Agatha Christie: A Companion to the Mystery Fiction

McFarland. (McFarland Companions to Mystery Fiction, Bk. 12). Aug. 2022. 456p. ed. by Elizabeth Foxwell. ISBN 9781476676203. pap. $49.95. REF
Writing and compiling an encyclopedic companion about the “Queen of Crime” is no small feat. Bernthal (Agatha Christie Goes to War) with series editor Foxwell (Dorothy L. Sayers) have researched and compiled an impressive companion to Agatha Christie’s oeuvre. Starting with a brief biography, it delves into Christie’s career chronology, and her works in alphabetical order, from the first publication and performance. Then there’s the companion work, which includes entries for Christie’s novels, short stories, scripts, memoirs, articles, interviews, letters, characters, fictional locations, real people, and more. Avid mystery readers will likely enjoy perusing this work, and researchers will appreciate how thorough it is. The author and editor have accomplished something unique: a reference work that is approachable and accessible for library workers, scholars, and general readers.
VERDICT This volume is well-researched, not to mention thorough and well-presented. Given the breadth of Christie’s life and work, it would be a worthwhile addition to an academic or public library collection.
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