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Comment: This book has already been loved by someone else. It MIGHT have some wear and tear on the edges, have some markings in it, or be an ex-library book. Over-all itâ?TMs still a good book at a great price! (if it is supposed to contain a CD or access code, that may be missing)
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Hell Train Mass Market Paperback

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Frequently Bought Together

Hell Train + Bryant & May on the Loose: A Peculiar Crimes Unit Mystery + Ten Second Staircase: A Peculiar Crimes Unit Mystery (Peculiar Crimes Unit Mysteries (Bantam Paperback))
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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Solaris; 1 edition (December 27, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 9781907992445
  • ISBN-13: 978-1907992445
  • ASIN: 1907992448
  • Product Dimensions: 7.3 x 4.2 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 5.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #973,875 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Born in Greenwich, London, Christopher Fowler has written for film, television, radio, graphic novels, and for national newspapers. He is a regular columnist for both UK The Independent on Sunday and the Financial Times. Fowler is the multi-award winning author of more than thirty novels and ten short-story collections, including the lauded Bryant & May Peculiar Crimes Unit mystery novels. In 2010 was nominated for eight national book awards.

More About the Author

Christopher Fowler was born in Greenwich, London. He is the multi award-winning author of thirty novels and twelve short story collections, and the author of the Bryant & May mystery novels. His first bestseller was 'Roofworld'. Subsequent novels include 'Spanky', 'Disturbia', 'Psychoville' and 'Calabash'. His books have been optioned by Guillermo Del Toro ('Spanky') and Jude Law ('Psychoville'). He spent many years working in film. His memoir of growing up without books, entitled 'Paperboy', was highly acclaimed, and was followed by a sequel in April 2013, 'Film Freak'. After this came his dark comedy-thriller 'Plastic' in July 2013.

He has written comedy and drama for BBC radio, including Radio One's first broadcast drama in 2005. He writes for the Financial Times and the Independent on Sunday, Black Static magazine and many others. His graphic novel for DC Comics was the critically acclaimed 'Menz Insana'. His short story 'The Master Builder' became a feature film entitled 'Through The Eyes Of A Killer', starring Tippi Hedren and Marg Helgenberger. In the past year he has been nominated for 8 national book awards. He is the winner of the Edge Hill prize 2008 for 'Old Devil Moon', and the Last Laugh prize 2009 for 'The Victoria Vanishes'.

He wrote the 'War Of The Worlds' videogame for Paramount with Sir Patrick Stewart. He is currently rehearsing his play 'Falling Stars' in preparation for a London debut.

Christopher has achieved several pathetic schoolboy fantasies, releasing a terrible Christmas pop single, becoming a male model, writing a stage show, posing as the villain in a Batman graphic novel, running a night club, appearing in the Pan Books of Horror, and standing in for James Bond.

His short stories have appeared in Best British Mysteries, The Time Out Book Of London Short Stories, Dark Terrors, London Noir, Inferno, Neon Lit, Cinema Macabre, the Mammoth Book of Horror and many others. After living in the USA and France he is now married and lives in King's Cross, London and Barcelona, Spain.

Customer Reviews

Truly a thrill ride!
Frazer Lee
All in all this novel rises above the general horror, the author definitely shows an appreciation for classic horror as well as skill telling a dark tale.
Then when you get to the part on the train things get weird, and not in a good way.

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By L. Rigod on May 1, 2012
Format: Mass Market Paperback Verified Purchase
The year was 1966 and a screenwriter, Shane Carter arrives in Great Britain to attempt to snag a job with the greatest Horror filmmaker of it's day and age, Hammer Films. Shane notices the decay of the studio, but, this is hard times for the industry all over the world.

Almost too easily Shane is hired to write an epic in less than five days. For inspiration, Shane searches the library where he is set up and finds an old game board "The Hell Train."

The story takes off from that stage to one of the passengers upon the train. Fact mixes with Fantasy. Good versus evil emanates the pages as you read onwards.

