Book Review: The Mysterious Affair at Styles by Agatha Christie

“Instinct is a marvelous thing. It can neither be explained nor ignored.”

Agatha Christie, The Mysterious Affair at Styles

Title: The Mysterious Affair at Styles
Series: Hercule Poirot (Book 1)
Author: Agatha Christie
Genres: Mystery, Historical Fiction, Classics
Length: 6 hrs, 43 mins (Audiobook)
Published: October 1st, 1920

My Rating: ★★★½
Read: 9/29/2023- 10/2/2023


I’m pretty sure this was my first Agatha Christie book (how bad is it that I don’t remember…) and my expectations were high after a lifetime of hearing about her and her mysteries. It’s easy to see how she became an original master of the genre, but as someone who’s read so many other mysteries and prefers more thrill to the plot, I ended up feeling underwhelmed. 

The Mysterious Affair at Styles is the book that started it all — Agatha Christie’s debut as well as the first introduction to Hercule Poirot. When a wealthy and elderly woman is poisoned, there are a number of suspects in the household. It’s up to Hercule Poirot to deduce who the killer is. 

The book was good. I love the fine details of everything and it was a great setting. I just struggled to get excited or really into the plot. The problem when you read a lot of mysteries is that the formulas become ingrained. I was more in the mood for a short audiobook at the time rather than a mystery itself, so I’m sure that was part of the problem. I will definitely be returning to Agatha Christie though, particularly Murder on the Orient Express

Likes & Dislikes:

What I liked:

  • The detail and setup.
  • The setting.

What I didn’t like:

  • I don’t understand why the narrator is the one narrating it.


I think if I’m in the mood for a mystery I’ll enjoy Agatha Christie’s book much more.

Where to buy the book:

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