Book Review: The Woman in the Window by A.J Finn

What’s it about?

What did she see?

It’s been ten long months since Anna Fox last left her home. Ten months during which she has haunted the rooms of her old New York house like a ghost, lost in her memories, too terrified to step outside.

Anna’s lifeline to the real world is her window, where she sits day after day, watching her neighbours. When the Russells move in, Anna is instantly drawn to them. A picture-perfect family of three, they are an echo of the life that was once hers.

But one evening, a frenzied scream rips across the silence, and Anna witnesses something no one was supposed to see. Now she must do everything she can to uncover the truth about what really happened. But even if she does, will anyone believe her? And can she even trust herself?

My thoughts

This was our book club choice for January and overall, for our group, a pretty good pick!

Anna is agoraphobic, living online and on a diet of red wine and various pills.  It’s fair to say she’s been through some serious shit.  She spends her days counselling others on a specialist site, watching old thrillers and drinking!

Kudos to the author, he’s managed to take the best plot devices of several hugely popular books and movies and create his own book.  Within the first few pages I’d already begun to pick out The Girl on the Train, within the next few chapters it drove me to watch Rear Window (a movie I love…no hardship), there were also elements of Gone Girl – so not highly original but thrilling just the same.

I’ve not read any books featuring an agoraphobic protagonist and in all honesty know little on the subject.  What I read in this book about Anna’s situation, I can’t honestly say whether I thought it realistic or not.  I don’t know if agoraphobics can or are able to go out under certain conditions and this character left her house 3 times that I recall, they weren’t pictured as easy, in fact highly stressful – but still, would that be possible?  I assume the author will have researched the condition and therefore have to presume it is.

I liked the short, sharp, punchy chapters that constantly left you wanting just one more, as all good thrillers do and all the references to the Hitchcock movies like Vertigo.  I totally get how watching these kind of movies could enhance your senses, especially if you’ve sunk a few bottles of red.  The one thing that really bugged me about this book though was Anna and the alcohol.  I appreciate that she needed to have a problem with alcohol in order to make the story work but jeez give a girl a break!

I thought there were 3 main threads to the plot which needed solving.  I rarely work out the twists but one of them I saw coming a mile off (thanks to a famous bald actor’s late 90s movie with an equally famous line…no spoilers here ;)).  Having said that, I didn’t see the rest coming at all!

If you’re a fan of the unreliable narrator thriller and Hitchcock movies then this is your next go to read!

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Small print for info
Source: Purchased
No of pages: 464
Publisher: Harper Collins