- Hardcover: 448 pages
- Publisher: William Morrow; First Edition edition (January 2, 2018)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 9780062678416
- ISBN-13: 978-0062678416
- ASIN: 0062678418
- Product Dimensions: 6 x 1.4 x 9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 6,302 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #6,918 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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The Woman in the Window: A Novel Hardcover – January 2, 2018
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An Amazon Best Book of January 2018: The Woman in the Window is a seductive and unpredictable novel, like the Hitchcock movies to which author A.J. Finn pays homage. Finn’s protagonist Anna Fox is a child psychologist who lives alone in a New York suburb with a case of agoraphobia so debilitating she hasn’t left the house in months. To occupy her time Anna watches film noir classics from her vast collection, interacts with people online, and sometimes spies on her neighbors. It’s all very innocuous until she sees a horrible crime take place in the house across the park, recently inhabited by a new family. Call the police and report it, right? Things are a little more complicated for Anna—exacerbated by her routine consumption of prescription drugs with a lot of wine. Author A.J. Finn throws curve balls where you least expect them; I gasped out loud and in public, twice, while reading this novel because I was so taken by surprise. In the gap of time since Gone Girland The Girl on the Train we’ve been asking ourselves, when will we find the next big must-read psychological thriller? I think A.J. Finn’s The Woman in the Window answers that question. —Seira Wilson, Amazon Book Review
“The rocket fuel propelling The Woman in the Window, the first stratosphere-ready mystery of 2018, is expertise. . . . Dear other books with unreliable narrators: This one will see you and raise you.” (New York Times Book Review)
“The Woman in the Window is a tour de force. A twisting, twisted odyssey inside one woman’s mind, her illusions, delusions, reality. It left my own mind reeling and my heart pounding. An absolutely gripping thriller.” (Louise Penny, #1 New York Times bestselling author)
“There’s something irresistible about this made-for-the-movies tingler. Finn knows how to pleasurably wind us up.” (USA Today)
“Superior.” (New Yorker)
“As the plot seizes us, the prose caresses us. . . [Finn] has not only captured, sympathetically, the interior life of a depressed person, but also written a riveting thriller that will keep you guessing to the very last sentence.” (Washington Post)
“The Woman in the Window is one of those rare books that really is unputdownable. The writing is smooth and often remarkable. The way Finn plays off this totally original story against a background of film noir is both delightful and chilling.” (Stephen King)
“Astounding. Thrilling. Lovely and amazing....Finn has created a noir for the new millennium, packed with mesmerizing characters, stunning twists, beautiful writing and a narrator with whom I’d love to split a bottle of pinot. Maybe two bottles—I’ve got a lot of questions for her.” (#1 New York Times bestselling author Gillian Flynn)
“Twisted to the power of max. Hitchcockian suspense with a 21st century twist.” (Bestselling author Val McDermid)
“Compelling, wrenching, and gasp-for-breath exciting―I was blown away.” (#1 New York Times bestselling author Joe Hill)
“A dark, twisty confection with an irresistible film noir premise. Hitchcock would have snapped up the rights in a heartbeat.” (New York Times bestselling author Ruth Ware)
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Once I started reading The Woman in the Window, I realized quickly that it is definitely not a carbon copy of Rear Window. The influence of classic Hitchcock films is undeniable, but The Woman in the Window is definitely a powerful force of its own. The book is told from the perspective of Dr. Anna Fox, a child psychologist whose agoraphobia has confined her to her own home for ten months. She spends her days playing online chess, counseling others with agoraphobia in an online community, drinking much more wine than she should, and watching her neighbors through the window with the zoom lens on her camera. When a new family moves in to a neighboring house, she witnesses something horrible that leaves her determined to convince everyone else that what she saw was real, in spite of her heavy dosages of medication and the several bottles of wine she drank that day that lead them to believe she imagined the entire thing.
The Woman in the Window is unlike most other thrillers I have read. In fact, classifying this book as simply a thriller does a serious injustice to A.J. Finn's writing. Finn has crafted a magnificent novel with a literary fiction feel that also leaves readers anxious from start to finish. By telling the story from Anna's perspective, Finn has allowed readers to dive deeply into the complicated tangle of her mind and thoughts, and as she begins to question her own sanity, so does the reader. Her own story and the source of her agoraphobia unfold slowly through her conversations with her husband, from whom she is separated and has not seen during her period of confinement, and the details she reveals to a woman she meets in her agoraphobia community online.
In the beginning, Anna’s reliance on multiple bottles of wine each day, her irresponsible methods for taking her medication, and her disregard for personal hygiene made her difficult for me to reach. As her depression became more clearly defined, my attitude toward her turned to empathy, and I became deeply invested in her. I found myself desperately wanting to believe her and desperate for her to prove herself to those around her. The more invested I became, the more blindsided and shocked I felt by each twist in the story...and there were several.
The Woman in the Window is a perfect read for those who enjoy slow burning thrillers that focus on deep character development through compelling writing. As someone who enjoys classic films, I especially appreciated the suspense of the book that left me feeling terrified without the gore and sensational violence typical of modern works. Instead, The Woman in the Window got inside my head, made me question everything I thought I knew about what Anna saw, and held on so tightly that I couldn't put the book down until I finished.
The reason this book ended up being 3.5 stars for me is because it is simply too long. The first 40% or so, I was completely enraptured, couldn’t put the book down and invested on the development. Then things sllllloooooowwwwwed waaaaaayyyyyy dooowwwwwwnnnnn. There was a lot in there, but this book could have easily been 100 pages less and still told the same story. The ending picked up and some of the twists definitely got me.
I can see why this book has generated such buzz and is already being talked about as the “It” read for 2018. But for me, it dragged too much for it to be a stand out thriller. This is the type of story that doesn’t need filler pages, you can just tell it from start to finish and give me the 1 – 2 punch.
I would recommend this book, as I mentioned, it is sure to be highly buzzed about, so I recommend you give it a go and see what you think. Maybe it is just me who thought it was too long