This was a good old-fashioned horror story. It managed to make me feel uneasy and yet I had to continue reading to find the ending out. Find out the mystery of the Arkangel Train for yourself, but, perhaps in the daytime?
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Paul Campbell on February 29, 2012
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I've read any number of Fowler's short stories over the years (most of them in a Stephen Jones anthology) but I have to confess, I haven't read one of his novels in a very long time - and if `Hell Train' is anything to go by, I've been sorely missing out!

This is the author's first non Bryant & May mystery novel in over a decade, and it's short, fast and fun. As the rear cover blurb says, imagine there was a supernatural chiller that Hammer Films never made - a grand epic produced at the studio's peak. The framing story sees screenwriter Shane, newly arrived in England from the States, commissioned to write a screenplay in four days. And then we're off! Outside of a few brief visits back to Shane and the folks at Hammer, the rest of the book presents a `novelization' of the screenplay he is supposedly writing: that of four passengers meeting on a train journey through Eastern Europe during the First World War. And it is a journey of trials, a journey which seeks to set them tasks which prey upon each of their weaknesses. And as fitting an affectionate tongue-in-cheek homage to the glory days of British horror movies, there are monsters, blood, bared flesh and lots of screaming. All manipulated by the dark machinations of The Conductor. As Kim Newman says on the front cover this is a "... rattling, roaring yarn!"

Four years ago Fowler published the short story "Arkangel", set in the Polish town of Chelmsk and featuring the same train, town yokels and others found is this present novel. But `Hell Train' it no mere expansion of that original short story, as it is a complete reimagining. Indeed, the tone is entirely differently and reminded me of the giddy pleasure of reading Guy Adams's recent novel `The World House' (2010).
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Alan A. Elsner VINE VOICE on January 15, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This moderately entertaining novel is a love letter to the cheesy British Hammer movies of the 1950s and 1960s which brought harmless horror into the lives of the straitlaced English public.

An American scriptwriter down on his luck shows up at the seedy country mansion headquarters of Hammer and is given a week to come up with a script. It has to involve a train.

Soon, we are deep in Transylvania on board a mysterious and sinister locomotive headed for hell with a bunch of zombie passengers and a small collection of characters, each of whom will be tested to see if they too will face eternal damnation. The main characters are three British cliches and one local Romanian village girl.

The author has great fun evoking every classic image of the genre - the clockwork doll that comes to life; the evil insect that bores through flesh; the corpse that rises from its coffin; the scantily-clad heroine gradually losing her undergarments; the vicar clutching his crucifix; the torn-off limbs, skeletal faces and images of loved ones long gone - and many more.

It's amusing reading this for a while but it eventually gets a bit tired because we the readers have little reason to empathize with any of the characters. Eventually, the plot like the train runs off the rails and explodes in a welter of metaphysical speculation. An incredibly lame back story set in the studio doesn't help.

I put this down as a valiant half-success - nice idea that doesn't quite support a fully-realized novel.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Jeff on April 18, 2012
Format: Mass Market Paperback
"Hell Train" is the first novel (or story of any type) of Christopher Fowler's that I've read. And I loved every minute of it. The novel is a quick-read, not because of its actual length but because the action and dialogue push the reader along at a supernatural pace. I could not put the book down!

The first part of the story is great for people who grew up watching Hammer films such as Dracula and Frankenstein. It is an interesting view into the world of that studio and its eventual demise.

The second part of the story is the real meat, though. It has the chills and action that draw a horror novel reader with compelling characters and a true sense of evil flowing without. I have to admit that I'm a bit of a sucker for novels with mysteries on trains, and this novel pulled me in immediately. The best part about this bit is that it's treated like the story it is. The reader knows that this is just a script for a Hammer film, and that takes it to a new level!

I will definitely pick up another book by this author. I enjoyed this one immensely, and I look forward to the next.
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