Why Agatha Christie hid two manuscripts in a safe.

2015 is the 125th birth anniversary of "The Queen of Crime", Agatha Christie. The 2015 Pune International Literary Festival celebrated the best-selling author with a special exhibition and a quiz that Choose To Thinq hosted on the occasion. Harish and Ramanand at P.I.L.F. 2015

The quiz was jointly presented by British Council, Pune and Choose To Thinq - this was based on a SparQue session conducted earlier in the year.

Some of the participants at the Agatha Christie Quiz

About 50 enthusiastic Agatha Christie fans took part, with ages ranging from 10 to 70+. The quiz was hosted Ramanand; incidentally, his Mastermind India-winning performance included a specialist quizzing round on "The Tommy & Tuppence books of Agatha Christie".

Participants also discussed their favourite Christie books, their most loved characters, how they got into reading Agatha Christie books, and recommended books to each other.

Some of the crowd's recommendations for the one Agatha Christie book that you should read if you are new to her books:

  • And Then There Were None
  • Murder in Mesopotamia
  • Murder on the Orient Express

Some questions from the quiz:

Q. The first and last mysteries that AC published were, respectively, Poirot and Marple novels. Name them. A. "The Mysterious Affair at Styles" and "Sleeping Murder".

Q. This form of poisoning was used in The Pale Horse. Agatha Christie was sometimes blamed for bringing it to the notice of would-be poisoners! This poison was in which chemical element's sulphate form? A. Thallium

Q. "Curtain" and "Sleeping Murder" (the last cases of Poirot and Marple respectively) were published after AC's death in the mid-1970s. However, these had been written 35-odd years ago. AC had put these stories in a safe and asked them to be published only after her death. Why did she do all this?

A. She wrote them during the beginning of World War II in Britain as she wasn’t sure if she would survive the war and its outcome. She wanted to ensure a proper ending to both Poirot and Marple, so she wrote their final books long before. She did survive the war!