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Extended Audio Sample The Mysterious Affair at Styles: A Hercule Poirot Mystery Audiobook, by Agatha Christie Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (50,042 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Agatha Christie Narrator: Hugh Fraser Publisher: HarperCollins Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Related: The Hercule Poirot Mysteries Release Date: August 2012 ISBN: 9780062243874
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Captain Arthur Hastings, invalided in the Great War, is recuperating as a guest of John Cavendish at Styles Court, the “country-place” of John’s autocratic old aunt, Emily Inglethorpe, who recently remarried to a man twenty years her junior. When Emily’s sudden heart attack is found to be attributable to strychnine, Hastings recruits an old friend, now retired, to aid in the local investigation. With impeccable timing, Hercule Poirot, the famous Belgian detective, makes his dramatic entrance into the pages of crime literature.

The Mysterious Affair at Styles is the quintessential detective story and remains one of the most significant literary works in the mystery genre.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “Though this may be the first published book of Miss Agatha Christie, she betrays the touch of an old hand…You may safely make a wager with yourself that until you have heard M. Poirot’s final word on the mysterious affair at Styles, you will be kept guessing at its solution and will most certainly never lay down this most entertaining book.”

    New York Times Book Review

  • “The only fault this story has is that it is almost too ingenious…It is said to be the author’s first book, and the result of a bet about the possibility of writing a detective story in which the reader would not be able to spot the criminal. Every reader must admit that the bet was won.”

    Times Literary Supplement (London)

Listener Opinions

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Greta Kimel | 2/15/2014

    " One of the best surprise endings ever! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Mike Barresi | 2/13/2014

    " Although I feel great having read my first Christie novel, and the first Poirot one at that, I can't say I was highly impressed. Poirot and Hastings had too many similar notes to Holmes and Watson, but one can't blame Christie for that. I intend on reading more of Christie and hope to expand to some Miss Marple. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Benjamin | 2/12/2014

    " Poirot's first case is a quick and entertaining read and it kept my interest. The clues were not obvious enough for me to solve the mystery before hand, and there were plenty of red herrings, but it was still a fun read. I would read more of this series if only for the challenge of exercising my deductive powers. The characters are believable and I enjoyed the relationship between Hastings and Poirot. It was not one of troubled genius and everyman simpleton (ala Holmes and Watson), but rather more dispassionate experienced Poirot and passionate young Hastings. It's more egalitarian. Also, as a side note, its also interesting to catch and observe some of the vocabulary used by Christie from the 1920's that you would never hear anyone using today. My favorite was the liberal use of the verb "ejaculate". Our book club had a good laugh about where we would be able to inject that word into modern conversations. Sadly, we couldn't find a acceptable example. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Elissa | 2/10/2014

    " A delightful mystery. It had me stumped up until the last few pages. Poirot is a brilliant character, and Hastings makes a delightful, adorable side kick. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Carolyn | 2/9/2014

    " I thought I had the ending figured out but I was SO WRONG. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Sarah M. | 2/7/2014

    " GREAT BOOK! UNEXPECTED ENDING *thumbs up* :) :) :) "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Greg Pye | 2/6/2014

    " The first of Agatha Christie's famous sleuth detective series introducing the infamous Hercule Poirot. With his order and method, and using those little grey cells Poirot uses wit and deduction to find the true criminal from what seems to be a harmless bunch of strangers. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Benjamin | 2/3/2014

    " Poirot's first case is a quick and entertaining read and it kept my interest. The clues were not obvious enough for me to solve the mystery before hand, and there were plenty of red herrings, but it was still a fun read. I would read more of this series if only for the challenge of exercising my deductive powers. The characters are believable and I enjoyed the relationship between Hastings and Poirot. It was not one of troubled genius and everyman simpleton (ala Holmes and Watson), but rather more dispassionate experienced Poirot and passionate young Hastings. It's more egalitarian. Also, as a side note, its also interesting to catch and observe some of the vocabulary used by Christie from the 1920's that you would never hear anyone using today. My favorite was the liberal use of the verb "ejaculate". Our book club had a good laugh about where we would be able to inject that word into modern conversations. Sadly, we couldn't find a acceptable example. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Elaine Magalis | 2/2/2014

    " What can I say? I love Agatha Christie, with few exceptions and those are mostly when she tackles stories about world power and politics and her right wing political views come to the fore. This, fortunately, is not one of those books. It's stylish, tightly plotted and fun to read. Profound, it is not. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Wendy Hollister | 1/29/2014

    " Loved her style of writing and the detail of the characters, one could see them on stage or in a show. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Sara Ansted | 1/27/2014

    " I basically love everything by Agatha Christie. That's all. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Caleb Benadum | 1/24/2014

    " Gotta love Agatha Christie and her little Belgian detective! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 RuthG | 1/24/2014

    " I found this interesting but not compelling, perhaps because it's one of her earlier books. The characters seemed a little less realistic and not as clever as in her later writings. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Wendy | 1/19/2014

    " This is Agatha Christie's first book....that said it was pretty good. I have vowed to myself to read all her books in order starting this year. Hercule Poirot is one of my favorite characters ever!!!. I recommend you start with this book so that you are not confused when you read the others. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Brynne Thomas | 1/12/2014

    " It was my first Agatha Christie. I now understand what people are talking about when they say that all is revealed at the end with everyone gathered around. All in all I liked the book. It didn't blow me away, but I will read more in this series. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jiana | 1/11/2014

    " Got this one for free on my iBook. It was a good enjoyable short read. Happy to add to my bookshelf. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Lori | 1/8/2014

    " My very first Agatha Christie! It was pretty good, but I figured out the twist before it was revealed so that was kind of disappointing (well, and awesome because it made me feel smart). Also, even though I figured out the ending, I'm not sure it entirely "works" - it seemed a little contrived. Still, it was an entertaining read and Poirot is an amusing character. I'm not going to run out and read every Agatha Christie book right now, but I'm not averse to picking another one up in the near future. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Rita | 1/8/2014

    " I like everything Agatha Christie! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Dotgirl | 1/3/2014

    " The very first Hercule Poirot mystery - love it. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Nawfal | 12/28/2013

    " Not a great plot. But Poirot is awesome and the writing is so erudite. Love A.C. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kristina | 12/27/2013

    " I thoroughly enjoyed this book. As Christie's first Poirot book it is clear that she took the time to develope the characters of Poirot and Hastings. Unlike some of her other books, this didn't feel rushed and I never felt cheated by the ending. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Alida | 12/26/2013

    " The title was so familiar I was sure I had read it. It came with my Kobo ereader so on a whim I thought to re-read it and found that it was new to me. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Gunawan | 12/21/2013

    " The beginning of my favorite detective series. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Tracie | 12/20/2013

    " Hercule Poirot's first mystery and I absolutely loved it! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Craig | 12/19/2013

    " The first mystery of the Master Hercule Poirot. It was a treat. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Tamsyn | 12/18/2013

    " I like Poirot, there's something whimsical about him. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Shauna | 12/17/2013

    " The character development in this novel is more interesting to me than the actual case. It provides a foundation for me to help me understand the rest of the Hercule Poiroit series. A little English romanance is always interesting as well. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Pranabashish Deb | 12/11/2013

    " Loved the elaborate plot, sub plots and a innocent-till-the-last-page Hastings! Magnifique! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Somi | 12/8/2013

    " It was a really good read, I was convinced of who the villains were at the beginning, but A.C was really great at making me doubt myself. Good read! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Aubrey | 12/5/2013

    " Fun read, Christie's first novel. Didn't see the end comin' :) "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Ashley Brown | 11/24/2013

    " I loved Agatha Christie and I loved this book as well! When I finished it I found a list of her works in the back and it has inspired me to read every one of her mystery novels, in order :) "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Xin | 11/21/2013

    " What a great debut! And the creation of Poirot to boot! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Marts (Thinker) | 11/12/2013

    " Hastings was enjoying quite a lovely stay at Styles Court until Lady Emily mysteriously dies. She went up to her room and was assumed to be alone so no one has the slightest clue as to what could have happened. Fortunately Hercule Poirot steps in to assist... "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Lee (Rocky) | 9/12/2013

