Whodunnit? New author to bring Agatha Christie's Poirot out of retirement
Nick Clark is the arts correspondent of The Independent. He joined the newspaper in June 2007, initially reporting on the stock markets. He has covered beats including the City, and technology, media and telecoms and made the switch to arts in December 2011. He has also contributed articles to the sports section.
Wednesday 04 September 2013
Hercule Poirot is to test his famous grey cells once again in a “new” Agatha Christie novel – the first featuring the Belgian detective since Christie’s death in 1976.
Christie is the latest author to be resurrected by her estate, following novels in the style of Ian Fleming and PG Wodehouse written by contemporary authors. Bestselling crime writer Sophie Hannah is to write the as-yet untitled novel in Christie’s style, which will be published next year.
She said: “Writing a book with Poirot in it will be like writing about someone I know really well. I’ve read all the books so many times – I wouldn’t want to do this for any other writer. It was Hercule Poirot and Miss Marple who, between them, made me want to devote my working life to crime fiction.” The work, published by HarperCollins, will be the first fully-authorised Poirot novel since the author’s death. Mathew Prichard, Christie’s grandson and chairman of Agatha Christie Limited, the company that manages her estate, said: “The argument that might convince her is that it’s an attempt to reintroduce an already enthusiastic public to the books she wrote. That would have made her sympathetic to what we’re trying to do. When we heard that someone of Sophie’s eminence wanted to be involved in a project like this, we felt the opportunity was too good to miss.”
Christie is the author of 80 crime novels and short story collections. More than a billion copies of her books have been sold in English and another billion in foreign languages, and her publisher claimed she is outsold only by the Bible and Shakespeare. Literary agent Jonny Geller, joint chief executive of Curtis Brown, said estates were keen to produce new work from their authors “to drive readers to the original work. One way of doing that is reinventing it”.
Mr Geller, who has worked with the Fleming estate on new James Bond books, said: “There is real potential that hasn’t been exploited. You can have young Poirot or modern Poirot.”
There were few clues as to the plot at this stage, although Ms Hannah said she had written a detailed plan of almost 100 pages, “ with every scene, detail and eyebrow twitch”.
The novel will be set in the late 1920s, four years after the year Poirot made his debut in The Mysterious Affair at Styles. The book will be set between The Mystery of the Blue Train and Peril at End House. It will not feature Poirot’s sidekick Captain Hastings, or his ally Inspector Japp.
Never say never again: Bond is back
Ian Fleming wrote the James Bond books over 50 years ago and now Solo, written by William Boyd, is out this month. Boyd was commissioned by the Ian Fleming estate to write a new Bond book last year. Best-selling authors Jeffery Deaver and Sebastian Faulks have also written new Bond works.
film Sex scene trailer sees a shirtless Jamie Dornan turn up the heat
Maisie Williams single-handedly rises to the challengeTV
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Venezuela Expo Tattoo 2015: Extreme body art from 'Vampire Woman' to 109mm earlobes
- 2 Saudi preacher who 'raped and tortured' his five -year-old daughter to death is released after paying 'blood money'
- 3 Ball pool for adults opens in London
- 4 Amal Clooney gives excellent response to fashion question at European Court of Human Rights
- 5 Canadian woman suing police who locked her in van with sex offender who then raped her
Venezuela Expo Tattoo 2015: Extreme body art from 'Vampire Woman' to 109mm earlobes
Game of Thrones really doesn't want Danny Dyer - EastEnders star rejected three times
Game of Thrones season 5 trailer: The first full-length look is here
Sia apologises for 'Elastic Heart' music video that sees Shia LaBeouf wrestle 12-year-old Maddie Ziegler
The secret joke hidden in Silence of the Lambs' most famous line
9 reasons Greece's experiment with the radical left is doomed to failure
Have we reached 'peak food'? Shortages loom as global production rates slow
Greece elections: Syriza and EU on collision course after election win for left-wing party
Stephen Fry explains what he would say if he was 'confronted by God'
British grandmother Lindsay Sandiford faces execution by firing squad in Indonesia
Liberal Democrat minister defends comments suggesting immigration causes pub closures