Wednesday, December 28, 2011

The Christmas Train by David Baldacci

The Christmas Train was a very light read and perfect for the holiday hustle and bustle time when trying to concentrate on something more literary would be onerous. Tom Langdon, an international journalist, who has been forbidden to fly for two years by the TSA, boards a train in Washington, D.C. bound for California where he will meet his girlfriend, Leila for the Christmas holidays.

Of course, on the train is a plethora of characters, all of whom will get some attention. There is the tarot card reader, the retired priest, a couple who plans to marry on the train, the movie producer, train attendant, a bartender - Elvis impersonator, and Eleanor, a woman whom Tom loved with all his heart a few years ago, but who had broken off the relationship. It almost seemed like a Love Boat, but set on a train. To add a bit to the adventure, there is a thief on board who is pilfering object from the passengers. Think Murder on the Orient Express except this is theft. Trains are great backdrops for crime!

The train wends its way across the country and the characters form those kinds of bonds that happen when traveling in a group. From Chicago on, Baldacci begins foreshadowing a vicious storm that threatens the Rockies. It is inevitable that it will impact this trip. The reader must suspend belief a bit to think that meteorologists with today's instruments can be so far wrong in the prediction of a major weather event.

The book is certainly not a piece of serious literary quality, but was a fun read for the holiday season.

No comments: