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  • Location: St Mary Mead (fictional), London

4.50 from Paddington (Miss Marple)

4.50 from Paddington (Miss Marple)

Why a Booktrail?

1930s: If you witnessed a murder on a passing train what would you do? Who would believe you?

  • ISBN: 978-0007120826
  • Genre: Crime, Mystery, Thriller

What you need to know before your trail

A murder mystery set on two passing trains. On one, Elspeth McGillicuddy says she has witnessed a murder. As she was watching out of her window, she explains that she saw a man gripping and strangling a woman by the throat. The body falls to the floor but before she can see anything else the train has passed.

Elspeth tells her story but no one believes her – well it’s not as if there were any other witnesses and there’s not even a body. But Miss Marple thinks there is something in her story and so starts her very own investigation.

Travel Guide

Even the title sounds like the start of a journey. All aboard? then step on to the train with Mrs McGillicuddy takes the 4.50 from Paddington to visit her friend Miss Marple. She enjoys people watching as much as the next person but is shocked and rooted to the spot when she sees a man on the train passing by, strangling a woman.

Caught on a moving train with no one to turn to, what would you do? Who do you call and who is going to believe you? The act was so brutal and so quick, can you be sure you really saw what you think you did?

Miss Marple believes her and enlists her friend Lucy to help out. She gets a job as a cleaner in a house near to where the train was passing as they believe this place may hold secrets…

St Mary Mead

Miss Marple lives in this fictional yet delightful village which is situated some 25 miles from London and close to the fictional towns of Much Benham and Market Basing according to the novels. In the television adaptation of the novels, the village of Nether Wallop (it’s as if Agatha Christie named it herself) This is where Marple lives and the destination of the 4.50 from Paddington so is probably modelled on somewhere in Hampshire close (such as Nether Wallop)

The journey here is one from Paddington to St Mary Mead but it’s the landscapes, the rolling countryside and the  noise of the trains rattling along the tracks that provides the sights and sounds to evoke a train journey of times gone by.

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