The 3 Best Agatha Christie Mystery Books Rated and Reviewed

If you know me, you’ve probably heard talk about Agatha Christie and her famous mystery novels.

As one of the best-selling fiction authors of all time, Agatha Christie earned her fame as the queen of mystery and crime novels, introducing many fans to characters like Hercule Poirot, Miss Marple, and Jane Marple—along with countless others across 33 books in total. As of today, her mysteries have sold over a billion copies worldwide and have been translated into 80 languages. If you’re looking to get into the mystery genre, here’s a look at my top three picks for the best Agatha Christie mysteries, what you can expect from each and why you’ll want to read them now!

Death on the Nile – 5/5 stars

Death on the Nile is not only one of my favorite mystery books, but it’s also one of my favorite books in general. The story is full of intrigue, romance, and a little bit of action.

It starts with a murder on a beautiful cruise ship along Egypt’s Nile River, one of its wealthiest passengers Linnet Doyle has been murdered. With no clues and no murder weapon, all passenger on the boat seem to emerge as suspect. An older woman with a shady past; her beautiful young companion; and an elegant heiress with something to hide. But which is truly guilty? Every time I read something from Agatha, I try to guess who might be the killer. Anyway, I couldn’t figure it out and couldn’t wait to see how it ends either. And you will be guessing right up until you reach that final page! The ending will stun you and make your jaw drop. This book really tugs at your heartstrings too, as there are plenty of funny moments amidst all the tragedy. I enjoyed every page of this book and gave it my highest recommendation with a 5/5 for its amazing plot and great main characters. 

This is also the best Agatha Christie book brought to screen in my opinion. 

The all-star cast includes Jane Birkin, Angela Lansbury, Bette Davis and Mia Farrow to mention a few. Peter Ustinov reprises his role as famous Belgian Detective Hercule Poirot in his own special way, with humor and style. “Every performance in this movie is excellent. Angela Lansbury’s quirky role was masterfully done by this great actress. And one star of this movie is Egypt and the Nile. A huge portion of this movie was filmed on location, with mesmerizing scenes of the Great Pyramids and other famous historical monuments. Very atmospheric, stunning, and captivating.”

The Mystery of the Blue Train – 4/5 stars

Another favorite Agatha Chrostoe book of mine, unfortunately often overshadowed by Murder on the Orient Express. There’s a lot going on in The Mystery of the Blue Train, but I don’t want to give too much away. Detective Hercule Poirot is introduced and he works his way through a series of interconnected mysteries, all cleverly presented. 

On this journey from London to the French Riviera aboard the luxurious and renowned Blue Train, the mystery surrounds the murder of a a U.S. millionaire’s daughter and the theft of her precious rubies. Suspects include the daughter’s estranged husband and a sophisticated con-man. Adding additional motivation for the murder is the disappearance of a priceless set of rubies that was given to the daughter immediately before the fateful train trip.  If you like intricate plots that take twists and turns, you should pick up The Mystery of Blue Train. It will keep you turning pages till late at night. 

Crime fans shouldn’t miss it!

4:50 From Paddington – 4.5/5 stars

How do you rank Agatha Christie novels? You can’t. She is the Queen of Mysteries and that’s about it. I do however have some favorite books of hers and “4:50 From Paddington” is one of them. The book was published in 1957 and follows the adventure of Agatha’s female detective Miss Jane Marpel, the greatest old lady in all of English murder fiction. The story surround elderly Mrs McGillicuddy, witnessing a murder taking place whilst on a moving train. She reports the incident but the police cannot find a body and do not investigate further. Miss Marple starts investigating and concludes that the body must have been thrown off the train onto the grounds of Rutherford Hall. The plot is clear and Christie keeps the number of characters small enough to stay clear in the mind of the reader. This is such a good read for a stormy night or to peruse during a vacation. I enjoyed this book a lot and thought it was interesting how different people were proposed as the culprit, each with a motive.

As with many of her books, 4:50 From Paddington was released as a short television movie in 1987.

I loved the little bits of irony and dryness in the dialogue, the scenery was absolutely breathtaking and gave us a glimpse into British life in the 1950’s. Joan Hickson did a wonderful job reprising her role as Miss Marple, and while the screenwriters took some liberties with the story, it’s always interesting to note the changes made in the characters and the plot line between book and TV show. Both are excellent. Read the book first, however.