Jaza's World

Strangers on a Train

Strangers on a Train

By the same author that wrote The Talented Mr Ripley, Strangers on a Train is a wonderful novel about two strangers that meet accidentally and agree to commit murder for each other. The characterisation is possibly the best I've ever seen in any book, with the two 'strangers' being depicted with remarkably good detail. Guy Haines is a mild architect who doesn't really want to get involved, and Samuel Bruno is a rich, moody young college dropout who regularly gets himself drunk. The main selling point of this book is not the crime solving, since we know who committed the murders, and why, right from the start. What we don't know is if the truth will ever be discovered by the authorities, and what will happen if it is. We get a beautiful insight into the life of someone who didn't want to be a murderer, but who is now stuck with a death on his conscience, and who must somehow get on with his life without letting his past get in the way. The relationships between the characters is portrayed very well, as are each of the individual characters. A masterpiece not only of crime fiction, but also of the entire literary world.

Author: Patricia Highsmith

Year published: 1950

Filed in: Crime