Murder on the Orient Express, Week 2

Welcome to Week 2 of our Online Book Club discussion of Murder on the Orient Express!

How did reading the first section go for you all? I had a little bit of trouble getting in to the book. There are just so many details!

This first section introduces Hercule Poirot, and the crime he is going to have to solve. What are your first impressions of Poirot? He's a little like Sherlock Holmes in that he can deduce a lot from just a few clues. Poirot is certainly not afraid to speak his mind, is he? Could you believe that he refused to help Ratchett, and he told Ratchett that he wouldn't help because he didn't like Ratchett's face? That was pretty cold. 

We know that Ratchett was murdered, and the clues left at the scene may or may not be fake. Poirot thinks it is a little too convenient that there was both a pipe brush and a woman's handkerchief at the scene. It seems like someone was trying to leave distinct clues, so nobody could deduce if the murderer was a man or a woman.

Poirot does find a more important clue at the scene: a scrap of burned paper that reveals that Ratchett wasn't really named Ratchett. Instead, he was a gangster named Cassetti, who kidnapped and murdered a little girl named Daisy Armstrong. 

That gives us a motive for Ratchett/Cassetti's murder: Someone wanted revenge for Daisy's death. But we don't really have any more concrete details. 

Do you have any guesses about the murder? Share them in the comments, but if you've already read the book or watched the movie, make sure you don't leave any spoilers!

Did you know that you can still take rides on the Orient Express? It's not exactly like the train that Poirot would have ridden on, but it's still luxurious and elegant. If you want to learn more about the Orient Express now, check out this article from People and this one from the Telegraph, too. Both articles have great photos of the inside of the train cars. 

Make sure you read the next section before joining us next week. You'll get a full view of all of the evidence, so by the time you comment next week, you may have figured out the mystery. I hope to hear from you in the comments section!