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The Mysterious Affair at Styles [Kindle Edition]

Agatha Christie
4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (321 customer reviews)

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Book Description

This book was converted from its physical edition to the digital format by a community of volunteers. You may find it for free on the web. Purchase of the Kindle edition includes wireless delivery.


Editorial Reviews

Review

“Reading a perfectly plotted Agatha Christie is like crunching into a perfect apple: that pure, crisp, absolute satisfaction.” (Tana French, New York Times bestselling author)

“Altogether a skillfull tale and a talented first book.” (Daily News (UK))

“Almost too ingenious...very clearly and brightly told.” (Times Literary Supplement (London))

Review

"Almost too ingenious ! very clearly and brightly told." Times Literary Supplement "Very well contrived." Sunday Times "Altogether a skilful tale and a talented first book." Daily News "The most ingenious and absorbingly interesting tale of sensations and mystery we have read for a long time." Bookman "Well written, well proportioned, and full of surprises. Lovers of good stories will, without exception, rejoice in this book." The British Weekly

Product Details

  • File Size: 334 KB
  • Print Length: 208 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Unlimited
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B004UJCK50
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Lending: Not Enabled
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
81 of 87 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Meet Hercule Poirot April 8, 2001
Format:Mass Market Paperback
In 1920 Agatha Christie introduced a quirky little Belgian detective to the world in this book she wrote on a dare from her sister. The time is World War I and Poirot is one of a small group of Belgian refugees who has come to live in a rural English village. With his egg-shaped head and his well-groomed moustache, Poirot enters and soon becomes one of fiction's best-loved detectives. Also in this novel, the reader is introduced to his cohort, Captain Arthur Hastings, recovering from a war injury at the upper-class household known as Styles Court. The mistress of the manor is Emily Inglethorpe, an elderly woman who has just married a much younger man. The family members occupying the house all become suspects when Mrs. Inglethorpe is murdered and it is up to Poirot's little grey cells to sift through all the red herrings and, in the final chapter, reveal all in true detective fashion. High on Poirot's list of suspects are: John Cavendish, the elder stepson; Mary Cavendish, his wife; Lawrence Cavendish, the younger stepson; Evelyn Howard, Mrs. Inglethorpe's companion; Cynthia Murdoch, her protegee; and Dr. Bauerstein, a mysterious stranger who lives in Essex. All have motive and opportunity but only Poirot can discover the truth.
This first novel sets the tone for many Christies to follow. The wealthy family inhabiting a country house, the non-violent method of murder (poisoning) so favored by Mrs. Christie, and the light-hearted but often serious romance all became hallmarks of many of her later works.
Have a cup of hot chocolate with Poirot and enjoy the adventure.
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35 of 36 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Flawed Kindle Edition November 2, 2011
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This review applies only to the Kindle edition.

There are illustrations which are essential to the plot and referenced in the text. They are missing from this edition. I had to find another copy in order to finish the book. Very disappointed in the lack of quality in this release.
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35 of 37 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The start of one of the best mystery series ever May 4, 2011
By Jetpack
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
"Poirot was an extraordinary looking little man. He was hardly more than five feet, four inches, but carried himself with great dignity. His head was exactly the shape of an egg, and he always perched it a little on one side. His moustache was very stiff and military." I love the description of Poirot. This is the start of one of the best sets of mysteries ever made - the first appearance of the celebrated Belgian detective, Hercule Poirot.

Poirot is interesting for many reasons, one of the first that he was a famous detective as a member of the Belgian police force. Due to WW I, Poirot has to move to England as a refugee, and remains. It's also the first appearance of Capt. Hastings, the sometimes narrator of the stories.

Wonderful characters, great story. Easy 5 stars.

This is the free Kindle version. A must get if you like mysteries.
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23 of 23 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Agatha still shines, Kindle's version not so much September 6, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I have always loved Christie's books for quick and fun entertainment. Although I used to own her entire published works in English, I lost my whole collection years ago to severe water damage. Recently, I was talked into buying a Kindle (reluctantly--I still like the heft, smell and feel of a paper book) and I was pleased to see this book was available at the best price ever: free.

However, I was extremely annoyed when I discovered that there is no attempt to reproduce the many diagrams and pieces of evidence discussed in the book; in fact, there isn't even an acknowledgement that they are completely missing. The story will say something like, "Below is a diagram representing the layout of the house", and below there is absolutely nothing.

