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The Mystery of Mrs. Christie: A Novel Audio CD – Unabridged, February 23, 2021
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About the Author
Once a New York City lawyer, Marie Benedict had long dreamed about a fantastical job unraveling the larger mysteries of the past as an archaeologist or historian -- before she tried her hand at writing. While drafting her first book, she realized that she could excavate the possible truths lurking in history through fiction, and has done so in THE OTHER EINSTEIN, the story of Mileva Maric, Albert Einstein's first wife and a physicist herself, and CARNEGIE'S MAID, the story of a brilliant woman who may have spurred Andrew Carnegie toward philanthropy. Her upcoming novel, THE ONLY WOMAN IN THE ROOM, will release in January of 2019. She is a graduate of Boston College and the Boston University School of Law, and lives in Pittsburgh with her family.
NICOLA BARBER has appeared on stage in New York and across the country, including with Scarlett Johnansson in The Nanny Diaries. She holds a degree in theatre arts from UNC-Chapel Hill, and has taken classes at the London Academy of Dramatic Art. She has been training and performing voiceovers since 2001, and can be heard in video games, animation, commercials, and corporate videos, as well as on award-winning audiobooks.
- Publisher : Audible Studios on Brilliance Audio; Unabridged edition (February 23, 2021)
- Language : English
- ISBN-10 : 1713601281
- ISBN-13 : 978-1713601289
- Item Weight : 2.64 ounces
- Dimensions : 5.3 x 0.5 x 6.7 inches
- Best Sellers Rank: #1,419,823 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
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Top reviews from the United States
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The book's author is certainly not objective, portraying her heroine as suffering and blighted and Archie as selfish and brutal. But really, what mother of a supposed beloved child would carefully stage a disappearance in which murder seems the likeliest outcome? She had family and lifelong friends. What were they to believe?
Agatha Christie refused to mention the lost days in her own autobiography, as if to pretend that this incident didn't exist would make it so. Her personal life continued to be marred by marital unhappiness. Her second marriage to a much younger man lasted until.her death. She poured out financial resources to make her new archeologist husband successful and famous. He rewarded her enormous support by engaging in an affair that lasted decades, and which Agatha tolerated in order to avoid a second divorce. Really very sad.
The puzzle of Mrs. Christie’s missing eleven days has persisted to this day. Mrs. Christie herself even skips that period in her life in her autobiography. Ms. Benedict has taken on the task of imagining what happened to Agatha at this time in her life and failing marriage. The story is written intertwining two timelines; one immediately following Agatha’s disappearance and the investigation that follows told by Archie Christie and the other starting as the young Agatha falls in love with the dashing Colonel Archibald Christie before WWI and takes the couple up to the disappearance told by Agatha Christie.
I enjoyed this story immensely! I have never personally believed in the amnesia story or the story that the disappearance was for publicity for her new book. Mrs. Christie was a woman with a brilliant mind and Ms. Benedict’s historical fiction rendition makes so much more sense to me. In the 1920’s, women had so little power and I love to think of Agatha getting her due before her divorce. (PLEASE NOTE: if you have not read “The Murder of Roger Ackroyd” this book does give away the ending.)
I highly recommend this compelling historical fiction featuring Agatha Christie!
Author, Marie Benedict, is a consummate writer of historical fiction and it shows in this biofic novel about the 11 days the great mystery writer, Agatha Christie, disappeared from her life. Benedict did due diligence with research and combined it with her fiction writers prowess to craft a story that is unique and reminiscent of the great puzzlers Christie is famous for.
Bouncing back and forth between the “current day”, (or those 11 days in 1926 when Christie was missing), and the past timeline begins with Agatha meeting Archie Christie, her husband to be, at a dance in 1912, is done very well. This past timeline tells of their relationship and nudges forward throughout the book until the two are drawn together for the ending and the current focuses solely on the investigation into her disappearance.
Characters are well developed and the dialogue is appropriate for both the time period and the players. There’s no foul language, violence or sexual content to speak of. Benedict is deft with prose and even tho’ it’s minimal in this book, there is a good sense of time and place.
