Tuesday, August 28, 2012


Fright (Hard Case Crime #34)Fright by Cornell Woolrich
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Soon to be married Prescott Marshall goes on a bender and winds up sleeping with a young lady that isn't his fiancee. She starts squeezing him for money afterwards and on the morning of his wedding, Prescott snaps! He spends the rest of his life running, but you can't run from Fright!

Actually, the name of the book should have been Guilt, not Fright. The entire story is about Prescott's guilt leading to paranoia and eventually drunken insanity. There's defintely a Hitchcockian vibe to the whole affair. It also reminds me of Poe's A Telltale Heart to an extent. It's a pretty gripping yarn.

So why only a three? It's a pretty dated book. It takes place in 1917 or thereabouts and Majorie, Prescott's wife, is the stereotype submissive housewife that lives to please her man. She's a doormat for most of their marriage. Other than that, it was pretty good, if not a little predictable, although I didn't see the epilogue coming.

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