made into countless film and television adaptations, including the recent film adaptation of Murder on the Orient Express and the television miniseries “The Pale Horse”, “The ABC Murders”, and “And Then There Were None”.
Agatha Christie wrote in other mediums in addition to novels. She wrote many plays, short stories, radio plays, television plays, non-fiction, poetry, and several co-authored works.
Today, at least 30 films have been made from her stories.
Many of Agatha Christie’s written works have been adapted into plays, television shows, and movies.
The original 1952 cast of “The Mousetrap” starred Christie’s friends Sheila and Richard Attenborough.
The last public appearance Agatha Christie made was in 1974, to attend the opening of the film Murder on the Orient Express. She thought that Poirot’s moustache in the movie was not luxurious enough but she like the film.
It was some four years before The Mysterious Affair at Styles was published, having been rejected by six publishers.
At one time the British Intelligence agency MI5 as investigating Agatha Christie because of one of her characters, a spy, was believed to be real. Agatha laid their fears to rest and the case was closed.
The Mysterious Affair at Styles earned her the princely sum of £25.
In 1971 Agatha Christie was named Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire.
Twice in her life she ‘saw’ Hercule Poirot – once lunching in the Savoy and once on a boat in the Canary Islands.
When her husband became a knight she could also be called Lady Mallowan.
With her earnings from the serialisation of The Man in the Brown Suit, she bought a Morris Cowley.
Agatha Christie died on January 12th, 1976 and is buried in St. Mary’s churchyard in Chosley.
She described The Mystery of the Blue Train as ‘easily the worst book I ever wrote’. She wrote this while in the Canary Islands.