Books: Christie on the Jaghjagha

COME, TELL ME HOW YOU LIVE (225 pp.) — Agatha Christie Mallowan —Dodd, Mead ($3).

The local knowledge of the Near East shown in several of Agatha Christie's thrillers (Murder in Mesopotamia, Death on the Nile) was acquired at firsthand, as her first travel book now proves. It is a breezy, completely unsinister tale of a couple of winters she spent before the war in Syria, where her husband, Archaeologist Max Mallowan of the British Museum, went to dig.

Jouncing in & out of wadis (valleys) in a locally built truck, the Mallowans scouted for Chaldean 600 B.C. tells (mounds) near the...

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