Hot Take: Best Agatha Christie Characters

Agatha Christie was an English writer who wrote 66 detective novels and 14 short story collections. (Courtesy of The Guardian)Agatha Christie was an English writer who wrote 66 detective novels and 14 short story collections. (Courtesy of The Guardian)

Miranda Prescott, Arts & Entertainment Correspondent

Growing up, I did a lot of reading. And by a lot, I really mean a lot. I was reading roughly three books a day by the time I was in middle school. With Halloween right around the corner, I thought I would tell you about one of my favorite authors of all time. Her name is Dame Agatha Christie.

If you have not heard of her, she was a British mystery writer from the 1930s all the way up to her death in the 1970s. In her career, she managed to write countless novels surrounding the theme of murder, mystery, and the ace detectives that would solve them all.

From her books, I learned quickly who to like and not like when it came to her characters. I have listed here three of my favorites of her characters. They may have only appeared in one novel, or have an entire series surrounding their namesake. Either way, they all stand out in their own way and for many different reasons. Also, it goes without warning, but there will be spoilers to her books. So, if you want to read them first, I would not because there’s too many to read before you come back to this article.

1. Justice Lawrence Wargrave

Fun fact: his character arc helped me pass the AP Literature exam my senior year of high school. Another reason why Christie is my favorite writer. Wargrave is one of the characters in her novel, And Then There Were None. In the book, the characters assume that he is dead after he is shot in correspondence to the nursery rhyme that signals how they will all die. That part of the line is, “Five little Soldiers going in for law. One got in Chancery, and then there were four.” However, the reader finds out that at the end of the novel, after all of the “Soldiers” are gone, Wargrave has faked the death by gunshot, secretly kills two more guests and drives the other two to madness, and commits suicide at the end, leaving his confession in a message in a bottle.

Now, you are probably wondering, “why?” Well, that part I will leave for you to discover by reading the novel yourselves.

2. Vera Claythorne

Another character from And Then There Were None, Claythorne is the “lone survivor” at the end of Wargrave’s murder spree. She is driven to madness from not knowing if she can trust the people around her or not, and ultimately ends in her committing less-than-favorable actions that I will leave you to discover.

Her character embodies the lifestyle of the glamorous persons from the era. She favors her vanity and her reputation over anything else. Overall, she’s the character that you least expect to be the last one alive at the end of it all.

3. Hercule Poirot

The most famous character Agatha Christie has created by a longshot. Also one of her favorites to write on, besides her other characters that have long-running series. This Belgian detective, however, appears in 33 of Christie’s novels and dozens of her short stories. One of his earlier adventures, Murder on the Orient Express, was recently remade for the billionth time in 2017. In fact, several of the novels containing him as the main character were made into a film in the 1970s, as was the work mentioned with the other two characters on this list. 
If he is so famous, why did I not  make him first on my list, you ask? Well, you know what they say: save the best for last. And this detective is truly the best. Even Christie loved him so much that she kills him in his final novel, Curtain, a fitting title for the end of his legacy in books, film, and television.

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