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Jefferson County Reads: 2023

The 2023 Jefferson County Reads selection is the number one selling mystery novel of all time, Agatha Christie's And Then There Were None.


Jefferson County Reads 2023

Jefferson County Reads brings residents together to read and discuss a book. Sponsored by Jefferson County Library, Jefferson College Library, Festus Public Library, De Soto Public Library and the City of Crystal City, this initiative offers books and programs at all participating libraries. See details below for information about the book discussion at Jefferson College Library and other participating libraries.

April 21 Book Discussion Questions

1. Talk about the characters—are any of them likable? Do you develop sympathy for anyone in particular: put another way, are some more sympathetic than others? Why might Christie have put together such an unpleasant cast of characters?

2. Was there any one individual you originally suspected? And if so, at what point?

3. What is the point of the poem "Ten Little Soldiers" and the fact that after each death one of the figurines on the dining room table goes missing? How do both poem and figurines function in the story? Why might Christie have used such a symbol?

4. One of the themes present throughout And Then There Were None is guilt and the effect it can have on a person. How did each character deal with the guilt of their past crimes? Who handled it the best? And who was the most torn up from it?

5. Talk about class and gender distinctions. Do you find it strange that Rogers continues to serve the guests despite the death of his wife? Or that women are in charge of meals and clean-up? What about the anti-semitic references?

6. If you were trapped on Soldier Island, which character’s behavior would you most identify with and why? If not, what would you have done differently?

7. Talk about the motive behind the murders of all the guests. Each of the guests is guilty of a crime, but not one that could be prosecuted in a court of law. Has true justice been accomplished by the end of the novel? Is the murderer insane as all the guests claim? Or is he/she acting with clear-headed logic and rationality?

8. Is the ending satisfying? Were you surprised by the identity of the murderer? Would you have preferred the final victim to discover who the killer was before dying? Why might Christie have withheld that information from readers, as well, until the epilogue?

9. It’s widely commented that Christie “violated the standard rules of mystery writing” by making it nearly impossible for us to solve the mystery before she explains it to us. How did that make you feel as a reader?

10. Have you read any other Agatha Christie novels? Which ones...and how does this compare?

Jefferson County Reads @ Jefferson College--Book Discussion

And Then There Were None by Agatha Christie

1939. Europe teeters on the brink of war. Ten strangers are invited to Soldier Island, an isolated rock near the Devon coast. Cut off from the mainland, with their generous hosts Mr and Mrs U.N. Owen mysteriously absent, they are each accused of a terrible crime. When one of the party dies suddenly they realize they may be harboring a murderer among their number. The 10 strangers include a reckless playboy, a troubled Harley Street doctor, a formidable judge, an uncouth detective, an unscrupulous mercenary, a God-fearing spinster, two restless servants, a highly decorated general and an anxious secretary. One by one they are picked off. Who will survive? And who is the killer? Click here to reserve a copy for checkout at Jefferson College Library.

Book Discussions


Wednesday, March 29

6:30-7:30 PM

Jefferson County Library-Windsor

7479 Metropolitan Blvd.

Barnhart, Missouri



Friday, April 21


Jefferson College Library

1000 Viking Dr.

Hillsboro, Missouri



Tuesday, April 25


Jefferson County Library - Arnold

1701 Missouri State Rd.

Arnold, Missouri



Tuesday, May 16

5:30-6:30 PM

Jefferson County Library-Northwest

5680 Missouri PP

HIgh Ridge, Missouri



Tuesday, June 13

6:00-7:00 PM

Festus Public LIbrary

400 W Main St

Festus, Missouri