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Extraños en un tren (7) by Patricia…
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Extraños en un tren (7) (original 1950; edition 1985)

by Patricia Highsmith

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2,075715,949 (3.68)213
In Patricia Highsmith's debut novel, we encounter Guy Haines and Charles Anthony Bruno, passengers on the same train. But while Guy is a successful architect in the midst of a divorce, Bruno turns out to be a sadistic psychopath who manipulates Guy into swapping murders with him. As Bruno carries out his twisted plan, Guy is trapped in Highsmith's perilous world-where, under the right circumstances, anybody is capable of murder. The inspiration for Alfred Hitchcock's classic 1951 film, Strangers on a Train launched Highsmith on a prolific career of noir fiction, and proved her mastery of depicting the unsettling forces that tremble beneath the surface of everyday contemporary life.… (more)
Member:Dubisu
Title:Extraños en un tren (7)
Authors:Patricia Highsmith
Info:Buenos Aires : Seix-Barral, 1985.
Collections:Your library
Rating:
Tags:Novel·la negra, literatura anglesa

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Strangers on a Train by Patricia Highsmith (1950)

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English (64)  Catalan (2)  Spanish (2)  Swedish (1)  Danish (1)  French (1)  All languages (71)
Showing 1-5 of 64 (next | show all)
A great idea wasted. Bruno is a brilliantly drawn, perverse character. But not so much Guy who strikes a false note from the start by going into Bruno's compartment on the train, and not leaving when he should have. Guy's wives, past and future are token characters, more like caricatures, rather surprising for a female writer. ( )
  scunliffe | Jul 17, 2021 |
This novel is suspenseful enough, unsettling and emotional, but it left me feeling unpleasant, trapped, and a little ill. One of the main characters kept making such stupid, stupid choices, and I suppose in part it was Highsmith's commentary on society's abdication of responsibility, but that doesn't make it pleasant. In all, a good story that I didn't enjoy reading. ( )
1 vote ImperfectCJ | Jul 5, 2021 |
Strangers on a Train by Patricia Highsmith is story that plays on the extremes of the good and evil that are in every person’s nature as well as being a psychological study on the power of suggestion. When Guy Haines meets Charles Bruno on a train travelling to Texas, they share stories about the one person in each man’s life they would like to be free of. In Guy’s case it is his soon-to-be ex-wife and for Charles it would be his father who he says tries to control him and his finances. Guy dismisses the plan that Charles comes up with for each man to murder the other’s nemesis and goes on his way. Charles meanwhile decides to go ahead with his side of the murders in the hope that Guy, once freed of his ex-wife will want to help him as well.

Thus begins an extreme case of cat and mouse, as first Charles drops hints that he is the one who committed the murder and then starts to pressure Guy into completing his half of the deal. When Guy comes to realize that Charles Bruno is a psychopath, he should have realized that this will never be over, that Bruno will always find a way to worm into his life. While Guy is both repulsed and attracted to Charles, Charles portrays an almost childlike hero-worship of Guy, wanting a part is all aspects of his life.

Strangers on a Train portrays this struggle of wills and also brings into the story a third party, a detective who appears to know exactly what questions to ask, and who to direct those question to. I found the book a little too long as the author included a lot of philosophical musings on the nature of good and evil. I also found Guy Haines rather stiff and boring, but, this author painted a very vivid picture of an alcoholic psychopath with Charles Bruno that kept me riveted to the pages. ( )
1 vote DeltaQueen50 | May 14, 2021 |

I wanted to like this more, but I couldn't. Two shifting narrators and I didn't like either one of them. Also the concept of a good person being psychologically coerced into an evil action by a sociopath has been done better. Specifically, I could not help but compare this novel unfavorably to James M. Cain's Double Indemnity which burns white hot and leaves the reader shaken and stunned. In Cain's brilliant noir masterpiece we are propelled, squirming and almost afraid to continue, through the anguished and paranoid thoughts of the protagonist and chilled by a villain as dark and psychopathic as they come. There is even a plot similarity in the investigator on the hunt but he is so much more effective in Cain's novel. Read Double Indemnity instead. There is no sense of urgency in Highsmith's story as the narration drifts back and forth between a gutless protagonist intent on wallowing in self doubt and guilt and a whiny villain who is drunk most of the time. I found myself waiting for an showdown that never really happened and an ending that was a total dud. ( )
1 vote ChrisMcCaffrey | Apr 6, 2021 |
This mid-20th century American crime novel was the basis for Hitchcock's famous film of the same name. The basic plot of the reciprocal murders of an unfaithful wife and a hated, overbearing father remains the same, though many of the details are different. Overall, I prefer the film, though that may at least partly because I have seen it many times, but never read the novel until now. The novel depicts well the increasing guilt that Guy Haines (a prominent architect as opposed to a tennis player in the film) feels at knowing the secret as to who murdered his estranged wife, and here, unlike in the film, he actually commits the reciprocal murder of Bruno's father. Bruno (which is here his surname not his given name) is a growing alcoholic - another degradation well described in the novel. There were parts of the story that dragged a bit for me, but overall I thought this was a good, psychological novel. I did miss the lack of incidents like the broken merry go round that kills Bruno in the film (here he suddenly commits suicide by jumping off a boat), but enjoyed it overall. ( )
1 vote john257hopper | Mar 27, 2021 |
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» Add other authors (58 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Highsmith, Patriciaprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Andrew, IanIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Ayala, JoanTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Docktor, IrvIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Eräpuro, AnnikaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Hitchcock, AlfredForewordsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Pinchot, BronsonNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Roberts, WilliamNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Für alle Virginias
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The train tore along with an angry, irregular rhythm. It was having to stop at smaller and more frequent stations, where it would wait impatiently for a moment, then attack the prarie again. But progress was imperceptible. The prarie only undulated like a vast, pink-tan blanket being casually shaken. The faster the train went, the more bouyant and taunting the undulations.

Guy took his eyes from the window and hitched himself back against the seat.
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In Patricia Highsmith's debut novel, we encounter Guy Haines and Charles Anthony Bruno, passengers on the same train. But while Guy is a successful architect in the midst of a divorce, Bruno turns out to be a sadistic psychopath who manipulates Guy into swapping murders with him. As Bruno carries out his twisted plan, Guy is trapped in Highsmith's perilous world-where, under the right circumstances, anybody is capable of murder. The inspiration for Alfred Hitchcock's classic 1951 film, Strangers on a Train launched Highsmith on a prolific career of noir fiction, and proved her mastery of depicting the unsettling forces that tremble beneath the surface of everyday contemporary life.

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Almost against his will, Guy Haines is trapped in a nightmare of shared guilt when he agrees to kill the father of the man who will kill Guy's wife.
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