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

The Woman in the Window

About The Book

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 Review

Oh. My. God. This is one of those books that when you finish it your head is spinning and you want to go back and re-read to see if you can find the hints dropped like breadcrumbs. The Woman in the Window by A.J. Finn is an absolutely outstanding psychological thriller that I was absolutely blown away by.

This is an excellently plotted novel, it is clever, taut, neat and there isn’t a word out of place. Anna spends her days watching her neighbours and keeping tabs on their activities, initially we think she is a nosy neighbour but it becomes apparent that something darker is afoot. Anna is an agoraphobic who no longer lives with her husband and daughter and her only connection to the outside world are her conversations with them, brief chats with her lodger and watching her neighbours going about their daily lives. Anna is a wonderful and cleverly constructed character, her agoraphobia has taken over her life and she has retreated in her shell, building a life within the walls of her house with a plethora of noir films to keep her company.When sh e sees something she isn’t supposed to see at the neighbour’s house across the park things start to unravel. She is trapped in her house, unable to help and when she does try she is cast as a deranged woman who is imagining things.

This is a slow burn of a book, it builds, gradually, layer upon layer – Anna’s life is created for us piece by piece and then, there is the slow descent into madness. She is the ultimate unreliable narrator whose obsession with classic noir films seem to be taking over her thoughts and her life. I loved these moments – the hints of noir and the film references that mirrored the action so wonderfully. I was there in the action, completely engrossed. I really felt for Anna, I was fully connected to her and her story and felt her frustrations and fear.

The Woman in the Window is utterly gripping, it is wonderfully written and tight with no flaws. When the twists come they are whiplash fast, sharp shocks that blind side and make you rethink everything you have come to believe. This is a psychological thriller with a difference, there is real humanity and empathy within its pages – it explores the role of family, the bonds we build and the terror of isolation and loneliness.

Mark my words, this is going to be one of the books of 2018 and everybody is going to be talking about it. Many thanks to Netgalley and the publishers HarperCollins UK for an advanced copy in return for an honest review, it was my pleasure. The Woman in the Window was published on the 25th January and can be bought here.

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