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The Blackpool Highflyer by Andrew Martin
The Blackpool Highflyer brings back Jim Stringer, the railwayman in Edwardian England, now a fireman on the Halifax to Blackpool run. The Highflyer was the fastest train in the country at the time, and on one excursion hauling the employees of the Hind Mill, someone attempts to deliberately derail the train. A woman is killed, and Jim sets out to find out who was behind it. His search is set at a time of change, not just for the technology of the railroads, but for the political and economic forces of the new century. Andrew Martin's novel has received mostly positive reviews for its portrayal of the working-class hero and a bygone era. The Guardian says, "There is no one else who is writing like Andrew Martin today, and it is a puzzle why such an original and readable novelist does not attract more attention."