The Christie Affair

In 1926, Agatha Christie disappeared for 11 days. Only I know the truth of her disappearance.
I’m no Hercule Poirot.
I’m her husband’s mistress.

Agatha Christie’s world is one of glamorous society parties, country house weekends, and growing literary fame.

Nan O’Dea’s world is something very different. Her attempts to escape a tough London upbringing during the Great War led to a life in Ireland marred by a hidden tragedy.

After fighting her way back to England, she’s set her sights on Agatha. Because Agatha Christie has something Nan wants. And it’s not just her husband.

Despite their differences, the two women will become the most unlikely of allies. And during the mysterious eleven days that Agatha goes missing, they will unravel a dark secret that only Nan holds the key to . . .

I was so excited to read this book! I preordered it last year and listed it as one of my most anticipated releases of 2022. I received it last month so popped it onto my March TBR as I was super keen to make time for it. Unfortunately I was left feeling pretty disappointed by this book. I feel like this was a very middle sort of book as there were parts that I enjoyed and parts that I really did not. This was very much a 2.5 star read but I rounded it up to 3 stars as it felt too harsh to give it 2.

I was so excited to read about the mysterious 11 day disappearance of Agatha Christie but this book barely covered it. I was expecting this book to be about the disappearance and that this would somehow involve Agatha and Nan. This book was perhaps 12% Agatha Christie disappearance and 88% Archibald Christie’s fictional mistress’s tragic past.

Nan’s story was so sad but predictable from the offset. It was also the sort of story that I would not have chosen to read. I actually felt almost tricked into reading a certain type of book when promised a mystery. There was an element of mystery introduced to the book but it was very clear what had happened.

I saw every twist coming so there was no real surprise whenever a ‘shocking reveal came’. I had worked out the entire plot and twists within the first 50 pages. Not that I tried to do this, it was just very obvious.

I didn’t enjoy the writing style. The book was told entirely from the point of view of Nan but there were moments where she wasn’t present, yet somehow knew what was happening. Nan wasn’t a fan of Agatha’s writing which felt a bit rude to put in a book that got a lot of publicity due to it featuring Agatha Christie. There were a couple times when Nan addressed the reader and broke the fourth wall which I found a bit odd as it didn’t really go with the rest of the book.

Due to the lack of Agatha Christie and her disappearance, I decided to read the book as if it weren’t about Agatha Christie. If that makes sense? It was easier to enjoy this book if o pretended that it wasn’t based on a real event and real people. I think that this book would have been more enjoyable had it not tried to tie itself to Agatha Christie, especially as the story was fictional so it could have just been a historical novel. By trying to link Nan’s story to Agatha, it just didn’t work for me.

This was my first book by this author, I don’t know if I would seek out a second. However if one of their books were to be a bookclub book or something, I would still read it. I just wouldn’t choose it. I’m so gutted about being disappointed by my first preorder of 2022 and hope that the remaining 10 preorders are less disappointing (I’m a sucker for a preorder! I look at them as gifts to me of the future from me of the past).

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