This year’s celebrations of the centenary of Hercule Poirot’s debut and, arguably, the dawn of the Golden Age of Detection have obviously been overshadowed by wider events, but there’s still much to celebrate — not least of which is a new book about Poirot from Mark Aldridge.
Agatha Christie’s Poirot: The Greatest Detective in the World (2020) covers the full career of Christie’s little Belgian from his debut in The Mysterious Affair at Styles (1920) all the way through to the forthcoming Kenneth Branagh-starring adaptation Death on the Nile (2020). And, in that century, there’s a lot of career to cover: not just Christie’s novels and short stories, but also the plays, televisations, comics, video games, and radio dramas that have sprung up as the character’s stature has grown.
So, here’s your chance to listen to Mark’s story of how the book came about, how and why he decided to structure it as he has — chronologically, rather than by medium — the decision to avoid spoilers in his summations of each undertaking, the importance of checking up on the received wisdom of the stories we’ve all heard trotted out about Christie over the years, how Hercule Poirot is essentially Batman, and much more besides.
Thanks go to Mark for his time, and indeed the years that went into collating and writing the material for the book, to HarperCollins for my first ever review copy of a book, to Jonny Berliner for my theme music, and to you at home, as ever, for your continued interest in this endeavour.
On a Christie theme, don’t forget that there’s still time to vote for which title — The Murder of Roger Ackroyd (1926), Cards on the Table (1936), or Sparkling Cyanide (1944) — you’d like Brad, Moira, and I to discuss in January, but the window is closing. The poll will be open until the end of the month, and the winner announced so as to give anyone who wishes to read along the time to so do.
Hope you’re all keeping safe and well; more podcast in a fortnight.
Previous episodes of In GAD We Trust can be found here.