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Old 12-16-2012, 09:03 AM   #16
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That's actually one fascinating thing I've discovered thanks to having an e-reader and old public domain books - English has not really changed at all in the last 100 years or so.
It's not really changed in the last 200+ years. You'll find that, if you read the novels of Jane Austen (one of my favourite authors), it's pretty much indistinguishable from today's English. There'll be words you don't understand relating to things like different types of horse-drawn carriage (of which there were a bewildering variety!), and there'll be a few spellings which have slightly changed (eg "shew" instead of "show", "stopt" instead of "stopped"), but overall you won't have the slightest difficulty in understanding the language.
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Old 12-16-2012, 11:07 AM   #17
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And Then There Were None is a great Christie to start with! And it's an all-time mystery classic. It's without a doubt, far and away, my favourite of the books I've read by her.
I'd agree completely that "And Then There Were None" is a great place to start - it's one of my two favourite Christies (along with "The Murder of Roger Ackroyd").

Having said that, you can't really go too far wrong with any of them - the language isn't difficult and they all have their merits.

/JB
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Old 12-16-2012, 12:24 PM   #18
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I'd agree completely that "And Then There Were None" is a great place to start - it's one of my two favourite Christies (along with "The Murder of Roger Ackroyd".
I keep reading how good The Murder of Roger Ackroyd is. I have to read it. It's part of the Hercule Poirot series. I have a question, do I have to read Agatha Christie's Hercule Poirot/Miss Marple series in order? Can I read The Murder of Roger Ackroyd even though I haven't read the earlier books in the series?
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Old 12-16-2012, 02:16 PM   #19
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I keep reading how good The Murder of Roger Ackroyd is. I have to read it. It's part of the Hercule Poirot series. I have a question, do I have to read Agatha Christie's Hercule Poirot/Miss Marple series in order? Can I read The Murder of Roger Ackroyd even though I haven't read the earlier books in the series?
Personally, I would read more of the other Poirot/Hastings novels first before reading the Roger Ackroyd book. I think the latter would be best appreciated after becoming familiar with the two sleuths.
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Old 12-17-2012, 02:40 AM   #20
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The Murder of Roger Ackroyd is the third Poirot. It probably isn't really necessary to read them in order, but there are only two to read beforehand.
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Old 12-17-2012, 03:26 AM   #21
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The Murder of Roger Ackroyd is the third Poirot. It probably isn't really necessary to read them in order, but there are only two to read beforehand.
The fourth, to be strictly accurate:

1. The Mysterious Affair at Styles (1920)
2. The Murder on the Links (1923)
3. Poirot Investigates (1924)
4. The Murder of Roger Ackroyd (1926)

"Poirot Investigates" is a short story collection, so it is the third novel.

I would suggest reading "The Mysterious Affair at Styles"; it's an excellent introduction to Poirot.
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Old 12-17-2012, 03:27 AM   #22
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The Murder of Roger Ackroyd is the third Poirot. It probably isn't really necessary to read them in order, but there are only two to read beforehand.
Oh bugger! I read it back in the 70's, and could have sworn that Poirot's sidekick was Hastings in that book. Okay, that's the last thing I ever say about an Agatha Christie book on this board. My memory is too suspect.
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Old 12-17-2012, 03:50 AM   #23
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The fourth, to be strictly accurate:

1. The Mysterious Affair at Styles (1920)
2. The Murder on the Links (1923)
3. Poirot Investigates (1924)
4. The Murder of Roger Ackroyd (1926)

"Poirot Investigates" is a short story collection, so it is the third novel.

I would suggest reading "The Mysterious Affair at Styles"; it's an excellent introduction to Poirot.
In that case, I will read the previous three. I just downloaded The Mysterious Affair at Styles, I just discovered that it's free on Project Gutenberg along with Secret Adversary
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Old 12-17-2012, 04:00 AM   #24
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In that case, I will read the previous three. I just downloaded The Mysterious Affair at Styles, I just discovered that it's free on Project Gutenberg along with Secret Adversary
It is ONLY out of copyright in the United States. The UAE has a "life+50" copyright term so the book is very much still in copyright there, since Agatha Christie died in 1976.

The "Project Gutenberg" site does ask you to check the copyright status in your own country before downloading.

Last edited by HarryT; 12-17-2012 at 04:03 AM.
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Old 12-17-2012, 06:16 AM   #25
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If you have access to a public library, you might find a good collection of Agatha Christie books there to read and not have to worry about copyrights. The ones that I have checked out always had a wait list, so be prepared for that. But it's worth the wait, her books are enjoyable reads.
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Old 12-19-2012, 05:02 AM   #26
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But it's worth the wait, her books are enjoyable reads.
True, except for "Cat among the pigeons". Not that good, for me at least. I had my Agatha Christie marathon overdose this summer, I think I read 13 in a row and then I had enough. As a non English I found her wording excellent, the way sentences are built is sheer pleasure to read and can't remember when I last read such delightful language (from which you can even benefit I believe)
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Old 12-19-2012, 05:20 PM   #27
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I went on an Agatha Christie binge this past spring and summer, too. Love her books!
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Old 12-22-2012, 04:43 AM   #28
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I was finaly able to start reading "and then there were none" and it is indeed easily readable modern language. I enjoy it very much so far.
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Old 12-22-2012, 05:36 AM   #29
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I was finaly able to start reading "and then there were none" and it is indeed easily readable modern language. I enjoy it very much so far.
That's great to hear!
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Old 12-22-2012, 05:53 AM   #30
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I was finaly able to start reading "and then there were none" and it is indeed easily readable modern language. I enjoy it very much so far.
I can tell you who did it

Spoiler:
Just kidding!
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