Decoding Agatha Christie [Infographic]

2 min read


2 min read


Agatha Christie is one of the most influential crime writers ever.

Her work has been adapted into films, TV shows, and plays – in fact, at the Grand, we’ll have The Mousetrap showing soon!

Come join us between 22nd July and 27th July 2019 to see this amazing story come to life.

Agatha Christie | Blackpool Grand

With work translated into 103 languages and famous characters like Hercule Poirot and Miss Marple, Agatha Christie is an acclaimed writer. Using Simple, middle-range language that is repeated throughout her work, Agatha Christie’s detective novels have seen many adaptations.

From murder and mystery, she takes us through scintillating whodunnits in which we can’t help but try to find the murderer.

But could you spot the killer in one of her novels?

How Agatha Christie Wrote

The Plotting Method

  1. Finding the murder, killer, and purpose
  2. The suspects and their intents
  3. The potential clues and red herrings

The Key Events

  1. A body is found early on
  2. A few suspects are presented
  3. The detective arrives
  4. Red herrings to throw you off
  5. The killer is found

The Plot Devices

  • The Disguise
  • The Discredited Witness
  • The Least Likely Suspect
  • Intuition
  • The Locked Room
  • Servants and Employees
  • The Big Reveal

How To Spot a Killer

Poirot as Detective

  • If the victim dies by stabbing, you’ll find the killer mentioned more in the beginning

Miss Marple as Detective

  • If the motive is money or an affair, you’ll find the killer mentioned more in the ending

The Victim

  • Typically connected to the killer by blood or marriage
  • Death by strangulation or stabbing suggests a killer doctor

The Clues

  • Meet the killer in the first 20% of the book
  • Key Clue is unveiled around halfway point
  • Clue of little relevance is often ‘interesting’
  • Clue of high relevance is often described simply

Male Killer

  • Victim is strangled to death
  • Higher levels of positive or neutral sentiment
  • Comeuppance through reasoning and logic
  • Nautical or air mode of transportation

Female Killer

  • 75% chance when the novel is set in a country home
  • Higher negative sentiment
  • Discovery of a domestic item
  • Land mode of transportation, like train or car

Did You Know?

  • The Mysterious Affair at Styles, her first novel, was written on a dare.
  • Hercule Poirot was based on a Belgium man Agatha Christie saw in the 1910s.
  • She wrote six romance novels as Mary Westmacott.
  • Agatha Christie disappeared for 10 days in 1926, triggering a police manhunt.
  • It took her only one weekend to write Absent in the Spring as Mary Westmacott.
  • The West End theatres dimmed their lights for an hour when she died.
  • Miss Marple was based after Christie’s maternal grandmother.
  • When Hercule Poirot died in the books, the character got a New York Times obituary.



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