1 Agatha Christie, Woman of
- Was the borken chair an accident, or is it an important clue[kluː]?
- Her detectives, Hercule Poirot and
Miss Marple, are famous too – a short round Belgian[ˈbeldʒən] with a black moustache, and a dear
little old lady, who sees, hears, and remembers everything.
- Some of your writing is very good, so I am sending you a letter to
take to my agent, Hughes Massie…
- Archie stayed for the rest of the afternoon, and for
supper that evening.
- During the summer of 1915, Agatha was ill and could
not do any nursing work at the hospital for three or four weeks. Then,
when she returned, she went to work in the hospital dispensary[dɪˈspensəri].
- Dartmoor['da:tmuə] was a beautiful, lonely moor[mɔː(r); mʊə(r)]
in Devon. Agatha took Madge’s typewriter
with her and stayed at the Moorland[ˈmɔːlənd; ˈmʊələnd] Hotel at Hay Tor.
- It’s about my book – The Mysterious Affair[əˈfeə(r)] at
- Mother is finding it difficult to pay all the bills at Ashfield.
- “What shall we call it?”,“Styles, after you first book.”
- But one of the chambermaid[ˈtʃeɪmbəmeɪd]s went to see Mrs Taylor['teɪlə], the wife of the hotel manager.
- Archie stayed at Styles, but he wanted to marry Nancy[ˈnænsi] Neele, and he asked Agatha for a divorce[dɪˈvɔːs].
- Nejef is the holy[ˈhəʊli] city of the dead ,
and Kerbala has a wonderful mosque[mɒsk]. When
we leave here and go to Baghdad, he’ll take you there.
You can see Nippur on the way.
- But when they got to their hotel in Athens[ˈæθɪnz], there
were seven telegram[ˈtelɪɡræm]s waiting for Agatha.
- She planned her murder mysteries very carefully,
putting a clue here, a clue there. And they are clever clues, so it is
not easy to guess the name of the murderer. Who did it? We want to know,
and by the end of the book, everything falls tidily[ˈtaɪdɪli] into
place – and we have answer.
- I had six hours to wait before the coach[kəʊtʃ] came to take
me there, so I went into a little hotel.
- There was no mirror in my bedroom, but I had one with me, a present
from Mina. One morning I was standing in front of it and
I was shaving['ʃeɪvɪŋ].
- With his black cloak[kləʊk] around him, he looked like a
horrible black bird – and my blood ran cold.
- There were about fifty wooden boxes in the room. They were coffins,
and they were full of earth[ɜːθ]. In one of them lay the
Count! I could not say if he was dead or asleep. His eyes were open and
looked cold and stony[ˈstəʊni], but his face did not look like the
face of a dead man.
- At night, Lucy and I slept in one room, but sometimes she walked in
- The next day, Van Helsing and I went
back into the tomb again and opened the lid of the
- You must take this piece of wood in your left hand, and the hammer
in your right hand. Then you must drive the wood through Lucy’s
3 HENRY VIII AND HIS SIX
- Perhaps I was like her when I was twelve. I, too, was always asking
questions and wanting answers immediately.
- Both Anne and Katherine['kæθərin] were behead[bɪˈhed]ed in that terrible prison, the Tower of London.
- He divorced her. She lived a lonely life with only a few friends,
and died a broken and unhappy woman about ten years ago.
- So Henry[ˈhenri] broke with the Pope[pəʊp] and the
Catholic Church, and that’s how the Church of England began.
- There has only ever been one Queen in England, and that was a
terrible time, with a lot of fighting and killing.
- He wanted a son, but she only gave him a daughter, Princess
Elizabeth.She nearly had another baby, but she had a miscarriage[ˈmɪskærɪdʒ; ˌmɪsˈkærɪdʒ] after only a few months.
- “Did they have a son?”,“No,they didn’t. They weren’t married for
4 The Adventures of
- I had to stay with him in a hut[hʌt] in the woods and I
couldn’t go out by myself.
- All kinds of things came down the river and one night there was a
little wooden house, lying half on its side.
- Another night, when we were out looking for things on the river, we
found a raft[rɑːft]. It was made of good, strong wood, and was
about four metres by five metres.
- Suddenly, a big steamboat[ˈstiːmbəʊt] came at us very fast, and
the next minute it was right over us. Jim and I jumped off the raft into
- I knew Jim would say that.He was a good, true friend, and you can’t
say that about many people.
