Thursday, August 23, 2018

The Woman in the Window by A.J. Finn


First Line: Her husband's almost home.

Anna Fox is a recluse in her New York City home. Agoraphobic, she spends her days drinking wine, playing chess online, watching old movies, spying on her neighbors, but not stepping one foot outside her door.

Then the Russells move into the house across the way. The perfect family: a father, a mother, and their teenage son. But when Anna looks out her window one night, she sees something she shouldn't, and her world begins to fall apart. It's only then that Anna learns that no one and nothing is what it seems.

As I began to read The Woman in the Window, the thought ran through my mind that I would drive Anna Fox nuts. You see, I lived next door to a Peeping Tom as I was growing up, so I learned at a very early age to close the curtains once the sun goes down. You want to see something interesting? Move along down the street because you're not going to find it at this house!

As I read a little further, another thought crossed my mind. Why am I reading this book when Anna Fox is the type of character I don't like? I have few hot buttons when it comes to reading, but characters who drink to excess is one of them. Anna literally spends her days swilling wine and gobbling pills-- most of which her doctor has told her expressly not to take with alcohol. But I couldn't stop reading. In fact, I found myself reading faster, and I think I know why.

A.J. Finn made Anna Fox a compelling, sympathetic, "train wreck"  of a character. The sort of character that you know something bad is going to happen to, and you just have to keep reading to find out what that bad thing is and if she's going to survive it.

The second thing that had my eyeballs glued to the page was the way the story unfolded. Finn does an absolutely marvelous job of weaving old movies like "Gaslight" and references to such luminaries as Alfred Hitchcock and Agatha Christie into his story. Moreover, he does it in such a way that the end result's not a slavish imitation but something that keeps the gears whirring in your head while you smile, snuggle down deeper into your chair, and keep on reading.

There are two big secrets in The Woman in the Window. How did I do in uncovering them? I figured out one and could kick myself for not deducing the other. If you're in the mood for a story that has more twists and turns than San Francisco's Lombard Street, you really should get your hands on a copy of A.J. Finn's book. It's a good'un.


The Woman in the Window by A.J. Finn
eISBN: 9780062678447
HarperCollins © 2018
eBook, 430 pages

Thriller/Suspense, Standalone
Rating: A
Source: Purchased from Amazon.


 

10 comments:

  1. I keep hearing good things about this one, Cathy. And I agree: it takes a talented author to make me care about the sort of character I don't generally like. Hmm.....I think this one moves from radar to wish list.

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  2. I still have this on my list. I enjoyed A.J. Finn's first book and meant to keep up with her, but so far have not managed to do so.

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    1. There must be another author with the same name, Jenclair. This particular A.J. Finn is male, and The Woman in the Window is his first novel.

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  3. Well, I agree with you. I think this book is much better than most "Girl" books, riveting and mostly plausible. I've read too many books where the resolution has me scratching my head for days. Not so here.

    I did guess the secret about the protagonist and forgave her the substance abuse. I sort of guessed the perpetrator but not the intricate goings on across the street.

    In the last two years I've read a lot of psychological suspense books and this is one of the best. I could not put the book down and I was interested in it, not just turning pages.

    Oh, by the way, I guess Hollywood agrees it's a good book. It's being made into a movie with Amy Adams as Dr. Fox and Julianne Moore playing one of the characters across the street. Not sure which one.

    I hope Finn has another book coming out soon. However,

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    1. I guessed who and what was going on across the street.

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  4. I guessed the perpetrator but not the why and what was going on over there.

    I'm interested to see who Julianne Moore is playing; it's one of the across-the-street characters, I believe.

    This movie I will see.

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  5. There will also be a movie of "The Perfect Mother," with Kerry Washington. Read it - woman's baby is taken; friends start investigating. It becomes obvious who took the baby and why. But depending on the actors, it could be well-done.

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