Spider's Web

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A classic from the queen of mystery: Agatha Christie.

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Spider's Web

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A classic from the queen of mystery: Agatha Christie.

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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble
Clarissa Hailsham-Brown loves to pretend. She's pretended that her husband was secretly married to another woman. She's pretended to be a great actress whose world is a stage. She's even pretended that she's had to choose between betraying her country and seeing her husband shot before her eyes. But when Clarissa stumbles upon a dead body in the drawing room, there's no pretending about the mess she'll be in if she can't hide the body before her husband comes home, and convince the police that there's been no murder….
Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Osborne completes his homage to Christie with this third and final adaptation of an original Christie play, following Black Coffee (1998) and The Unexpected Guest (1999). Though the play was written in 1954, the story suffers little from the passage of time, and aside from the static setting, reads well as a novel. Christie's exquisite timing and clever sleight-of-mind tricks are a delight, while Osborne has the good sense not to embroider the tale. A typical closed cast of characters occupies the temporary country home of Henry and Clarissa Hailsham-Brown: the seemingly scatterbrained Clarissa; her stepdaughter, Pippa; the odious Oliver Costello, who has married Pippa's mother; Sir Rowland Delahaye, Clarissa's godfather and a man of honor; an outspoken gardener; a butler; a cook; and Inspector Lord, the rather diffident policeman. When Clarissa discovers a body in the drawing room, she decides that it mustn't be found there. Her plans to dispose of the body are interrupted by the arrival of a rather diffident policeman, Inspector Lord, who has come to check out an anonymous tip that a murder has been committed. Christie's bag of tricks includes hidden doorways, secret drawers, French windows and concealed identities--all used to amusing effect. As with Osborne's previous novelizations, this is a welcome addition to the Christie canon and is sure to reach mystery bestseller lists. The cover, with a spider in a web against a green faux-marble background, is as catchy as they come. (Nov.) Copyright 2000 Cahners Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
Osborne's third novelization of a Christie play—this one based on a 1954 original that ran for two years alongside the West End perennials Witness for the Prosecution and The Mousetrap—takes place in still another country house that, except for the impending hush-hush visit of the Prime Minister and the Soviet premier, could be frozen back in the '20s. As Copplestone Court's latest tenant, rising Foreign Office star Henry Hailsham-Brown, orders his wife Clarissa to get the place ready for his big event, she's already in deeper waters. Minutes earlier, she'd faced off with Oliver Costello, current husband and rumored drug supplier to Henry's ex. Unsavory Oliver threatened to launch a custody battle for Henry's beloved daughter Pippa. And on returning secretly to Copplestone soon after, Costello is promptly murdered, and Clarissa, frantically attempting to preserve the peace Henry needs for his all-important meeting, enlists the aid of three houseguests to hide the body from Inspector Lord, who despite his blandness has much too sharp an eye to be fooled by such rank amateurs. Both the dramaturgy and most of the characters, as usual, are stock—you can almost hear the swish of the curtain falling on the first two acts—but Clarissa, a charming liar, supplies some much-needed humor and pep to the tired proceedings. Better than Christie/Osborne's Black Coffee (1998), not as good as The Unexpected Guest (1999). If this adaptation repeats the sales of those two, expect an Osborne version of Verdict, Christie's last original mystery play, in time for next Christmas.Eccles, Marjorie THE SUPERINTENDENT'S DAUGHTER Dunne/St. Martin's Minotaur (240 pp.) Dec. 2000
From the Publisher
"Christie's exquisite timing and clever sleight-of-hand tricks are a delight...this is a welcome addition to the Christie cannon."—Publishers Weekly

"Great fun. The perfect way to distract you from the cares of the day."—Arizona Daily Star

"Agatha Christie is the champion deceiver of our time."—The New York Times

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780062232205
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 7/3/2012
  • Format: MP3
  • Edition description: Unabridged
  • Ships to U.S.and APO/FPO addresses only.

Meet the Author

Agatha Christie

Agatha Christie is the most widely published author of all time and in any language, outsold only by the Bible and Shakespeare. Her books have sold over a billion copies in English and another billion in one hundred foreign countries. She is the author of eighty novels and short-story collections, nineteen plays, and six novels under the name Mary Westmacott. She died in 1976.


Agatha Christie is the world's best-known mystery writer. Her books have sold over a billion copies in the English language, and another billion in 44 foreign languages. She is the most widely published author of all time in any language, outsold only by the Bible and Shakespeare. Her writing career spanned more than half a century, during which she wrote 79 novels and a short story collection, as well as 14 plays, one of which, The Mousetrap, is the longest running play in history. Two of the characters she created, the brilliant Belgian detective Hercule Poirot and the irrepressible and relentless Miss Marple, went on to become world famous detectives. Both have been widely dramatized in feature films and made-for-TV movies. Agatha Christie died in 1976.

Author biography courtesy of Random House, Inc.

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    1. Also Known As:
      Mary Westmacott (used for her romantic fiction)
    1. Date of Birth:
      September 15, 1890
    2. Place of Birth:
      Torquay, Devon, England
    1. Date of Death:
      January 12, 1976

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 11 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 11 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 6, 2012

    Leader den

    Leader den

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 13, 2011


    No text was provided for this review.

  • Posted February 15, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    A Typical Agatha Christie Novel

    This is Agatha Christie at her best. This book is a classic whodunnit and it has a little twist in the end.

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  • Posted March 3, 2009

    Agatha Christie

    The book was in the usual Christie genre and worth reading.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 16, 2006


    This book was outstanding. I felt that I could relate to Clarissa in many ways and I could even get mad at her lying!!This book will definetly keep you up at night. It made me check to see if my doors were locked at night!. : )

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 18, 2001

    Agatha impreses readers again

    This is the 2nd Agatha Christie book i have read and i think i have found my favirote author. this book was outsanding. very few writers can achive writting a really good book, specialy a murder mystery. you can bet every book log book that i can pick myself will be one of Agatha Christie outsanding murder mystery.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 7, 2013

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted June 15, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted January 16, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted June 4, 2012

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted May 30, 2013

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