Artuccino’s bookish observation
During the COVID19 lockdown, this story is a top-of-the-range comfort read. I really enjoyed it. I’ve given it three stars, but during this unusual historic moment we’re living through it deserves four stars. I’m having lots of trouble concentrating on reading fiction. My go-to tends to be audio books. I have so many books cracked open, but it was this one, Agatha Christie’s They Came To Baghdad that I read (listened to) all the way through. And then, I went back to listen to the first five chapters, re-visiting the establishment of the characters and the foundation of the story to follow. Victoria Jones the hero of the story, isn’t anything like Poirot nor like Miss Marple, she’s her own person. I enjoyed her ability to squirm out of difficult situations and remain up-beat. Plus, I enjoyed the backdrop of Iraq in 1950, and recognised many of the city names because of the wars that have been raging there during my life-time. And … I enjoyed the archeological dig, and the characters involved. So, if you are in need of a comfort read, I highly recommend this story to take you out of yourself, just for a little while.
A little about the book
They Came to Baghdad is an adventure novel by Agatha Christie, first published in the United Kingdom by the Collins Crime Club on 5 March 1951. The book was inspired by Christie’s own trips to Baghdad with her second husband, archaeologist Sir Max Mallowan, and is also one of few Christie novels belonging to the action and spy fiction genres, rather than to mysteries and whodunnits.
A secret summit of superpowers is to be held in Baghdad, but it is no longer secret. A shadowy group (which is both anti-Communist and anti-Capitalist) is plotting to sabotage the event. Things get complicated when enthusiastic young “adventurer” Victoria Jones discovers a dying secret British agent in her hotel room. His last words propel her into investigation.
A little about the author
Guinness World Records lists Agatha Christie as the best-selling fiction writer of all time, her novels having sold over two billion copies. According to Index Translationum, she remains the most-translated individual author. Find out more about Agatha Christie at Wikipedia. 3
A little about the audio narrator
The narrator of this story, Emelia Fox did a wonderful job with characterisation and voices that sat well with my listening. She is an English actress of film, stage, and television including starring as Dr Nikki Alexander in Silent Witness and comes from a family filled with actors. Find out more about Emelia Fox at Wikipedia. 4
Genre – Fiction