'And Then There Were None' Facts: A Must-Read Agatha Christie Mystery

Ritwik Bhuyan
Jan 23, 2024 By Ritwik Bhuyan
Originally Published on Mar 11, 2022
Edited by Daisha Capers
Fact-checked by Niyati Parab
'And Then There Were None' Facts: A Must-Read Agatha Christie Mystery
Age: 3-18
Read time: 7.1 Min

Agatha Christie is known for her mystery novels and this book 'And Then There Were None' is no different.

This mystery novel from the English author was the most difficult one to write out of all her books, in her own words. Collins Crime Club first published this book in the United Kingdom on November 6, 1939.

Initially, the book's name was 'Ten Little Indians,' and it was taken from the counting rhyme and minstrel song for children, this song is very important to the plot of the story. However, when the U.S. edition of the book was launched in January 1940, a new name 'And Then There Were None' was given. These five words are the last five words of the song mentioned above. There have been many adaptations of the book released under different names like 'Ten Little Soldiers,' and the official name of 'And Then There Were None.'

As expected, the book is one of the best-selling mysteries in the world. Over 100 million copies of the novel have been sold to date which makes the book one of the largest selling books of all time. 'And Then There Were None' is the sixth best-selling novel according to Publications International.

The idea intrigued Agatha even though it was pretty tough to write the book. There were massive rewrites involved with the story until she was ready to write the original one. She considered adding 12 characters to the island but later stopped at 10 characters for the book. The story is set in 1939 when Europe is on brink of war. 10 strangers are chosen to come to Soldier Island which is a rock isolated in the Devon Coast. Each of the strangers is accused of a terrible crime and then they find out they have a murderer in their midst after one of the strangers suddenly dies. Tension grows as they realised the murder is going to happen again and again with the murderer being one among them.

Characters Of 'And Then There Were None'

The story is unique with the plot structured around 10 lines from the counting nursery rhyme for children, 'Ten Little Indians.' All 10 victims are killed, which includes the two caretakers of the island. All of them are killed in a manner that is reflected in one of the lines of the rhyme. Let's know the characters of the book.

Anthony James Marston is an irresponsible and amoral young man. Ethel Rogers is the cook and housekeeper on the island, while Thomas Rogers is her domineering husband and the butler. General John Gordon MacArthur is a retired First World War hero. Edward George Armstrong is a Harley Street doctor. Emily Brent is an elderly spinster. William Henry Blore is a private investigator and a former police inspector. Philip Lombard is a soldier of fortune. Lawrence John Wargrave is a retired criminal judge. Vera Elizabeth Claythorne is a young sports mistress at a girls' school but is currently on leave from her work. Isaac Morris is an unethical lawyer and the owner of the island.

Watch the murder take turns in the story with this excellent line of characters.


In 1955, Agatha Christie was the first recipient of the prestigious Grand Master Award bestowed by the Mystery Writers of America.

'And Then There Were None' is hailed by all critics worldwide for the crisp storytelling and the twists and turns involved in the murders. This book is one of the best-selling crime novels of all time and this book is the reason why Agatha Christie is one of the best-selling novelists, as details revealed by Agatha Christie Estate. More than 100 million copies have been sold worldwide. Publications International even puts the book on the list as the sixth best-selling title.

Agatha Christie created a mystery book that has sold over 100 million copies worldwide.

The Plot Of 'And Then There Were None'

The murder mystery follows eight strangers to an island; Vera, Philip, William, Dr. Armstrong, Emily Brent, General MacArthur, Judge Wargrave, and Tony Marston.

Mr. and Mrs. Rogers greet the guests upon their arrival as Mr. Owen, the host will arrive only the next day. After an excellent dinner, all the guests gather in the drawing-room when they hear a recorded voice accusing each of a death they have caused in the past and keeping it hidden. Everyone discusses among themselves and finds out that no one including the butler and the housekeeper knows who Mr. Owens is. It was someone's nefarious plan to bring them here.

