Shades Of Words

The Mystery of the Blue Train


Every once in a while I like to immerse myself in a good British mystery novel. And the “The Mystery of the Blue Train” was just that.
It begins with the initial several chapters of introduction of seemingly distantly related characters each with their own nuances, dark secrets and ambitions. The tone for murder is set early and if you have read enough of Agatha Christie you can easily predict the following things

-> The murder will happen in/on/at the “subject” mentioned in the title ( Blue train)
-> Several of the aforementioned characters will also be in the vicinity of the murder
->  Timing of the murder will be extremely crucial
->  What actually happened and what a witness saw would be different
->  The murderer would definitely be the least suspected character and if you were paying enough attention you could figure out how

In spite of all the above trademarks that make a cozy Hercule Poirot mystery, Blue Train is an interesting enough story where the fun part is actually discovering clues along with Poirot and sort of putting them together. It’s quite complex and I believe its better than some of the recent Agatha Christie’s that I have read

The premise is simple – Mrs Kettering, an heiress, is murdered for priceless rubies as she travels on a train to meet her lover in France. Several people would have wanted her dead – her husband – who stands to inherit her millions OR her lover – who is famous for swindling women in high society OR  a Frenchman- who is interested in her jewels OR just a train robber who knows that the jewels are aboard. Who could it be?

Poirot is also on the train, and graciously offers his services to the French Police to help with the case. Which he does. To find out more read the book!!

Poirot has never been known to be modest but in this book he is so far from it that it almost seems out of character. He actually states somewhere that – ” he is the greatest detective in the world”. Found that a little weird.’

Verdict : I really enjoyed it and it was one of the better Poirot mysteries

PS – Check out Zoya’s review at


Author: Vipula

Before talking about who we are, we’d like to tell you a bit about how and why Shades of Words came into being. It all started with the idea of “A place where we could share with likeminded people about things we enjoy. From books to music to movies to travel; Shades of Words was to be a place about the best of our experiences” We thought about why should anyone read us? The answer was that whatever we review would be a mix of our experience of the thing along with interesting and useful information about it. So in case you are reading us regularly or even checking us out once in a while then we have succeeded in our efforts someway somewhere. Who are we? Known as Kapil Sood and Vipula Gupta, we thought of Shades of Words on one fine Sunday afternoon. Tired of writing interesting RFP’s and project documentation; we decided to give this a shot. Yes! We work in Indian IT industry. Cupid struck us while were innocently slogging together on the highly intricate job of formatting and beautifying documents! And since then, we have been working together to establish Shades of Words as a place that we can claim as ours. (Because buying a house is still years away!) What else? Kapil also writes some blogs which you can read here and here.

4 thoughts on “The Mystery of the Blue Train

  1. I was tempted to pick this book at the NPL last weekend but favored short stories over this. Your statement on Poirot confused me a bit…are you saying he’s not modest at all?

  2. Yes he is never modest..but never so immodest as he is in this book.
    Did you pick up Poirot Short Stories – I think they are pretty brilliant!!

    • I forgot that you had read this book. 🙂 I went through a couple of books after this and realized how true it is. Poirot is rarely modest and on most occasions seems to employ Hastings as his personal mascot. Did you read “Elephants can remember” and if not, do read it. Its got this element of humor I can’t seem to shake off.

      • @Zoya – I must have read “Elephants can remember” at school I remember a phase in 9th and 10th grade where I devoured every Poirot novel in the library. Maybe its time to go back and read it again

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