    " A nice little conventional mystery. The twist was guessable without being predictable, and was just enough different from what I expected to make it interesting. Definitely an enjoyable read. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 John | 9/11/2013

    " Having watched so many of the David Suchet Poirot series on PBS as a kid and even now on Netflix, it was a bit silly that I'd never read any of the books. So I picked the first novel to start with and I enjoyed it immensely. It was a blazing fast read and lots of fun at that. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Nawfal | 9/11/2013

    " Not a great plot. But Poirot is awesome and the writing is so erudite. Love A.C. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Terry | 8/31/2013

    " This is a classic mystery novel. It was a fun book that filled a long airplane ride. Agatha is a master at spinning the plot. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Susan | 8/1/2013

    " Classic Agatha Christie....an interesting plot, great period atmosphere, good characters, and a mystery to solve....what more could you ask for! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Pat | 7/29/2013

    " I first read this book over 40 years ago, and I'm pleased to find it still enjoyable. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Patricia Pryor | 7/27/2013

    " If you read mysteries,love an English setting and surprise endings then Agatha Christie is the queen of writers. I have collected all of her books and read them many times. You'll find many years of enjoyment in this intriguing author. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Lorraine | 7/9/2013

    " With my Nook, I've downloaded 25 mysteries by Christie. Pretty sure I've read most of them before, having been a fan since the summer I turned 13. But it will be such fun to revisit them! Fine writing is a joy forever! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Berna | 5/29/2013

    " I really enjoyed reading this book; the introduction to major Poirot characters was very successful. The mystery was interesting; I could not guess the persons responsible for a very long time; maybe just a bit before Poirot explained. The romances in the novel were finely developed as well. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Sue | 4/26/2013

    " My fav whodunnit of all time "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Stefan | 4/19/2013

    " Nothing wrong with the story, but I think the translation that I read is a bit dated, to say the least. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Abony Alexander | 3/31/2013

    " Much preferred the adventures of Tuppence and Tommy in her second novel, but this was a fun read nonetheless. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Emmaj | 3/26/2013

    " I read this so long ago I'm not sure I should even count it. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kathy | 2/12/2013

    " Actually listened to a fine audio version. After watching the PBS version with David Suchet, I am smitten with Hercule Poirot! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Cora Mae Follero | 2/9/2013

    " Sorry Hercule, but I guess Sherlock Holmes became my standard. And he's pretty hard to beat. Hahaha! :) "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Sara Ansted | 12/23/2012

    " I basically love everything by Agatha Christie. That's all. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Vicki | 12/22/2012

    " audio version narrated by David Suchet. He has a good voice for narration and, of course, is the voice of Hercule Poirot. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Rosie Mellinger | 12/1/2012

    " A fun, light, classic murder mystery "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Roshni | 11/24/2012

    " Intriguing mystery of Poirot's. The true murderer was cleverly concealed until the end, which left me surprised at his/her (don't want to give it away) identity. Enjoyable read. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Martha | 10/20/2012

    " Suspense, well written and a good story "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Rosie Mellinger | 10/12/2012

    " A fun, light, classic murder mystery "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Lady Knight | 10/8/2012

    " While definitely a good mystery, The Mysterious Affair at Styles has never been one that has captured my interest. I don't much care for Poirot nor Hastings in this one, and while I understand that this was one of Christie's first mysteries... I'm just not a fan. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Calliope | 9/13/2012

    " A good reminder of why Agatha Christie is a master. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Vicki | 8/23/2012

    " audio version narrated by David Suchet. He has a good voice for narration and, of course, is the voice of Hercule Poirot. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 David Jephcott | 8/1/2012

    " My first read of Agatha Christie. I will definitely read more of her work as this one was hard to put down. She does a good job making us readers go on a merry goose chase right until she unleashes the truth. Poirot is far better than Sherlock Holmes! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Alechia | 7/30/2012

    " This was the first Agatha Christie that I had read, and I found that i liked it quite a bit. It kept me guessing. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Barbara | 6/23/2012

    " Just what you expect from Christie, and all the more enjoyable for that. A well written English upper class locked-room murder mystery. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Keira_observer | 3/12/2012

