Wednesday, January 9, 2019
A Review of Agatha Christie: A Mysterious Life, by Laura Thompson
I can't recommend a ton of author biographies. I'm not enticed enough to pick up a lot of them.
Even this one, love her works as I do, intimidated me and I passed it over countless times in my busy Summer. The book is a honker, as it should be, but it's a giant and not a light read in any way.
But that's fine because the book is just as fascinating as I imagined it was.
It takes snippets of Christie's works and aligns them with her life experiences to show you where it came from, which is pretty amazing. You do have to get used to the pacing of that, though, so give yourself time to adjust if at first that's disorienting.
I really enjoyed reading about her young life, especially because I have three children (Agatha was the youngest of three) and how her family interacted with her and how she perceived the world and people around her from an early age was really interesting to think about. Obviously, her older life as she became more prolific is fascinating. And I love that she came back from her disappearance and from a terrible marriage to continue to create and go on to marry a better person. It's a mysterious comeback. It's wonderful to read the curves that the track of her life ran all the way to the end.
While I don't have a long list of author biographies to recommend, I can fully recommend this one to fans of Agatha Christie's work and to other authors. We need to read books like this, even if it might be out of our genre range.
There is something magic about connecting with a writer who is long gone and feeling less alone for it.