On the way back from Syria, Hercule Poirot takes the Orient Express. Oddly enough the train is very crowded for the time of year. While on the trip, Poirot is approached by a Mr. Ratchett who tries to hire Poirot to be his man sort of. Poirot doesn’t like the look of Ratchett and refuses. On the second night of the journey, Poirot hears a noise coming from Ratchett’s compartment, but later hears the man respond to the conductor’s question that nothing was the matter. A number of strange things happen that night including a woman in a scarlet kimono who bumps the door to his compartment. Oh yes! the train is stopped due to a snow storm.
The next morning, Poirot discovers that Ratchett is dead a victim of 12 stab wounds. The wounds are all different types-some deep and some shallow, some by a right handed person and some by a left handed person. Trying to solve the crime is quite a job because there seems to be a lot of evidence. It points to various people, and when part of the evidence is found in Poirot’s own cabin, its clear than some if not all of the evidence has been planted.
The strange thing about all the people in this particular car is the amount of nationalities present- Italian, Swedish, Russion, German, and a Scotsman. The only place to find that kind of diversity would be America. As it turns out, Ratchett’s true name is Cassetti. Years before, Cassetti kidnapped a 3 year old named Daisy Armstrong who was also an heiress. He asked for ransom, but killed the child anyway. The girl’s mother went into premature labor and died along with the child. The girl’s father committed suicide. The maid was suspected and jumped out of the window. She was cleared later on.
I’m not going to tell you who did it. I hope I told you enough to intrigue you! This was a convoluted mystery.