The first one to die is Tony who chokes on poisoned whiskey. Everyone gets afraid and goes to bed, guilting over the deaths they have committed in the past. 'Ten Little Indians,' the rhyme hangs in each of the rooms and Vera notices that Tony's death is from the first verse of the nursery rhyme. When everyone wakes up in the morning, Mrs. Rogers has died. Scared, the guests tries to flee the island, but the boat did not arrive that day. Armstrong, Blore, and Lombard try to find Mr. Owen on the island but are unsuccessful. General MacArthur goes near the ocean to look out and before lunch, Dr. Armstrong finds him dead with a blow on the head. The guests discuss and think that one of them is the murderer. Accusations are made but the judge reveals that it can be anyone among them. The next morning, Mr. Rogers is found killed while he was chopping wood for breakfast. The guests realize that each death is according to the rhyme by now. Breakfast is over and Emily stays alone at the table. She is found dead next with the cause of her death being poison injection in her neck. Everyone searches each other's bags and anything that can be a weapon is hidden away. Vera goes to take a bath and finds a seaweed hanging from the ceiling. Hearing her cries, everyone but Wargrave goes to check it out. When they return, Wargrave is found draped in a curtain, similar to courtroom robes and a red mark on the forehead. He had been shot. Armstrong vanishes at night from the house and the island. The other three go out in the open to be safe. Blore decides to go in for food but someone pushed a statue out of the window killing Blore. Armstrong's body is found on the beach drowned. Vera thinks Philip is the killer and steals his gun to shoot him. She returns to her room and finds a noose hanging. She gets a strong urge to enact the last line of the nursery rhyme and hangs herself.

Police find a manuscript in a bottle from the dead judge. He planned everything to punish everyone whose crimes are not punishable by law. Wargrave was already dying, so he decided to take this step.

Reviews Of 'And Then There Were None'

This is a who-done-it novel that has gripped people all over the world. Be the judge in the twist and turns of the murder mystery by Agatha Christie.

The book is easy to read, exciting to follow and has enough mysteries to keep the reader entertained from beginning to end. It is well thought out which is all because of Agatha Christie who used her valuable time to create a masterpiece.

A lot of critics and newspapers have deemed the book refreshing. The book has inspired movie adaptations since 1945 and stage adaptations since 1943. Television and radio have also adapted the book to entertain everyone in the house, old or young. So why wait? Get the book and take the bandwagon through all the mysteries of the island.


Is 'And Then There Were None' based on a true story?

No, it is a fictional story.

Did anyone survive in 'And Then There Were None?'

No one survived among the 10 visitors.

What is the meaning of 'And Then There Were None?'

The book was written with the meaning of punishing the unpunished.

Is 'And Then There Were None' a good book?

It is a brilliant mystery.

Who was the killer 'And Then There Were None?'

Judge Wargrave turned out to be the main orchestrator.

Why was Justice Wargrave invited to the island?

He was obsessed with enforcing justice and could go to any length to enact that. So, he invited himself.

How are Hugo and Cyril related?

Vera worked as a governess to a spoiled young brat named Cyril Hamilton. Vera let Cyril drown so that Hugo, his relative could inherit the money and marry her. Cyril is Hugo's nephew.

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Written by Ritwik Bhuyan

Bachelor of Arts specializing in English

Ritwik Bhuyan picture

Ritwik BhuyanBachelor of Arts specializing in English

A skilled content writer, Ritwik holds a Bachelor's degree in English from Delhi University. He has refined his writing abilities through his past experience at PenVelope and his current role at Kidadl. In addition to his proficiency in writing, Ritwik has pursued his passion for flying by achieving CPL training and becoming a licensed commercial pilot. This diverse skill set highlights his commitment to exploring multiple fields. Ritwik's experience in the aviation industry has provided him with a unique perspective and attention to detail, which he brings to his writing.

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