Fun read! Especially if you are a big fan of Agatha Christie. It made me love her all the more and want to take up reading all of her books again!
Thank you to NetGalley for providing a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. I think Marie Benedict is a great author of historical fiction and I also enjoy Agatha Christie's novels. In early December 1926, after fighting with her husband who wanted a divorce, Agatha disappears for eleven days. Publicly there has never been an explanation for this disappearance. There are a couple of different novelizations about this disappearance and I've read a couple of them now. I believe this one is probably the least far fetched explanation of that disappearance although again we will probably never know why she truly vanished herself. It was certainly intentional and she did claim amnesia but I don't believe that. I think she did this very much on purpose as she has proven with her novel writing that she certainly has the mind for planning something like this. The novel was quick and quite enjoyable although I have a very low opinion of her husband after reading this novel, based on the true facts alone. And the ended was revealed in a delightfully Agatha Christie way.. My only criticism is that I was left feeling slightly letdown by the explanation and wish it had a little more wow to it.
A bit anticlimactic, but a much more plausible explanation than that weirdly sexed up account that came out somewhere around the same time.
I am obsessed with Agatha Christie and I will read any book about her fictional or non-fictional. Well, this wasn't my favorite fictionalized account it was still enjoyable!
Although fiction, this book reads more like a nonfiction with great character development. This is a great mystery for readers of that genre.
One of my favorite authors writing about one of my favorite authors. Once again, Ms. Benedict both educates and entertains. Highly recommend!
I'm a huge Agatha Christie fan so I really wanted to love this, but it was just okay to me. Having never read any biographies of Agatha Christie, nor her autobiography, I'm not sure how much the author's depiction of her coincides with the reality of her circumstances, but somehow this wasn't the vision of Agatha that I had in MY head. While I initially felt sympathetic towards the plight of her marital troubles, Agatha's attempts to please Archie become rather tiresome at some point, with the ending seeming as a rather out-of-character about-face.
Again, I'll have to read more about the actual known facts of her life to make a better conclusion, but my impression of Agatha Christie's disappearance is rather simple and not at all mysterious -- I think she was heartbroken and just needed some space for awhile to get her shit together as she mourned the dissolution of her marriage. Maybe she hoped that by failing to tell anyone where she was going or why, that she would make Archie sick with worry, but that's about as devious as I think the whole thing might have been. Am I giving her too little credit? I guess we'll never know, but the hypothetical explanation presented here didn't ring true for me, either.
I'll read a biography of Christie (or maybe her autobiography) and see if it makes me change my mind about this book.
Agatha Christie’s greatest mystery was one she lived herself. She disappeared for two weeks in December of 1926, and to this day, no one knows what happened. In The Mystery of Mrs. Christie, Marie Benedict provides a unique twist in a fictional version of what happened.
When Agatha Christie, now the most famous mystery novelist ever, disappeared, her car was found at the edge of a pond, with the only clues left behind being tire tracks nearby and her fur coat left in the car. It was a cold night so the coat seemed especially odd. Could she have possibly killed herself? Her husband Archie, a World War I veteran, had not been home when she went missing and had no idea what might have happened. Her disappearance unleashed an unprecedented manhunt to find her. Even Arthur Conan Doyle got involved. When she is finally found, she claims to have amnesia and provides no explanation for her disappearance.
In The Mystery of Mrs. Christie, the story is told in dual timelines, alternating chapters. One follows her husband throughout her disappearance and is told in present tense. The other chapters start when Agatha and Archie first meet and follows their rocky relationship. These chapters are told in past tense and are labeled, “The Manuscript.” Both timelines come together in the end with a marvelous twist that would do Agatha Christie proud.
For an Agatha Christie fan this was a must read! The format Marie has used in telling this story was unique and kept me turning the pages, wondering how much of this was based on facts that Marie had researched, and how much was pure fiction. It also made me want to find out more for myself. I highly recommend this book to any Agatha Christie fan, and other mystery readers will enjoy it as well as it is a good mystery all on its own. But be warned, if you are new to Agatha Christie there are a few spoilers to some of her most famous books.
Such a pleasant and intriguing story based on a true-in-life mystery! Agatha Christie is an icon in writing circles to this day, but also remains a bit of a mystery in her private life... by design! Marie Benedict uses her immense talents of research and creative writing to piece together a storyline with historic references in such a way that readers believe they are experiencing Mrs. Christie's true life disappearance in "real time" with all the usual moments of anxiety and curiosity when missing a loved one. Excellent, entertaining read.
I liked this book--for many reasons. I recently read and enjoyed both Carnegie's Maid (my favorite of the three mentioned here) and Lady Clementine, so I was only too happy to volunteer to review this title. I had no prior knowledge of Mrs. Christie's own life mystery. I wasn't too far into the story before I found myself looking up the historical details--I couldn't resist! I liked the story being told in chapters related by two different voices. I was surprised in the very short Part Two as to one of those two voices--my detective skills were not sharp enough to catch the tell. I admire Marie Benedict for crafting a story about women who are known, yet not known, and then filling in the unknowns. She may be right, and she may be wrong, but my enjoyment of the possibilities that she gives her characters is great.
This is a very quick read--don't miss it!
Marie Benedict is a go to historical fiction author for me and I will read anything she writes. This latest by her did not disappoint and was once again filled with all of the things that make Benedict a HF queen!
I feel like I should start this review saying that I’ve never read as Agatha Christie book so there was a disconnect there, especially as far as relating to the various books of hers that were mentioned in the story. However, that did not at all dampen my enjoyment of this book! To me is was like reading about another historical figure that I only came to know and understand through the story itself, and honestly by the time I turned the last page here, I’ve been so ready to dive into some Christie! So if you’re in the same boat as me going into this one, don’t let that deter you.
