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The Somme Stations (Jim Stringer #7)

3.52 of 5 stars 3.52  ·  rating details  ·  112 ratings  ·  22 reviews
The Somme Stations plunges into the horrors of World War One trench combat. Stringer and his unit must undertake dangerous nocturnal assignments: driving the trains taking munitions to the front. Death is everywhere, as the trains travel through blasted surrealistic landscapes, and a single-minded military policeman continues to investigate a killing that occurred before t ...more
Hardcover, 287 pages
Published March 1st 2011 by Faber & Faber (first published January 1st 2011)
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Rob Kitchin
The Somme Stations is the seventh Jim Stringer railway detective series and the first I've read. It can certainly be read as a standalone. The strength of the book is in placing the reader in the lives of a small group of men as they go through their training and onwards to the frontline, and the historical detail concerning the use of miniature railway system to transport ammunition and supplies along the front. The lead character is rather unassuming character and relatively uncharismatic, whi ...more
Review from Badelynge
The Somme Stations is Andrew Martin's seventh book featuring Jim Stringer. The series usually follows Stringer's investigations as a Detective at the York office of the North Eastern Railway Police. This one though takes place during the First World War. It begins after most of the events in the book have concluded with Jim's wife writing letters to a friend as he recovers from injuries sustained during his time in France and with a murder charge hanging over him. How we got
Another enjoyable chapter in the adventures of Jim Stringer - Steam Detective, this time set during the First World War. Not having read much about this part of our history I cannot say whether it was true to life; I'm planning to wait for my father's verdict on the book as he is an avid reader of fiction and non fiction about the First World War. If I had one big problem with the book it was the ending which seemed a little rushed, with Jim jumping to conclusions that he'd apparently been nowhe ...more
Sharon Cook
This is seventh in a series but the first one I have read so you can read it as a stand alone novel.
If it hadn't been for the reading group I wouldn't have picked this book as I'm not a great fan of either war stories or railways but I have to say I was pleasantly surprised.
I found the characters very well drawn and genuinely concerned for them as the story progressed. The description of both the war and railways seem to also be well described in that I felt I had a good idea, and easily pictur
Nick Rennie
This was the first book I had read in Andrew Martin's series of novels about railway detective Jim Stringer.
It tells the tale of how Stringer and others who work on the train network in York join up for service in the First World War.
The story gives an insight into how battalions of amateur soldiers were formed from communities and pitched into the horrors of trench warfare on the Western Front.
There are tensions in the group and not everyone gets on.
When one of the men dies and is presumed murd
Good things: good characterisation; earthiness in expression and good dialogue.

Bad things: clunky writing style, tripping my comprehension several times; factual mistakes - tin hats in the British Army in 1915!

The reason I stopped reading was that I don't like murder mysteries. I dislike the artificial way a writer has to construct a situation in which several people had motivation, opportunity and method. I stopped just after they arrived in France.

I only picked it up (50p charity shop) because
Very well constructed, and very involving. By the end of the book it is impossible to step back and see things from anyone else's point of view. I almost feel I AM Jim Stringer. Though profoundly glad that I was born when and where I was..... and next year will be 100 years since the start of the first world war so a very apposite time to be reading this - shall no doubt be exploring this further.
Cecilia Peartree
This is a fantastic book - I love the Jim Stringer series anyway, but as well as being a mystery story and another encounter with Jim and his wife (another of my favourite characters) this is also a briliiant account of the First World War which is completely different from any other version I have come across - moving without being sentimental, well written to the last detail.
An impressive narrative, starting with letters sent home from an army hospital, before going into the main story, and finally returning to the "present" day of the hospital to wrap up the plot.
As a whodunnit, I won't say anything, beyond that the author takes us well into the trenches, mainly the support trenches in line (haha) with the task of his characters.
Random book I picked up in the library. Found out part way that this was the latest book in the Jim Stringer series but characters where so well written it wasn't necessary to have read what had been before. A different take on the war stories but still very engaging. Really enjoyed it and have added the previous novels now to the "to read" list.
John Murray
Written in the author's typically earthy style, The Somme Stations is an eye-opening glimpse of life just behind the front-line. Shot through with mud, mystery, murder and betrayal, Jim Stringer is projected from family to The Front, where he meets more intrigue and bigotry that the Hun could ever throw at him: a thoroughly absorbing page turner.
Ian White
Very good, not one of the absolute best of the series, but certainly a solid entry. The war-time setting gave it a more epic scope than many of the others, which was an interesting variation. That's seven now, and they have never slipped into a formula; each one is completely distinct from the others.
Amicus (David Barnett)
I am usually averse to WW1 stories, feeling that the topic has been done to death in recent years, but am glad I read this highly original detective story, set, as the title suggests, on the Somme battlefield.

The story begins and ends in Yorkhire and would appeal to all with an interest in that county.
Fraser Cook
Another cracker in the series. Looking at the Great War through the terrified, amused and unassumingly heroic eyes Jim Stringer is an rewarding way to do so. The portrayal of the war is unflinching but never maudlin. This serious always keeps a sense of humour.
Simon Gosden
A delightful, old-style murder mystery set in 1915. Involving the men of the North eastern railway batallion. Superbly researched and masterfully written, a tale of ordinary men in extraordinary circumstances. Highly recommended.
Like most of the Jim Stringer series this is a reliably entertaining read. I felt the plot resolution to this one was a little unsatisfactory though.

One or two small errors in the Kindle edition.
Peter Auber
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
enjoyed the read but felt the ending was rushed though but liked the read about the somme
Good book differant view on the war and I enjoyed it the more for that
Audiobook read by Richard Burnip
Interesting story
Peg Price
Excellent story
Josh West
Josh West marked it as to-read
Dec 15, 2014
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Oct 26, 2014
Lainey Shaw
Lainey Shaw marked it as to-read
Oct 26, 2014
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Oct 20, 2014
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Builth Wells Read...: The Somme Stations 1 2 Jun 09, 2014 10:58AM  
Librarian Note: There is more than one author in the GoodReads database with this name. See this thread for more information.

Andrew Martin (born 6 July 1962) is an English novelist and journalist.

Martin was brought up in Yorkshire, studied at the University of Oxford and qualified as a barrister. He has since worked as a freelance journalist for a number of publications while writing novels, sta
More about Andrew Martin...
The Necropolis Railway (Jim Stringer, #1) Underground  Overground: A Passenger's History of the Tube The Lost Luggage Porter The Blackpool Highflyer (Jim Stringer, #2) Murder at Deviation Junction (Jim Stringer, #4)

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