You’re on a train

A train is a great setting for a novel because it inherently heightens the tension and conflict – the characters are all trapped together, with a limited number of chances (station stops) to leave. Enjoy this handful of books set on trains.

Bullet Train by Kōtarō Isaka
Five assassins board the Shinkansen train from Tokyo to Morioka: Nanao  needs to grab a suitcase and then get off; duo Tangerine and Lemon also need the suitcase, and to deliver the rescued son of a crime lord; the Prince is lying in wait for an assassin who wants him dead, and Kimura has come to kill the Prince for injuring his son. As the train hurtles forward, the assassins fill the tight corridors, each trying to take out the competition.

Murder on the Orient Express by Agatha Christie
Traveling from Syria to Paris, the Orient Express is halted by a snowdrift on the tracks. The passengers discover that a wealthy American has been stabbed to death, in a train compartment locked from the inside. The killer must be on the train. Luckily, ace detective Hercule Poirot is also on board, and on the case. What list of train novels would be complete without this classic mystery?

Peaces by Helen Oyeyemi
Otto and Xavier Shin have been gifted a remarkable honeymoon gift by Xavier’s aunt: a trip onboard a former tea-smuggling train with an unknown destination. This is no ordinary train, but instead is seemingly curated just for them. Indeed, they appear to be alone on the train, until they meet a secretive woman with a surprising message.

Blood on the Tracks edited by Martin Edwards
Part of the British Library Crime Classics series, this anthology gathers together 15 classic mystery short stories set on trains.

Snowpiercer by Jacques Lob
Following an environmental catastrophe that has brought about a new ice age, humanity now survives on a 1,001 car train called the Snowpiercer in this graphic novel. It mimics the hierarchy of the world we lost, with the elite traveling in luxury at the front and things getting progressively more miserable toward the back. But impending mechanical failure; a virus; and human greed are about to throw everything into chaos.

~ posted by Andrea G.


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