- They took Tom up to bed because his legs was really bad, and Aunt
Sally sat with him while he slept. I didn’t want to answer any questions
so I kept out of everybody’s way.
5 The Mystery of Allegra
- We were driving along a dark road when my mother saw a sign, which
said in big letters: Villa[ˈvɪlə] Henderson –
Bed and Breakfast.
- My father turned right and drove along an old road. When we arrived,
we saw a big villa[ˈvɪlə] with tall black trees around it.
- There were two big armchair[ˈɑːmtʃeə(r)]s in front of the fire and
a large black dog was sleeping in one of them.
- Now the room was very dark, so I walked with my hands out in front
of me, to try and find the light on the table by the bed.
- Her blond hair was as bright as sunlight round her pale face.
- It’s a convent[ˈkɒnvənt] school and the teachers are Italian nuns.
- Oh, don’t shake the water over us, Nero - you bad boy!
- When I was going out of the cemetery, I saw a tombstone[ˈtuːmstəʊn] with some English words on it.
6 Stories from the Five Towns
- They are not famous or important people. They work in shops and
factories; they fall in , and out of, love; they argue and they quarrel[ˈkwɒrəl].
- I was thinking about what to say to my mother when Mr Nixon went home. At the end of the meal I told my mother
that I must go to the post office.
- Perhaps, like all sons, I thought only about myself and my life. So
I decided to say nothing about my news, and that evening my mother came
first for me.
- But the portrait was by Cressage, the finest
portrait painter in England, and a portrait by Cressage cost a thousand
pounds or more.
- A wonderfully clever portrait of a successful businessman from a
small town; a little man who has made a lot of money and who thinks he
is very important.
- He was one of the town magistrate[ˈmædʒɪstreɪt]s. While he
travelled into town, he thought about his plan for the portrait.
- We are slow, silent people, we of the Five Towns. Perhaps it is
because we make pottery[ˈpɒtəri], which is slow,silent work.
- Toby Hall[hɔːl] was born in Turnhill, the smallest of the Five Towns. Last New Year’s
Eve[iːv] he was travelling by train from Crewe to Derby, which
was now his home town.
- This was his first visit to the Five Towns for twenty-three years,
but Knype station was still the same, and so were the
times of the trains to Turnhill. The train was the same, too.
- He changed his name from Hall, and started work as a potter[ˈpɒtə(r)] in Derby.
- “Good coal[kəʊl].”,“Seventy pence a tonne[tʌn].”
- John and Robert Hessian[ˈhesiən], brothers and bachelor[ˈbætʃələ(r)]s, sat together after supper in their house in Oldcastle Street, Bursley.
- The slate[sleɪt] was on a table near the fire. Maggie['mægɪ] gave it, and its pencil, to Robert.
- Maggie was the first to see that the brothers were not speaking.
Then it was their best friend, Mr Liversage, the solicitor[səˈlɪsɪtə(r)], and some of their other friends.
- Tweleve thousand pounds between two people was a lot of money for
each of them.
- They said very unkind, very unbrotherly things, and
they were both very angry.
- John toss[tɒs]ed the penny and put his hand over it.”Heads
- The service[ˈsɜːvɪs] was beginning when she walked in. She was
wearing white flowers on her hat!
- I’ve quarrelled with Robert. I can’t stay at home. Can I sleep in
your spare[speə(r)] room?
7 Ear-Rings from Frankfurt
- The evening surgery[ˈsɜːdʒəri] was always busy on Thursdays but
tonight was worse than usual.
- The last patient[ˈpeɪʃnt] didn’t leave until eight-thirty. And
then I had a visit from Richard.
- She saw some ear-rings and then remembered the gold ear-rings on the
girl at Maxim’s. They were large and looked very
expensive – and they looked all wrong next to that small unhappy
- “Er – just a minute,” he called after her, “I want a word with you.”
He sounded a little cross.
- I’m just round the corner from your flat. Can I come up? I’ll be
there in three minutes.
- She looked at her visitor, and began to put two and two together.
“And you must be Wendy”
- I didn’t sleep much that night. Or the next. I wanted to tell Richard['ritʃəd] but he was out of town on another of Kelly’s
- Then Richard went off to buy a newspaper, and after that we sat
around for about half an hour.
- Everything will be all right. I will speak to Chief[tʃiːf]
Superintendent[ˌsuːpərɪnˈtendənt; ˌsjuːpərɪnˈtendənt] Edwards in London, and there’ll be no
trouble for you.
- Early on Wednesday morning Richard called in to see me.
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