Monday, September 21, 2009

Magnificent, Marvellous, Mighty Monday and Ariadne Oliver

Completing my tribute to Agatha Christie, it would be remiss of me not to mention another of my favourite characters: Ariadne Oliver.

Based on Agatha herself (as Agatha admitted in interviews), Ariadne is a fascinating insight into Agatha's own thoughts on the crime-writing genre and her fictional characters.

Eccentric, flamboyant, feisty and opinionated, Ariadne is worlds away from Miss Marple but is good friends with Poirot and assists him (in her bumbling fashion) to solve crimes with her (frequently misplaced) 'feminine intuition'. You get the feeling Agatha had a lot of fun writing this larger-than-life character who closely echoed Agatha's own thoughts and feelings on the craft of mystery writing.

My imagination conjured a large and rather dowdy woman when I was reading the books and so I loved the more glamorous interpretation the recent Poirot episodes brought to the character with Zoe Wanamaker wearing thirties-style dresses and exotic hairpieces.

Ariadne is a lovable, very human character who reveals Agatha Christie herself to us with twinkling eyes. When Ariadne berates the fans who write to her about trivial mistakes, or shrieks how much she hates her creation the Finnish detective Sven Hjerson, we can enjoy the joke.

And so three cheers for middle-aged mystery novelists struggling with weight gain and apple addictions, having to deal with the demands of publishers and over-zealous fans whilst they attempt to wrestle with plots and murder most foul.

Three cheers for Araidne Oliver and three more for the Queen of Crime herself - Agatha Christie!

“I like living. I have sometimes been wildly, despairingly, acutely
miserable, racked with sorrow, but through it all I still know quite
certainly that just to be alive is a grand thing.”

Agatha Christie

image source Hallmark channel:


  1. What a great quote. We think we can all relate to it. Happy Monday to you.

  2. Indeed- a wonderful quote! How wonderful life can be! :) And also how terrible - but the wonderful bits make life worth it - they outweight the dark moments! Hope you had a lovely weekend? xxx

  3. PS You may enjoy this article from last week:

  4. Hello Josephine

    I hope that you have had a good weekend
    Another great Agatha Christie post!
    It is such a great quote which so many of us I am sure can relate to.
    I too like the flamboyant character. I did not know that she was based on Agatha Christie herself and found that very interesting. I have not finished the book that I reading on Agatha Chritie, so many new things that I keep learning about. She was a fascinating person.
    Take care
    Isabelle x

  5. How I love Ariadne! I love her apples- I love her Finnish vegetarian character Sven :) Cheers to that! And I do love the actress that has recently been playing her in the films... xo

  6. Hi Josephine, how are you?? Sorry I have been so out of touch. Greece was wonderful. I must check out this Agatha Christie. I love her quote at the end. Carla x

  7. Such a great quote - thank you

  8. Thank you for visiting my blog again! Yes, that house would certainly inspire some wonderful stories!!!!!!

  9. It sure is...being alive that is. Nice quote, great post darling, I enjoyed reading it and thank you so much for the sweet comment you left me, much appreciated.

    Love & Hugs

  10. Thanks for coming to my blog with birthday wishes yesterday!

    This post makes me want to read an Agatha Christie...which I haven't done in years! I think a trip to the library might be in order today! :)

  11. Lovely pics Josephine...I just cannot imagine a 'red' Sydney. Good luck with all that dust...I hope you are enjoying the weekend, xv.


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