I just adored Benedict’s writing once again and her ability to bring these real people of history’s stories so true to life on the pages. It’s like reading a biography but with a fictional feel, yet right with real time, place, and detail. I don’t know how she does it! This one was clearly well researched and I loved how the mystery element left me thinking and guessing, but also made a lot of sense as a possible explanation for Christie’s 11 day disappearance.
This is a book that you’ll quickly become invested in and have a difficult time putting down, so my best recommendation is to read it on a long weekend when you know you’ll have the time to just sit back and enjoy it!
Thank you so much to NetGalley and Sourcebooks for the gifted e-copy!
This is my first book by Marie Benedict and it won't be my last. I found it an engrossing read and I loved the dual timelines of the beginning of Agatha's and Archie's relationship and the investigation into the disappearance. Agatha has never talked about her disappearance and the true reason is not known, but Benedict's explanation is totally plausible. I loved it.
The reason for the three stars is that in chapter 31, she spoils the ending to The Murder of Roger Ackroyd. There should be a written law that you never spoil the ending to a mystery, especially one as puzzling as that one is.
Overall, a good quick read and a very plausible take on why Agatha disappeared. Recommended for fans of Christie and to lovers of historical fiction.
I loved this book and this author. This is a good way to learn more about Agatha Christie and I found it fascinating! Highly recommend!
I really did enjoy this book, and I don't have anything really bad to say about it. I think the fact that it was based around Agatha Christie made me want absolutely everything to line up perfectly and fall into place. The only reason it didn't receive five stars is because I felt like it missed the mark just a bit. I may have had too high of expectations though so I would recommend taking this review with a grain of salt because while it just didn't quite hit the five star mark for me, it was an excellent book.
The Mystery of Mrs. Christie promises an explanation to the mystery of Agatha Christie's famous disappearance. Over the years, there have been many theories as to what happened back then and I was so intrigued to see what Marie Benedict had in store.
Unfortunately for me, the story fell flat. I wasn't intrigued by the solving of the mystery and the lead up was wordy and flowed at a snail's pace. After trudging through the beginning, the ending fell too flat to be rewarding. The characters were also off. I may have been expecting too much for Agatha and Archie was just insufferable.
This may have been due to my expecting too much, but I was not impressed with this book plot-wise. Aside from being wordy, the writing was rather beautiful. I'd recommend checking out other works by the author, but perhaps skipping this one.
I am a lifelong fan of Agatha Christie's work. I started with "And Then There Were None" in eighth grade, and from that point, have been hooked. I've read several biographies of this great author, and have always been so fascinated by her, especially with the real-life mystery of her disappearance. Marie Benedict does an incredible job with this fictionalized account of her life until she mysteriously disappeared, alongside her husband's reaction to her disappearance and the police case that shook the country at the time.
What I loved most about this book was how well the author highlighted the complexities of Agatha's life. While her fans know her by her work, she so valued her job as wife and mother, and her writing was a way for her to bring in some extra money. She was so much more than her mystery novels, and I was thrilled to get to know her better through this book.
This book was a quick read, and because I was really into it, I read most of it late one night until I fell asleep, and picked it up right where I left off first thing in the morning. Marie Benedict has such a fun and approachable writing style, while it feels like she intimately knows and understands the people she is writing about. I am so excited to have a book to recommend to my teens that love Agatha Christie's work, and I love that even though this is an adult book, there is no reason a teen wouldn't pick it up and gobble it up as voraciously as I did. This book is clean, with no profanity that I recall, and all of the adult relations in are fade-to-black. I highly recommend it and look forward to reading other works by Marie Benedict.
Having recently finished “The Mystery of Mrs. Christie” by Marie Benedict, I am happy to have had the chance for the preview; thank you NetGalley and Sourcebooks Landmark!
This ended up being a very fascinating read, and was definitely more of a "what happened" story than a "who done it" mystery. Alternating chapters between "The Manuscript" and "The Disappearance" was a great way to keep the story flowing quickly. The shared glasses of red wine led to a VERY satisfying conclusion to this interpretation of what may have happened in the lives of the Christie's during those eleven days in December of 1926, and before.
*** I always look forward to Ms. Benedict's author's note and conversation when reading her books. It is the treat at the end; explaining her "mission" and research she has uncovered for each of the women she chooses for her stories.
I have so enjoyed Marie Benedict's other books and loving Agatha Christie I was really looking forward to this one.
Most fans of Mrs. Christie are aware of this episode in her life and it was interesting to see these events play out in a fictional way.
Thoroughly enjoyable and will be suggested for my next book club selection.
I have read a lot of Agatha Christie books but I never really knew much about the eleven days she went missing and I still really don’t.
This books looks at the first marriage of Christie and the unhappiness that surrounded that union. Her husband becomes a sort of suspect to her missing, but we never find out what really happened. Was she setting him up, was she doing research for a book, did she need a break from her life. I guess we will never know!
This is my 3rd novel by Marie Benedict and I have really enjoyed the previous two. Her books tend to focus on women in history that don't get a lot of love from other authors and gives us a window into what their lives were like. In this book, the story of Agatha Christie unfolds from her days as a young woman about to debut, to falling in love with her husband Archibald Christie to the beginnings of her phenomenal writing career. The book focuses on the 12 days Agatha disappeared and cleverly hypothesizes what could have happened by laying the entire story out just like one of her beloved mystery novels. There were a few bits I thought were a bit dramatic and my feminist sensibilities were grating against her singular focus on her cad of a husband. I did enjoy this book though. Admittedly I did not know much about Agatha Christie other than I like her books and she wrote a whole lot of them. It was fun and the plot twist was smart.