“There’s a train you want to catch in Sheldon Russell’s terrific historical crime novel THE INSANE TRAIN. … [Protagonist] Hook [Runyon] sets the rugged-but-sensitive tone of this outstanding series, which delivers thrilling action, great scenery and a full cast of complex characters searching for peace in a troubled postwar environment.”--New York Times
"The story unfolds with the stark clarity of a Clint Eastwood movie, underscored with rough, laconic humor and driven by strong characterizations and a powerful sense of time and place. The insights into railroad life and the treatment of the insane...flesh out the suspenseful storyline, as does the low-key romance between Hook, a complex man with an unexpected passion for collecting rare books, and a lonely, dedicated young nurse. Fresh and original, it's easily one of the best mysteries of the year."
"This atmospheric historical crime novel is a thrilling ride." --San Francisco Chronicle
"Russell's acute sense of the historical elevates "The Insane Train." Russell excels at sharp dialogue and believable characters. "The Insane Train" chugs along at a brisk pace as it skillfully depicts a slice of American history."--Florida Sun Sentinel
"Sharply sketched characters and a vivid sense of place and time...highlighted the first Hook Runyon novel, The Yard Dog. This one has both of those attributes and adds sad but fascinating insights into the treatment of mental patients; the sclerotic, self-important rail industry; and the lingering pain of the Great Depression. A fine crime novel made even richer with solid historical background." --Booklist
"Russell’s book is full of well-drawn characters, especially the homeless veterans who have returned to take up the wandering ways they’d lived during the Depression. Readers who enjoy exploring out-of-the-way corners of history will like the details about railroads and care of the mentally ill in 1940s that the author has used to help set the stage. For fans of historical mysteries." --Library Journal
"...a fresh take on the classic 1940's noir mystery with a mesmerizing plot, intriguing characters and an interesting setting. It's another great read from this talented author." --FreshFiction.com
"A nail biter to the last page, this 1940’s noir style tome is an excellent read." -- Crimespree Magazine