Review: And Then There Were None by Agatha Christie (her highest selling book)

And Then There Were None is Agatha Christie's most popular novel. In fact, I did a bit of research (ie. looked up Wikipedia) and was informed that is actually one of the best selling novels of all time.

It was originally published as Ten Little Niggers, but given the clear racist meaning behind this title, it was renamed in the 60s as And Then There Were None.

Eight different and otherwise unknown to each other people are invited by an old acquaintance to stay on Indian Island (originally Nigger Island). When they arrive, they discover that although there are two additional people on the island, the help, their host has yet to arrive. The boat that took them there has left and they find themselves stranded. Each person has the poem "Ten Little Niggers" framed on the wall of their room. On their first evening there, they discover that they have been trapped on an island by a person determined to kill them all one by one – and that person must be one of their number. And yet, at the close of the book, all ten people are dead.

Who killed them?

I was very taken by this story and had absolutely no idea until it was revealed at the end who the murderer could possibly have been. It was certainly very creative story telling on Miss Christie's part, but I can't help but wonder what makes it the most popular of all her books, to the point where it is one of the highest selling books of all time? It certainly has a lot of murders, more so than any other of her books. And it has one of the trickiest endings to figure out in my view. But I missed having a central detective to follow around as they attempted to solve the crime.

For myself, there are other books I have enjoyed more than this one. I think though I am a little biased toward the Hercule Poirot novels, I just can't help myself.

6.5 / 8
Really enjoyable and well written, couldn't put it down. I would recommend it.

Is this Agatha Christie one of your favourites and what's your theory about why this one might be her most popular novel?


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