Reviews of The Other Passenger by Louise Candlish

The Other Passenger

by Louise Candlish

The Other Passenger by Louise  Candlish X
The Other Passenger by Louise  Candlish
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  • Published:
    Jul 2021, 400 pages

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Book Reviewed by:
Jane McCormack
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Book Summary

The "queen of the sucker-punch twist" (Ruth Ware, #1 New York Times bestselling author) and author of Our House weaves an unputdownable page-turner about a commuter who becomes a suspect in his friend's mysterious disappearance.

It all happens so quickly. One day you're living the dream, commuting to work by ferry with your charismatic neighbor Kit in the seat beside you. The next, Kit hasn't turned up for the boat and his wife, Melia, has reported him missing.

When you get off at your stop, the police are waiting. Another passenger saw you and Kit arguing on the boat home the night before and the police say that you had a reason to want him dead. You protest. You and Kit are friends—ask Melia, she'll vouch for you. And who exactly is this other passenger pointing the finger? What do they know about your lives?

No, whatever danger followed you home last night, you are innocent, totally innocent.

Chapter 1
December 27, 2019

Like all commuter horror stories, mine begins in the mean light of early morning—or, at least, officially it does.

Kit isn't there when I get to St Mary's Pier for the 7:20 river bus to Waterloo, but that's not unusual; he's had his fair share of self-inflicted sick days this festive season. An early morning sailing calls for a strong stomach at the best of times, but for the mortally hungover it's literally water torture (trust me, I know). In any case, he always arrives after me. Though we live just five minutes apart and he passes right by Prospect Square to get to the pier, we gave up walking down together after the first week, when his spectacularly poor timekeeping—and my neurotic punctuality—became apparent.

No, Kit prefers to stroll on just before they close the gangway, raising his hand in greeting, confident I've secured our preferred seats, the portside set of four by the bar. At St Mary's, boarding is at ...

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Reviews

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Jamie's first-person narrative adopts a confessional air as he whispers the backstory of the four characters in the reader's ear in between police interrogations. Although he is a significantly flawed character, and potentially an unreliable narrator, you may find yourself invested in his fate. Candlish uses the timeless theme of envy to spur the characters forward. Whether it be yearning for youth or an insatiable desire for wealth, the "temptation to compare up," as the author puts it in the preface of the work, will speak to most. And as with many narrative instances of envy as a driving force, at least some of the characters experience a comeuppance...continued

Full Review Members Only (540 words).

(Reviewed by Jane McCormack).

Media Reviews

Minneapolis Star Tribune
Candlish's story is a stiletto take on desire and ambition and the power of possession, and one of the most entertaining and seductive thrillers coming this summer.

Crimereads
Candlish brings a Hitchcockian sense of the uncanny to her latest thriller, which features two friendly neighbors, co-commuters on the local ferry. When one of them goes missing, the other finds himself under accusation. Their friendship is real, but our protagonist is forced to question everything he thought he knew about her relationships and the community around him.

Library Journal (starred review)
This book stands apart for its expert pacing and plotting, and for its exploration of the complexity of financial disparities in relationships, friendships between generations, and the London housing crisis. Sure to please readers looking for thrillers in the vein of Lisa Jewell and Aimee Molloy; a single-sitting page-turner with character and thematic depth.

Publishers Weekly (starred review)
[An] ingenious psychological thriller...Dalliances form, alliances abound, and deception is rampant. Candlish's clever commuter horror offers enough stupefying chills to reward old fans and invite new ones.

Author Blurb A.J. Finn
Psychological suspense at its most elegant and sinister.

Author Blurb Lisa Jewell
Just brilliant; gripping from the first page with an incredible first-person narrative and a sense of place that pulls you through the pages fast enough to make your head spin. Louise Candlish just gets better and better. I love her.

Reader Reviews

Gerrie

Suspenseful Thriller
Reading Candlish’s The Other Passenger is comparable to watching a long far off train making its way to a collapsed trestle over a 1,000 ft drop, you know disaster is coming but you are powerless to stop it. There are twists within twists and an ...   Read More
Elizabeth@Silver'sReviews

Not a favorite
Friends living together, friends meeting on commutes to work, marital affairs, and now a missing friend and Jaime is the last one to see Kit alive. We follow Jaime and Clare, Kit and Melia, and Gretchen, and Steve as we hear background information...   Read More

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Beyond the Book

Subterranean London

London Underground sign at Westminster Station Louise Candlish's narrator in The Other Passenger, Jamie Buckby, suffers from tunnel phobia. It is this affliction that causes him to quit his professional occupation and work at a coffee shop. Jamie experiences London's subway system, known as the Tube, as a "place with no escape routes" where "bodies were crammed into every last column of vertical space" with "doors that locked like a crocodile's jaws." He ultimately suffers a severe panic attack in the Tube, and his fellow passengers demonize him for it. Jamie is not alone in either his phobia or his frustration with public transportation. However, while some passengers fear the overcrowded carriages and congested platforms, others marvel at London's vast and intricate subterranean ...

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