The Creative Process of Agatha Christie

My brief treatise on AGATHA CHRISTIE’S SECRET NOTEBOOKS – as self-explanatory a title as you’re going to get – appears this week in the Barnes & Noble Review. The book is the culmination of many years of research by John Curran, clearly Christie’s “most ardent and jovial fan”, as I termed him, and also an astute detective in his own right. Not only does he pinpoint a more accurate date for when Christie wrote the last Miss Marple book, SLEEPING MURDER, but he unearthed two previously unpublished stories and makes them available for the first time.

If you are at all a geek about writers and their creative processes, this is a must-read. But more importantly I think it adds much-needed gravitas to Christie’s body of work, too often dismissed as lightweight or trifle. Many of the books fall under those categories, to be sure, but they would have sold in the nine figures if they didn’t have some storytelling heft.