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The Last Train to Scarborough (Jim Stringer Book 6) [Kindle Edition]

Andrew Martin
3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (43 customer reviews)

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Product Description

Amazon Review

In such books as The Necropolis Railway and The Blackpool Highflyer, Andrew Martin forged something highly original in the historical crime field (no easy task): the author’s adroit evocation of the great age of the steam locomotive was the perfect backdrop for crime narratives of genuine panache, and this long-distant (but fondly remembered) world is conjured with a consummate skill. The new book, The Last Train to Scarborough, is proof that Martin’s skills are as sharply honed as ever, and (thankfully) he has not been distracted by his burgeoning second career as an authority on household management (!) – a second career that the drily sardonic author seems bemused by.

The Last Train to Scarborough, Andrew Martin’s new excursion into the Edwardian past, has his resourceful ex-railway-worker-turned-detective Jim Stringer tackling an assignment he is not comfortable with: he is to take lodgings in a dismal off-season Scarborough. Jim is to stay at a house called (ironically) 'Paradise’, from which the last railwayman to stay there has mysteriously vanished. What is it that Jim Stringer’s chief inspector isn’t telling him about the case? And two other questions soon become very pressing: will the beguiling Amanda Rickerby put a spoke in Jim Stringer’s marriage? And will Stringer himself ever be riding the railway back to his York haunts again?

As before, this is delicious stuff, showing not an iota of tiredness with the railway detective scenario. The author’s obvious love for his atmospheric milieu, his period – and his characters – pays dividends once again. --Barry Forshaw

Book Description

A new adventure for Andrew Martin's celebrated 'Steam Detective' Jim Stringer.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 398 KB
  • Print Length: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Faber & Faber Crime (5 Mar. 2009)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (43 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #157,549 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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More About the Author

Andrew Martin grew up in Yorkshire. After qualifying as a barrister, he won The Spectator Young Writer of the Year Award, 1988. Since, he has written for The Guardian, the Daily and Sunday Telegraph, the Independent and Granta, among many other publications. His columns have appeared in the Independent on Sunday and the New Statesman. His Jim Stringer novels - railway thrillers - have been published by Faber and Faber since 2002.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
17 of 17 people found the following review helpful
I have read all the reviews by readers of this series and don't understand the mixed response. Technically these books are excellent evoking a sense of the past particularly with regard to place. Characters are interesting and Jim Stringer's adventures hook me in every time. I like his character; I like the style of narration very much and recognise authentic use of colloquial working class speech in a man who is intelligent though not well educated in the early 1900s.
Of all the books and I've enjoyed every one, I think I most admire the techniques employed in Death on a Branch Line. The village is deserted except for a few quirky characters doing nothing; the illusion of heat and stillness is convincingly oppressive yet the story is a page-turner; plot is pitched against the clock as a man is about to be hanged unjustly. Events take place over a sleepy Bsnk Holiday weekend. This is brilliant control of narrative. I look forward to the next book and the one after that...

Dorothy Nelson
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "Marmite...." 3 Aug. 2011
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Just read "The Last Train to Scarborough" on holiday - and thoroughly enjoyed it - five stars as usual for a Jim Stringer detective novel.
I do see there's a wide disparity of reviews for this book - it seems it's a "Marmite" novel - people either love it or hate it (and I think that would apply to the other books in the series).The thing is I can see why - Andrew Martin's style is highly idiosyncratic and personal. Much of what the characters say seems irrelevant and almost deliberately confusing. There is heavy reliance throughout on regular italics for emphasis - except why particular words are emphasised in this way is often as big a mystery as the plot itself.
The general "feel" of the narrative is almost dream like - almost nightmarish at times. It's as if the whole proceedings are enveloped in a dense Edwardian fog so you have to concentrate hard as what is going on and why. Andrew Martin's main asset is his uncanny ability to summon up a long gone era - how does he do it? It's as if you have gone back in a time machine and you are actually there. I read Sebastian Faulks' "Birdsong" some years ago and he has the same ability to transport the reader back in time - it's almost hypnotic and it's very effective. Up to a point plot in Jim Stringer novels is secondary to atmosphere so just enjoy it as you go along - although here the plot is (eventually) understandable which isn't always the case with other novels in the series.
So - if you fancy an atmospheric unusual well written detective story - just read this. You'll love it or hate it......
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
By Brian
This is one of those stories where you really have to get your brain cells into gear to get going with the plot. At first you wonder what on earth is happening; has the publisher missed out a few pages? But then, quite suddenly, it all clicks into shape and starts to move at a decent pace and you realise why the author has adopted this rather fragmented approach. The "hero" is a very likeable guy, down-to-earth and suitably 'grubby'. He is a working bloke and the narrative in first person very much portrays an Edwardian who wants to better himself but who has had no 'silver spoon' in his mouth to advance his career. There is a grittiness about the story and the basic street-language at times is fundamental to understanding the man, his life and his background. (However, in comparison to a great deal of modern fiction the language is unbelievably tame and restrained and really quite gentlemanly in a strange way.)
The plot is soft and plodding at times, but so is life. That it reaches a very satisfactory conclusion as a story is a credit to the author who has deservedly carved himself a substantial niche in this genre. A well structured novel which breaks away from the ordinary. Well worth a read.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Another excellent book in the series!! 15 May 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I first came across Andrew Martin when he did a TV documentary on the history of the railways in British literature and he mentioned he hoped his novels kept alive in a small way that tradition. Out of interest I read the first Jim Stringer novel and I've now read six of the current seven available!!

