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The Baghdad Railway Club

(Jim Stringer #8)

3.59  ·  Rating details ·  179 ratings  ·  26 reviews
Baghdad 1917. Captain Jim Stringer, invalided from the Western Front, has been dispatched to investigate what looks like a nasty case of treason. He arrives to find a city on the point of insurrection, his cover apparently blown - and his only contact lying dead with flies in his eyes. As Baghdad swelters in a particularly torrid summer, the heat alone threatens the lives ...more
Hardcover, 291 pages
Published June 7th 2012 by Faber Faber (first published June 1st 2012)
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Average rating 3.59  · 
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Sam Woodfield
Jun 07, 2012 rated it liked it
I'm a big fan of detective/ murder mystery type reads, and so I was looking forward to discovering a new series when I picked up this novel. However, for me there was something missing which prevented this being a great mystery story.
The story follows Jim Stringer as he is posted to Baghdad during the First World War to do what appears to be railway reconnaissance. Upon arriving, he finds that an ally has been killed, and he has reason to believe that there is a traitor in the ranks.
This has the
Rohit Nair
Jun 03, 2015 rated it did not like it
Don't know how many times i almost gave up on this book. Unbelievably dull. Clearly, Jim Stringer is not one for me.
Chris Gillies
Jul 13, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The penultimate in the Stringer series, but another comfortable ramble through the railwaying world, this time in the oven-esque setting of Baghdad late in WW1. As ever, Martin sets the scene with ease, and as ever you read through the book with a sense of rose-tinted nostalgia for when days was simpler guv, whilst at the same time throwing in red herring after real herring after red herring. And then, out of nowhere, comes the conclusion and wrapping up of the case.

Except this time, the end was
I really want to like the novels by Andrew Martin, but they never quite hit the mark. Also, I don't know why, but I never really warm to the main character, Jim Stringer.

First the good part: Martin is very good at capturing the atmosphere of the time and place and the choice of Baghdad in this book during WW1 certainly appealed to my curiosity.

...and the not so good part: the story , for me, tended to lose momentum on occasions and the conclusion seemed to lack a certain drama and excitement
Keith Hamilton
Mar 20, 2017 rated it liked it
The novel is set in Baghdad 1917. Captain Jim Stringer, invalided from the Western Front, has been sent to investigate what looks like a case of treason. He arrives to find a city in uproar, his cover apparently blown - and his only contact, Boyd, lying dead with flies in his eyes. As Baghdad swelters in a torrid summer, the British soldiers who occupy the city after kicking out the Turks suffer in the heat. Many of the local Arabs are none too friendly towards the British either.

Aside from his
Jun 23, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Readable, but ... it's one of those annoying stories where nobody ever tells anybody else anything, because if they did the plot would fall apart. I found the character of Jim Stringer a bit annoying, too. He never actually does any detecting, just wanders about in a stupor whilst events unfold around him.
Puddle Jumper
Another one I wouldn't have picked up if I didn't 'need' a book set in Iraq for my list... but I enjoyed it. No hockey (surprise) but there was a Lt Col Shepherd (a 'loose cannon, prone to getting into scrapes whether at school, university or in the army'). Fascinated as much by the history as the mystery.

country #24 Iraq
Mar 30, 2018 rated it it was ok
If you are a railway buff you should enjoy this book. I found it boring until the last 50 pages or so where it got slightly better.
Jul 01, 2017 rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2017
2, old-fashioned, definitely for rail enthusiasts, it did have an interesting plot but it took the first half of the book to get there
Aug 23, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: own
Another wonderful story about York detective, Jim Stringer; this is now his 8th outing.

Recuperating from wounds and his time on the Western Front; Jim, in his Army persona is promoted to Captain Stringer and tasked to uncover a traitor following the fall of Baghdad.

As always railways and steam locomotion are the real stars of these beautifully written books and this is no exception. Indeed it is more exotic as it covers the railways of Mesopotamia around the summer of 1917. Jim gets to drive the
Jan 21, 2013 rated it really liked it
Jim stringer is selected by Shepherd to be sent off to help in the railways at Baghdad. Stringer's secret job is to investigate a suspected treason committed by Shepherd. Jim Stringer tries to collect information about another official (Boyd)'s murder as inconspicuously as permitted but his facade slips every so often. Will Stringer be murdered by the suspected traitor before he unravels the truth? Or will justice be served?

