Murder on the Christmas Express by Alexandra Benedict
Eighteen passengers. Seven stops. One killer.
In the early hours of Christmas Eve, the sleeper train to the Highlands is derailed, along with the festive plans of its travellers. With the train stuck in snow in the middle of nowhere, a killer stalks its carriages, picking off passengers one by one. Those who sleep on the sleeper train may never wake again.
Can former Met detective Roz Parker find the killer before they kill again?
I do love a Christmas crime novel and last year I really enjoyed reading The Christmas Murder Game by Alexandra Benedict and Alexandra returns with another Christmas murder mystery. Murder on the Christmas Express (Simon & Schuster) is very much in the mind of an Agatha Christie murder mystery.
Every murder mystery needs its great characters to keep you guessing and Alexandra Benedict has written in some, well lets just say interesting characters that will keep you guessing. It is Christmas and everyone is trying to be somewhere but the weather is setting in and there is travel chaos. As the title suggests the main scene is aboard the sleeper and it is heading north to the Highlands but the snow is getting worse and so the train is not going to be stopping at all the stops. On board the train is the former Met detective Roz Parker, but one by one you get to meet the leading characters and what a real mix they are. There is a social media celebrity who is constantly engaging with her followers, then we have a quiz team, there is even a stowaway on board the train, there is a TV star and many others. In the small hours of Christmas eve, miles from anywhere the train is derailed and passengers are tossed around or jolted from their sleep. And a killer strikes. Now they are all alone and who is going to be next. It is down to our heroine Roz to take control and find the killer before there are more bodies to be found.
What I really enjoyed about Murder on the Christmas Express is the complex characters and just how the storyline flowed and the twists and turns that keeps the reader guessing. The train is going nowhere and it is a race against time to find the killer. Roz has her candidates but now she has to catch the killer. Probably not the book to read if you are heading to the Scottish Highlands on a sleeper on Christmas eve. There are a number of fun quiz games and anagrams to keep you involved as you read, in a similar frame as last Christmases offering from Alexandra Benedict.
All told I would be happy to recommend to anyone looking for a Christmas based crime novel. There are a number of themes involved in the story but I really enjoyed Murder on the Christmas Express.
Murder on the Christmas Express by Alexandra Benedict is Published by Simon & Schuster and is now available in hardback through Waterstones, Amazon and through your local independent bookshop or through Bookshop.org that supports your local independent bookshop. UK Bookshop.org