They are a good light read with lots of historical references to the railways as they were during the Edwardian period in which they are set.

Very enjoyable and a lot of fun.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Another excellent contribution to the series 25 Oct. 2010
By pastone
Another excellent contribution to this series of historical novels. This one is set in 1914, and succeeds (as usual) in vividly re-creating the era. Well written, and good at holding the reader's attention.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful evocation of the region 3 Aug. 2010
One reviewer criticised the double plot writing, but I thought this was a stroke of genius. Just when you thought you wanted to put the book down, you really needed to keep up with the next thought. Other books in this series are not as easy to read as this one, I was transformed to the actual places mentioned (especially as being a 'Yorkie')and could feel the period it was set in - right down to the gas lamps. Well written Andrew, can't wait for the next one.
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A wonderful, quirky tale. 18 Nov. 2009
This is the first 'Jim Stringer' book that I've read and what a delight it was.

Attracted by the wonderful front cover illustration and desperate to read a crime novel that was different, I picked it up by chance. From the first page I was hooked. The quirky, blunt dialogue that occurs between the characters had me grinning all the way to the last page. Contrary to some reviewers stating their dislike for the 'jumpy' chapters, I had no qualms about the style. I thought it was well executed and added to the intrigue of the storyline.

Despite not starting at the beginning of the series, I look forward to indulging in the rest of Mr Martin's 'Jim Stringer' novels with relish.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
excellent book
Published 15 days ago by J. Neal
2.0 out of 5 stars Boring.
Boring, struggled to finish it.
Published 17 days ago by Hotpot
2.0 out of 5 stars Not for me
I struggled on, with the book, hoping for better things, but I found it to be a very odd way of writing, not at all like the other Andrew Martin books I've read, which I've quite... Read more
Published 24 days ago by Rog
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book whole series is
Great book
whole series is good
Published 2 months ago by mr train man
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
a good read
Published 3 months ago by kevin hegarty
3.0 out of 5 stars I have now read all Jim Stringer books so now and can now offer a...
This book is a bit difficult to follow as the story takes place in two time zones, as Jim is recounting events from two days before and now. Read more
Published 3 months ago by R ELLIOTT
4.0 out of 5 stars Once again Andrew Martin takes us back to a different ...
Once again Andrew Martin takes us back to a different age of train travel. His obvious pleasure & research, has you walking beside
Jim Stringer, you can practically smell the... Read more
Published 6 months ago by D. I. Harris
1.0 out of 5 stars a book i binned, literally (sic)
I read this and looked forward to it. First railway detective i ever read. So, so ,so boring. I finished it just to prove that i was not wrong. Read more
Published 8 months ago by Mr spageti
5.0 out of 5 stars An absorbing tale, well-constructed
Running two elements of the same plot simultaneously must be hard to do, but Andrew Martin pulls it off. Read more
Published 8 months ago by 'Fountain Pen'
4.0 out of 5 stars serial mystery.
I am a bit of a fraud as I have only read the first three novels up to now and I am reading them in order,up to now they have been entertaining and absorbing,a working class man... Read more
Published 12 months ago by P. H. R. Hewitt
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