Construction of this book is very purposeful and at times the plotting feels like plodding. I suspect that’s intentional and done in homage to Ms. Christie but during the middle days of the investigation, the story became a tad laborious. It was a good ride thru the ending when emotions kicked in and the mystery was revealed.
If you’re a lover of classic mysteries and unusual puzzlers, this one’s for you📚
Top reviews from other countries
As a member of the Royal Flying Corps, Agatha's husband Archie Christie fought for his country in World War One and deserves respect for this. Benedict's statement, "I expected that the Archie who returned from the war would be the same Archie who had left for it" underpins an emotional lack of maturity and perception that permeates the entire book in which Archie is unfairly portrayed as a social misfit despite being a successful businessman and high-flyer who had a number of titled family members and friends.
Moreover, the book takes the clichéd view - which is typical of a lot of romantic fiction - that the man is always the villain of the piece and the woman is his long suffering and thankless victim. This is very much a one-side account of a marriage breakdown and a badly told one at that
Benedict is a young and up coming lawyer, so I was expecting a very exact treatment of Christie's disappearance, but her book is riddled with silly errors. She tells us on page 26 that Archie's father died in England, then contradicts herself on page 93 saying Archie's father died in India.
As someone who lives near Ealing in London, I have visited the graves of Agatha's mother, her father, her sister and Auntie-Grannie at Ealing cometary so why does Benedict tell us that the funeral of Agatha's mother took place in Torquay, Devon, where she was subsequently buried?
According to Benedict, in August 1919 Auntie-Grannie was still alive and joyfully anticipating the birth of Agatha's only daughter Rosalind, but Auntie-Grannie died on 29 May 1919 before Rosalind was born. Check out her grave at Ealing.
Benedict claims that Mrs Belcher accompanied her husband Major Belcher on the 1922 Empire Tour which is highly odd considering he was a bachelor at this time and only married for the first time in 1926.
I won't waste readers' time listing the many other factual errors.
Christie was 36 when she disappeared, but Benedict portrays her as a bratty 20 something a la the TV series Gossip Girl. Instead of reading about Christie the person, I found myself reading about Benedict acting the role of Christie and imposing her feelings and emotions on her which led to an unauthentic experience.
If you want to know about Agatha's marriage break-up to Archie, I would highly recommend 'Unfinished Portrait' which she published under the non de plume of Mary Westmacott. It's written with genuine charm, perception, poignancy and heartbreak that at times is so raw it almost becomes embarrassing to read owing to its first hand experience.
Benedict's lack-lustre book doesn't really have an ending. It's simply all about the worm turning and telling her husband off while assuming the moral high ground despite not standing on it. Having paid £20 for Benedict's book I sadly don't feel I got my money's worth. For those of us who care about Christie as a person, Benedict's book soon descends into drivel and poses the question: is it possible to expect too much of historical fiction? Should we expect it to be factual?
Um mistério que até hoje não foi resolvido, o único mistério da vida real, o desaparecimento, por 11 dias, da Autora.
Com capítulos alternantes de um lado começamos em 1912, quando Christie conhece o marido, e 1926, simultaneamente, na noite de seu desaparecimento. Ambos os tempos se desenvolvem até encontrarem um ponto em comum na parte 2, no momento que a encontram.
Vemos dois tipos de narração, uma, em primeira pessoa, narrada por Christie, e outra, em terceira, mostrando o que se passava na investigação, principalmente envolvendo a figura de Archie Christie.
Uma obra extremamente informativa mas que entretém também, vemos todo o rebuliço causado pelo desaparecimento da autora, que foi investigado por dois chefes de polícia, contou com buscas pela Inglaterra e envolveu até a ajuda do autor de Sherlock Holmes, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, para encontrá-la.
Vemos também um pouco da sua situação matrimonial e momentos pivotais na vida da autora como seu casamento, suas primeiras publicações, quando ela se junta ao corpo de enfermeiras durante a guerra, o nascimento de sua filha e a morte de sua mãe.
Incrivelmente bem escrita, The Mystery of Mrs. Christie, é uma obra que completa com ficção as lacunas presentes na vida real e traz um desfecho interessante, plausível e incrível para a história!