Monday, 15 September 2008
Happy Birthday, Agatha
Today is the anniversary of Agatha Christie's birth in 1890 and, although I've got a little sidetracked by Allingham, I am still reading my way through her books; I shall have to try launching a raid on the library shortly, as I only have one or two left on my TBR pile. Reading several in short succession, I've realised what a good writer she was – her dialogue in particular in excellent, and is often funny. And as I've said before, I am a huge fan of Miss Marple, who was apparently based on Christie's grandmother.
This morning it was announced on Radio 4 that Christie's grandson has found a collection of 27 half-hour tapes, made while she was working on her autobiography, in which she talks about her writing. And last night there was a new episode in the long-running ITV series with David Suchet, an adaptation of Mrs McGinty's Dead. I still have that to watch, as we were actually watching a 2006 episode last night, Taken at the Flood; it was high melodrama, quite dark and rather good – Poirot is without any of his usual sidekicks, although the local inspector is delighted to play that role. The house party that Poirot attends is a delightful collection of grotesques, with Celia Imrie relishing her part as one of the grasping family. Most of the Poirot novels and stories have now been televised with Suchet as the detective, with the likelihood of the set being completed in the future – there is only a handful of novels and a collection of short stories left now. It took me a while to warm to Suchet as Poirot but, now that I have, I find myself eagerly looking forward to them.