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‘Astounding. Thrilling. Amazing’ Gillian Flynn

One of those rare books that really is unputdownable’ Stephen King

‘Twisted to the power of max‘ Val McDermid

‘A dark, twisty confection’ Ruth Ware

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?

I’m absolutely delighted to welcome to my blog the author A J Finn author of the fantastic The Woman In The Window published on January 25th this year.

I reviewed the book Here

A.J. Finn is the pen name of Dan Mallory, vice president and executive editor at William Morrow. Dan has written for numerous publications, including the Los Angeles Times, the Washington Post, and the Times Literary Supplement. A native of New York, he lived in England for ten years before returning to New York City. He is an Oxford graduate, with a life-long love of the thriller noir genre, and a particular appreciation of Hitchcockian cinema.

Q&A with A J Finn

Who is your favourite character in the novel and why?

I’m partial to Detective Little, the kindly policeman, but I feel a special fondness for Anna Fox, our beleaguered heroine.

Although I hope The Woman in the Window will appeal to most people, it is at its dark heart a suspense novel. Often in genre fiction—not always, but often—the female characters, even those in starring roles, are helplessly, hopelessly dependent on men. They fret about men; they rely upon men; they orbit men. Issues of ‘empowerment’ aside, it isn’t very realistic—at least not in my experience. This, I think, is one of the reasons why Lisbeth Salander of The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo and Amy Dunne of Gone Girl made such an impact: Like many women, they’re more than a match for the men in their lives. I was keen to create a female lead who isn’t a damsel in distress. Anna Fox isn’t as crusading as Salander or as controlling as Amy Dunne, but over the course of the book, she pursues an inquiry, unravels a mystery, and confronts an antagonist, all without the help of a man.

Could you recommend any books that you’ve read recently?


Recent reads include a number of thrillers, among them Big Little Lies, by Liane Moriarty; The Chalk Man, by C. J. Tudor; and The Dry, by Jane Harper. I loved Francis Spufford’s historical novel Golden Hill, and I also enjoyed rereading The Count of Monte Cristo—although I’d forgotten how long it is! I’m currently making my way through Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine, by Gail Honeyman; a biography of E. M. Forster; and a collection of Arthur Conan Doyle’s Gothic short stories.

In general, what do you prefer, a book of a film? What is your favourite film?

My favorite film? That’s a tough one. It changes by the day. I’m particularly fond of The Third Man (1949), Les Diaboliques (1955), Rosemary’s Baby (1968), and Hitchcock’s Shadow of a Doubt (1943), as well as the 2003 maritime adventure Master and Commander. Interestingly, all of those movies except Shadow of a Doubt were based on books. But as much as I love films, my true passion is literature.


Do you have any writing rituals?

I wrote most of the book during weekends, although occasionally I tapped out a few words on weekday nights. When I write, I listen to electronic music, and I used to fuel myself with zero-calorie Cherry Coca-Cola until I kicked the habit. (The stuff is poison. Delicious poison.) From my desk I can look across the street, straight into the windows of the townhouse opposite my flat. New Yorkers never close their blinds or curtains, and this provided plenty of inspiration as I wrote The Woman in the Window.

To Purchase on Amazon UK

About The Author A J Finn in his own words

I’m A J Finn, author of THE WOMAN IN THE WINDOW — a debut novel that Stephen King describes as ‘remarkable’ and I call ‘the best I could do’. Guess which quote appears on the jacket.

THE WOMAN IN THE WINDOW has been sold in 40 territories around the world and is currently in development as a major film at Fox 2000, to be produced by Oscar winner Scott Rudin and written by Pulitzer winner Tracy Letts. I really want a cameo in the movie, in case anyone asks.

I spent a decade working in publishing in both New York and London, with a particular emphasis on thrillers and mysteries. Authors I published or helped acquire over the years include Robert Galbraith (aka J K Rowling), Agatha Christie, Patricia Cornwell, Carl Hiaasen, Nelson DeMille, and Karin Slaughter.

Now I write full-time, to the relief of my former colleagues. THE WOMAN IN THE WINDOW was inspired by a range of experiences: my lifelong love affair with suspense fiction, from the Sherlock Holmes stories I devoured as a kid to the work of Patricia Highsmith, whom I studied at the graduate level at Oxford; my passion for classic cinema, especially the films of Alfred Hitchcock; and my struggles with agoraphobia and depression. The result, I hope, is a psychological thriller in the vein of Gillian Flynn, Tana French, and Kate Atkinson, among others.

Stuff I love: reading; swimming; cooking; dogs; ice cream; travel. (Note that third semicolon. It’s crucial. I do not love cooking dogs.) Given the chance, I’d seriously consider cloning my late yellow Labrador, Tugboat (2001-2012) — one of history’s few truly perfect creations. I collect first-edition books and divide my time between New York and London.

Thank you for visiting and for such interesting replies.

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