It turns out that these diagrams are essential to understanding (or solving on your own) the pivotal murder in the story. For shame! This destroys what Christie has always been known for--being completely fair with clues so that the perceptive reader can often solve much of the mystery right along with Poirot.
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24 of 26 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Poirot's Delightful Debut January 5, 2000
Format:Mass Market Paperback
This is Poirot's first case and Christie's debut as a mystery writer. It is an auspicious start to a brilliant career for both the author and her creation. It's a bit over-ambitious; the young Christie was heavy-handed with the clues in this one, and while the ending is a surprise, the last section of the book is just a bit too long for the ending to have quite the impact that Christie would achieve in later works. This is perhaps the only Christie book about which one can say there are "too many clues;" it is nonetheless an astounding achievement for a first-time author. And, of course, any fan of Poirot will want to read the case that "started it all."
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18 of 20 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars "I had a premonition of approaching evil" June 16, 2005
Format:Mass Market Paperback
Readers everywhere are grateful to the sister of Agatha Christie for placing a bet with her, claiming that the woman that nowadays is known as the Queen of Mystery would not be able to write a good detective story. That is actually how this novel and the character of Hercule Poirot came into existence. In this first effort we can see the basic traits that later established Christie as one of the best mystery writers ever, though some of her technique is not yet completely polished. For example we get only a brief description of each of the characters, except for Poirot, so it is hard to picture some of them clearly. Nevertheless, the story deserves high praise, and I am pretty sure Agatha won the bet!

The story is narrated by Hasting, who gets an invitation to spend some time in the country place of John Cavendish at Styles Court. Upon his arrival, Hasting notices that there is a certain level of tension in the family, since John's mother, Emily, has recently married a younger man, who the family considers to be a fortune hunter. Meanwhile, John and his brother Lawrance are having financial trouble, and a set of interesting characters surround Emily and have all kinds of suggesting exchanges with her. When the lady of the house is murdered it comes as no surprise. There is a main suspect, but also a myriad of possible candidates for the role of the killer.

Luckily, Hasting runs into Poirot at the time of these events, and the small man with the peculiar moustache, who has retired from the Belgian police, is more than happy to help solve the baffling case. Those that have read other novels by Christie know that the author has an outstanding ability to mislead us into believing we have discovered the culprit, only to turn the tables on us and leave us dumbstruck. This case is no different...Ahhh, those little grey cells!
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Guilty Pleasure
The Mysterious Affair at Styles was my first introduction to Agatha Christie as a young teenager. I loved it and was hooked on mysteries ever after, especially "the golden... Read more
Published 2 days ago by Arelle
1.0 out of 5 stars Unacceptable
Good book, of course, but basically unreadable: random line lengths, line breaks in the middle of sentences, etc... Read more
Published 3 days ago by Amazon Customer
4.0 out of 5 stars Good but not as good as some of Chtisties other works
I guess I'm just used to Christies books and not just her short stories.
Anyway it was a good read.
Published 12 days ago by Lawrence Henson
5.0 out of 5 stars Mystery Lover
This book is a must-read. There is much suspension and excitement in the book. I was hooked from the beginning. I just couldn't put it down.
Published 16 days ago by shannon bongers
4.0 out of 5 stars The Mysterious Affair at Styles
Though I am not a dedicated fan of Hercule Poroit, I enjoyed this episode.
It was not truly obvious early on "whodunit". Read more
Published 23 days ago by mysteryreader
1.0 out of 5 stars Crimes Against the Apostrophe
Apparently the publishers of the reissue of this old favorite did not have access to the original plates, so they set a first week keyboarding student to retype it for extra... Read more
Published 24 days ago by Lise Rosenthal
2.0 out of 5 stars book in irregular format
this book is not printed in the normal manner. the result is that you have to hold the book sideways to what is normal. Read more
Published 26 days ago by jwwoods
4.0 out of 5 stars First time fan
It was interesting and fun to match wits with the author. I will definitely read more of her fascinating stories.
Published 1 month ago by Andrea
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book, great value
I've been looking for inexpensive editions of my paper library favorites for my Kindle. This edition is inexpensive and complete. Read more
Published 1 month ago by P. Hennessey
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Intro To The Great Hercule Poirot!
Fantastic! You feel like you've known Hercule Poirot your whole life! Agatha Christie is a gem! Can't wait to read the other books!
Published 1 month ago by Jacqueline Cheng
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More About the Author

Agatha Christie was born in 1890 and created the detective Hercule Poirot in her debut novel, The Mysterious Affair at Styles (1920). She achieved wide popularity with The Murder of Roger Ackroyd (1926) and produced a total of eighty novels and short-story collections over six decades.

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