“Not since Agatha Christie sent her characters hurtling along the rails toward Murder on the Orient Express has a fictional train ride been as exciting as Warren Adler’s tale of intrigue.” - King Features Syndicate
American cancer specialist, Dr. Alex Cousins is on a covert mission to the USSR. He is tasked with prolonging the life of Soviet Politburo Chief, Viktor Moiseyevich Dimitrov, who is suffering from advance stage leukemia. But the tenuous confidence between the unlikely cohorts is shattered one night as Alex accidentally discovers Dimitrov’s diabolical plans of a nuclear strike on China. Alex soon finds himself dispatched, homeward bound on a 6000 mile journey aboard the Trans-Siberian Express; long enough, Alex realizes, to silence him from alerting the U.S. of the imminent destruction.
Reluctant, at first, to embark upon the journey, Alex is beckoned into the Siberian expanse by the haunting memories of his grandfather, Aleksandr Kuznetzov, who wove tales of magic and mystery breathing an ethereal life into this seemingly desolate place. As the train lumbers east across snow-cloaked mountains, glimmering past the forest glow, a watchful eye rests on the American doctor. Surrounding him are people beaten and broken by life, each drawn to this emperor of trains in search of a brighter future. Most curious is Anna Petrovna Valentinova, the gorgeous history professor, and Alex’s alluring travelling companion. As Anna enchants Alex with the love for her homeland, a passionate romance, transcending political implications, unfolds under KGB surveillance.
A train attendant yearns for love, a deformed man seeks revenge on an old enemy, and a persecuted Jewish couple runs to a new home as the Trans-Siberian Express roars onward through a cavern of hopes and memories, coloring its tracks with tales of love, loss and nuclear intrigue, from one end of Russia to the other. An epic journey across a land and a people Winston Churchill declared, “a riddle wrapped in a mystery inside an enigma.”