Now, the books uses plenty of railway and military words to the extent
John Murray
Aug 26, 2012 rated it it was amazing
I find Andrew Martin's Jim Stringer books totally absorbing and by chapter 3, The Baghdad Railway Club is no exception. I so enjoy these books I'm tempted to give each one 4 or 5 stars but judging by the score this book has, I guess his gritty matter-of-fact style is not to everyone's taste.
Plausibility is a big factor for me; I'm unable to suspend my disbelief for contrivances of convenience that some authors base their plots on: Andrew Martin's plots contain the odd convenient coincidence but
Martin Hollands
Dec 17, 2015 rated it really liked it
Another of the Inspector Stringer novels and I found it interesting and informative reading. Given the amount of coverage we have had looking back at the various World Wars I was interested to see how it fitted in with my knowedge and understanding of the events that occurred over in France and Belgium in the early years of WW1.

This is a well crafted and enthralling story that takes historical fact and interweaves into the fabric a series of crimes and mysteries that keep you engaged. The
Jun 05, 2012 rated it liked it
This book is based around the main character of Jim Stringer, who is sent to Baghdad to investigate treason, whilst also working on the railways. When he arrives he finds that his only contact is already dead, there are dangers and enemies everywhere and on top of that he doesnt really like the heat!
I think this book would most likely appeal to men and especially those with an interest in railways. Having said that I read this as a female with no particular interest in railways and found it an
Dec 27, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: detective
Jim Stringer is never going to go down as one of the great detectives. Things tend to happen around him and he succeeds almost despite himself.

The joy of this series, however, is in the historical detail. Martin brilliantly evokes the time and place of the early 20th century with the occasional sly poke at the present day.

It's also interesting to read a book set in the first world war that isn't about the Western Front.
Jun 05, 2012 rated it it was ok
Second of the books in the Jim Stringer series I have tried to read (first one was The Blackpool Highflyer). On the plus side I finished this one (last one I stopped after 100 pages as could not get into it). It seemed to have less details of the railway in it and more of the thriller, but still not enough of the later and I still dont like the voice of the main character. Not a book I therefore enjoyed and I won't be reading any more of this series.
Peter Lees
Feb 13, 2015 rated it really liked it
The story is quite quirky and took me a while to get into it. The characters seem somehow to be out of place and not believable, or should I say, very 'British'. Once I had settled in to the story, however, I became hooked. The story has many twists and turns making it both a great adventure and solid mystery. I look forward to reading more of this author.
Brian Williams
Apr 01, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A good murder mystery story -- the real killer is only revealed at the very end. Lots of red herring characters too. Interesting back story about the British in Mesopotamia (now Iraq) in WW1. There's not as much focus on railway lore as in previous books in the series, but railways are still the mainstay of Jim Stringer's role.
Fraser Cook
Sep 18, 2012 rated it really liked it
Another wryly amusing and exciting addition to the series. Stringer such an unlikely and likeable hero, he gets results by luck as much as judgement, his descriptions of the world around him hilarious. The war in the Iraq desert far removed from the Edwardian world of York station setting of the early books.
Sep 25, 2013 rated it really liked it
I was nearly devastated. At first I could not see another Jim Stringer book to read. However a new one was published last year. I love these books. This one was not quite so grim as the last two, but very topical with Isis pushing close to Baghdad and bringing the disastrous state of affairs back to our news reporting, which it should never have left.
Jul 11, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: murders
This is the best one so far - the ending is spectacularly devious, the personalities are intriguing and the detective is very sexy in an understated un-James-Bond like way. The descriptions of steam locomotive mechanics are a bit nerdy but it's only a minor glitch.
Jun 12, 2012 rated it liked it
felt wasn't as good as the previous book in the series that the author had lost his way abit still enjoyed the read and also felt the ending was a bit rushed and was a bit slow getting going this time round
Lynne - The Book Squirrel
Didn't inspire me at all, it was dull, the characters just had no personality - just did not do anything for me at all.
Yorky Caz
May 06, 2016 rated it liked it
Sep 17, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I enjoy this series and glad to see there is another scheduled.
Andy Kearsey
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Aug 10, 2014
Josh West
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Dec 11, 2014
Mr. Walter Pearson
rated it it was amazing
Feb 26, 2018
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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,

Other books in the series

Jim Stringer (9 books)
  • The Necropolis Railway (Jim Stringer, #1)
  • The Blackpool Highflyer (Jim Stringer, #2)
  • The Lost Luggage Porter
  • Murder at Deviation Junction (Jim Stringer, #4)
  • Death on a Branch Line (Jim Stringer, #5)
  • The Last Train to Scarborough (Jim Stringer, Railway Detective, #6)
  • The Somme Stations
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