I love psychological mystery/thrillers so I was excited to read this debut novel by A. J. Finn. If you are familiar with the Hitchcock movie, Rear Window, you will see some similarities to it in this book.
Anna Fox is a mess. She lives alone in her New York City home. We learn that she is a child psychologist but has such a bad case of agoraphobia that she hasn’t left her home in months. She is also an alcoholic who takes pills for her anxiety while drinking wine. She often spies on her neighbors with her Nikon camera. Anna loves classic noir movies and watches them to fill up her time. Although Anna can’t seem to help herself, she helps other people suffering with agoraphobia in an online chat group.
Anna has suffered a trauma that is revealed later in the book and she is separated from her husband and child, although she talks to them daily. When the Russell family moves in across the street, they seem like the perfect family to Anna with a husband, wife and teenage son. When Mrs. Russell and her son come over to give Anna a gift, she gets drunk with Mrs. Russell and forms a bond with her. One day while spying on them, she sees a crime being committed in their house across the street. Or does she? Should she call the police who probably won’t believe her because she has been drinking? The police don’t believe her and the Russell’s deny that any crime has been committed but the Mrs. Russell who talks to the police isn’t the same Mrs. Russell Anna met.
This is an atmospheric story with twists and turns. I am a fan of noir movies so I loved that part of the story of Anna watching noir movies and it added to the tension in the book. Anna’s three story house also plays a big part in the story because it is Anna’s whole world now that she can’t leave it. Although she is alone in the house, she rents out the basement to a young man who helps her with things around the house but can he be trusted after Anna finds out some things about him?
I did figure out a few things but didn’t figure out how they would all come together at the end of the book. I listened to it on audio and at first wasn’t sure how I liked the reader but ended up liking the narration by Ann Marie Lee.
If you like psychological thrillers with twists, an unreliable narrator and noir overtones, you should give The Woman in the Window a try. It was also an Amazon Best Book of January 2018.