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4.3 out of 5 stars103
4.3 out of 5 stars
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on 31 May 2000
You do not have to be a fan of Agatha Christie's books to enjoy this book.Despite being called "An Autobiography" it is really more a book of the parts of her life which she wanted to remember. She tells in great detail about her childhood and early life, and remembers many humerous and inconsequential events. This is what makes the book such a joy to read. You do not get blow by blow narrative of events but muses on servants,food and interesting people.The book tells of a world that has dissapeared.the book is incredibly easy to read as it flows well and the events in it are most interesting, like a trip around the world and tales of archelogical digs in the desert. All in all a great read.
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on 15 February 2006
I've always been a huge Agatha Christie fan and so was delighted to finally get a copy of her autobiography to read. It doesn't disappointment. Her natural talent for writing makes it a lovely, relaxing read. She led, by comparison to some, a fairly uneventful life but the joy that she takes in recalling anecdotes and her attention to detail make it fascinating anyway. It's also interesting to read some of the background to some of her books, and to occasionally pick up on her inspirations for particular characters and plotlines. Highly recommended for any fan.
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on 21 March 2002
There are literaly thousands of autobiographical books on the market - so why should this one stand out? I found the beauty of this book to be the fact that it was actually written by the author - rather than ghostwritten as so many autobiographies are. As well as giving a fascinating insight into Victorian England, Agatha Christie explains how she formulated the plots to many of her most sucessful works - including The Mousetrap. In addition, as a very well travelled lady, the book gives detailed accounts of travel throughout the middle east and archealogical expeditions with her second husband Max in the years around the second world war.
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on 17 January 2010
If you are an Agatha Christie fan or even if you aren't you should read this book. In this day and age when everyone is trying to BE something or someone with very little self awareness it is lovely to read this autobiography that details a life lived and a profound self awareness brought on through reflecting on the events that shaped her life.

The beautiful sense that I took away from this autobiography was of a woman deeply touched by life and her part in it. She has such a refreshing attitude of knowing that she was not the best writer in the world but what she could do she did VERY well and enjoyed doing it. The hours and hours of reading pleasure she has given me are explained in a book that takes its time, details minutely certain events and sensations while leaving out what was sensationalist (her disappearance) or unimportant to her.

It is a fascinating read that opens a door on another world and life while celebrating the small events that shaped that life and the large ones that made life worth living so well for Agatha Christie. Cannot recommend this book enough!
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on 8 May 2010
For those who are Christie's fans and have read all or most of her books this is the best way to understand why she wrotte this or that in some of them. And for those who are just getting to know her, this could be a good way to learn more about one of the most important writters that has ever been in the world and maybe they will get corius about her book's stories.
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on 8 April 2011
Words fail me for this book. It is an absolutely fantastic read - and I am not one for superlatives. You do not need to be an avid fan of Agatha Christie novels. In fact reading this autobiography you get to understand why some of her novels are more engaging than others. Her background is thoroughly explored and the Victorian attitudes and day-to-day way of living are very revealing. I have read and re-read the book over the years giving copies of the book as presents to anyone I felt could benefit from it. If you never read any of her detective books at all you could benefit from reading this book. She carried her early home life with her all through her life - the good and the bad. The last few pages are very sad - but I won't reveal the ending of course. You will not be disappointed.
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on 12 August 2003
An interesting and authentic insight in the life of the famous author Agatha Christie, including the story how she became an author. Born at end of the 19th century the changings in habits of life she shows us were amazing! She let us uderstand the life of the late Victorian age (represented by her grandmothers), give us a look how servents where treated and respected, let us understand a time which is so far away from our actual life that it's hardly to believe it was only yesterday. Have a look at bathing and swimming habits and the great transformations they've been to.
Easy to read, a book you'll love to put on your bedside table!
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on 18 August 2011
I'm not a brilliant reader, it can take me ages to read a book. This book is interesting and wowed me, because her life was so different to mine. To me this was how the "other half live/lived". I know she had money problems at times, but there is poor and "poor."

The people she met were all interesting. The places she went were fascinating. Her education so diverse.

I loved the fact that her brother was not a very capable man, who she and her sister looked after. Some of her insights into human nature helped me to understand some of my own life. For although we are/were very differently placed in society, her humaness still came through.

I loved the "matter of fact" attitude she had to life, especially having to live through two world wars. What a chacter and a blessing to us. What a lovely gift of all her stories she has left us and future generations.

I remain a fan....
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on 12 January 2009
I have watched films based on her stories and read her books for years but I never expected her real life story to be so interesting and full of twists and turns. What's more the way this book is written makes it a true joy and I'd recommend it to anyone whether a fan of her books or not. This is a warm and heartfelt memoir that seems fresh and contemporary even if it was written almost half a century ago.
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on 15 August 2013
Christie's autobiography is as good as promised; she wrote autobiography as well as she wrote her mysteries. It is a bit disappointing that she says nothing about her famous disappearance, but everyone has a right to some privacy. Perhaps the book's greatest value is as a firsthand account of late Victorian society. The perceptions and morality are stunningly different to those of our current era. Christie denied ever being rich, and considered herself very "hard up" for the early years of her marriage, and yet she never in her life employed fewer than two servants and she owned eight houses by the time she was in her late thirties. The comments on sexual mores match what I have read of French society of the same era: a woman must be a virgin on her wedding night, but a man must have prior sexual experience to bring to his marriage bed. Both cultures therefore required either a class of prostitutes who never married or infidelity by married women (and had both), and everyone accepted this as perfecty normal and moral! It makes me wonder what WE will look like to OUR grandchildren.
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