The Woman in the Window: The most exciting debut thriller of the year
The book was very well liked by the majority of the readers in our group. Various comments were – liked a lot, gripping, read rapidly, enjoyed, a good read. The twists and turns were completely unexpected by some and members liked that it was very modern with the computer hacking etc. The use of short phrases/sentences when the main character was telling the story was appreciated as that made you read quickly and it developed a sense of urgency. One person was not thrilled and thought it 100 pages too long.
Some people thought that the continual mention of old films was overdone. The similarity to the film “Rear Window” wasn’t missed and members thought it was a good modern version of this.
We thought that 4* was reasonable.
Stephen King is correct in that it is “Unputdownable.” The short chapters, the lucid writing style and the ongoing tension helps the reader move along at a pace of knots.
I really enjoyed the twists and the misdirections until maybe the final one, which felt a little sensational.
People critiqued the pace of the first half of the book but I thought it was essential for character and world building and raced through it.
Some of the descriptive language was clunky at points.
All in all though, I’d recommend this as a good Saturday afternoon whodunnit.
I expected to enjoy this more given the reviews. It was certainly very well written, jammed full of rich content ( films, psychology,therapy) and you were kept guessing all the way through but i found it hard going for the first half of the book - perhaps it was because Anna was such a sad, broken and consequently self destructive character that i didn't enjoy reading about her life so it was more of a chore to keep reading rather than feeling the eventual cliffhanger suspense.
A very cleverly constructed book but not something i could say i enjoyed.
Anna Fox is a child psychiatrist who lives alone and has become reclusive as a result of agora phobia. She spends her days spying on the neighbours, watching old movies and drinking copious amounts of wine. Her only real contacts with the outside world are weekly sessions at her home with both her physical therapist and her counsellor and frequent conversations with her estranged husband and daughter. When Anna witnesses a violent episode at the house opposite she reports it to the police. Her story is denied by the neighbours and the police are skeptical about her ability as a reliable witness because of her mental state, her alcohol consumption and her (somewhat erratic) medication intake. And there we have the start of a psychological suspense thriller.
I thoroughly enjoyed this book, in fact I was riveted and couldn’t put it down. There is tension, intrigue and a crime that needs to be solved – what more could you ask for in a novel? The characters are plausible and well-developed and I felt as though I knew Anna particularly well by the end. I even learnt something. Agoraphobia is not something I knew much about at all and I came to realise what a debilitating disorder it can be.
The only downside for me was that the ending was a little over-dramatic and could possibly have been toned down a bit. However, the book was so compelling that I could forgive it almost anything.
It looks as though this is AJ Finn’s first novel and a very good one it is too. I will certainly be looking out for more.
I really enjoyed this psychological thriller, its short chapters made it a quick read , and towards the end I couldn't put it down. The twists and turns throughout and the outcome were really cleverly done. I also enjoyed the subtleties of the dialogue of some of the black and white films which were playing in the background, they were a nice touch. The fact that Anna was basically housebound made me think initially that the suspense would be limited but the various people she came into contact with either by them coming to her house in person or online kept it a gripping read.
A tightly written thriller that twists and turns to the final page. I enjoyed this book and found it entirely believable. In the setting it echoes so much of what happens in our world today and has prompted my awareness of isolation in the centre of lives that is largely unseen.
Woman watching other people’s lives through a window, something happens, drink and mental health issues...sound familiar? This story had too many parallels with Girl on the Train for me to enjoy it thoroughly. That said, I did enjoy the punchy style of writing, so would probably look for other books by the author, if they weren’t too similar a plot to this one.
I loved this book, written in a similar style as 'girl on the train' It had me totally gripped and I felt my 'jaw drop' on several occasions! The main character is a woman suffering from agoraphobia, and all the issues that she faces. There is enough suspense to keep you turning the pages. I can definitely see a film in the making!
I got totally drawn into this book. It certainly played with the emotions. My reaction to the main character shifted throughout. I was in turn intrigued, annoyed, sympathetic, scared for her and beyond frightened as the tale reached its climax. I might be a bit naive, but I never suspected the outcome.
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Despite this being a book of intrigue, it did not grip me and keep me spellbound. I felt the language it was written in did not flow - short sharp sentences are not a style I enjoy to read.
These comments may be because I do not usually read thrillers so the subject matter was not to my taste.
I loved this book from the start. With very short, punchy chapters, it was so fast pace and made me want to continue and I read it so quickly compared to my usual pace!
Dr Anna Fox is a phycologist who suffers from agoraphobia as a result of an accident (no spoilers here!). Due to her condition, she’s stuck in her house, with only the views of her neighbouring buildings in New York as company. Well, she does have her online friends and tenant, but she doesn’t see him so often.
When a new family moves in across the park, everything changes. She befriends the son (Ethan) of the family and meets Ethan’s mother. However, when she ‘sees’ something horrific through the windows, her agoraphobia is put to the test and then later what she saw questioned. Did she see it, or was it the drugs she’s on, tiredness, or excess alcohol? And if she did see it, would she be believed?
In short, a very powerful book, the only thing I didn’t like was the frequent references to the black and white films Anna loves used analogies. I agree that it was clever, but I honestly didn’t think it was needed in my opinion.
I loved this book from the very first chapter. It was fast paced and exciting and totally kept me hooked until the last page. I’d recommend this book to anyone who loves a good thriller with plot twists and turns. The underlying issues of agoraphobia, family dynamics and other health related problems were well written and honest. In short I “Loved it”
I was expecting good things from this novel after reading the first few intriguing chapters. However I found the ending quite disappointing and I don’t think I would recommend this thriller to friends. I thought the use of old films as parallels to Anna’s experiences clever but on the whole a pretty mundane reading experience.
A plot driven thriller with lots of twists and turns to keep the reader guessing. I've had a sneaky preview ahead of giving it out to the rest of the group at the meeting next week and think it'll be a good one for discussion. Don't want to give any spoilers but lots of issues are raised about mental health, PTSD, relationships and more. Can't wait until everyone else has read it too....