    " u will never guess the murderer.. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Katie Rayl | 1/23/2012

    " What a delightful read! I enjoyed every page, and could not wait for the mystery to be solved. I do not go out of my way to figure out the ending of mystery novels because I like to be surprised, but even if I had tried, I don't think I would have figured this one out. What a clever writer she was! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Katherine Stephanis | 12/31/2011

    " Excellent little book. It's to its credit that, despite how utterly annoying I found the narrator, I still was barely able to put it down. I can definitely see why Agatha Christie became so incredibly popular. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Richard | 9/15/2011

    " My first Agatha Christie, her first book and the first Hercule Poirot. I thought this was very well written, but I found the plot a bit confusing with many similar characters. I gave it a 3.6 and will read more. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Travis | 7/29/2011

    " It was okay. I like Poirot. I've seen many episodes of the TV show. This is my first Agatha Christie novel that I've ever read. It was fun, but pretty light reading. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Dorsi | 6/28/2011

    " I am surprised how much I enjoyed this story. I believe this is the actual first Agatha Christie story with Hercule Poirot. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kathie | 6/28/2011

    " How fun to read Agatha's first book with Hercule! I love her use of the dimwitted Capt. Hastings to keep us guessing to the end - well okay - at least me guessing until the end LOL. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Donna | 6/24/2011

    " First Poirot. Even for a first, Poirot is already Poirot.


    Read entirely on Kindle. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Ronak | 6/23/2011

    " Great book with amazing twists and turns... with everything explained by Poirot at the end... "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Brandon | 6/15/2011

    " Checked this out because it was free on Kindle... actually my first Agatha Christie book. Convoluted plot but the book kept my attention. Typical whodunit... and it reminds you that the basic formula hasn't changed in nearly 100 years! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Sarah | 6/15/2011

    " I listened to the audio book read by B.J. Harrison and really enjoyed this. I didn't think I would, since I don't really like mysteries as a rule, but this one was well-written and somewhat fast-paced. I was *close* as to who the bad person was, but not quite. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Mindy | 6/14/2011

    " Really enjoed Hercule Poirot and Hastings. Hope to read all of them. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Mark | 6/12/2011

    " Agatha Christie introduces one of her most famous detectives with this fine example of the English mystery genre. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Thomas | 6/8/2011

    " I was surprised at how much I enjoyed this book. Normally I am not a huge fan of murder mysteries, but Agatha Christie has a way about her writing that is somehow irresistible. And I did not see the solution coming, though after the reveal it made total sense. In a word: Brilliant! "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Kim | 6/7/2011

    " I probably read this 100 years ago, but it was free on the i-book reader and I wanted to try it out. Really liked the digital experience, probably more than the actual book! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Lucy | 6/6/2011

    " A typical Agatha Christie Poirot mystery. Very British and very dated. The female character is a twit who can't seem to figure out who her true love is. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Sara | 6/6/2011

    " It was an enjoyable, quick read. It's only my second "Poirot" mystery at this point, and I'm not quite sure how I feel about him. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Leah | 6/4/2011

    " Great story- Poirot is first introduced. Stories like these make you realize why Agatha Christie is the number one read author!!! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Arthur | 6/2/2011

    " One of my favorite authors, Agatha Christie always provides a good mystery and a good read. Engaging characters, twisting plots, and a lot of humor. This was one of the first books of hers that I read and it made me a lifelong fan. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Sonia | 6/1/2011

    " I love Agatha Christie. I love all her books and her stories. This one is smart intelligent and sink your teeth into. It is amazing! "

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About the Author
Author Agatha Christie

Dame Agatha Christie (1890–1976) was a British crime writer best known for her detective novels and short stories. According to Guinness World Records, she is the best-selling novelist of all time, her novels having sold over four billion copies and having been translated into more than one hundred languages. The Agatha Award for best mystery and crime writers was named in her honor.

About the Narrator

Hugh Fraser is an English actor and theater director who is best known for his portrayal of Captain Hastings in the television series Agatha Christie’s Poirot. He studied acting at Webber Douglas Academy of Dramatic Art and is currently an associate tutor, director, and member of the audition panel at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art, specializing in Shakespeare.