Strangers on a Train

Pat’s first book, pub’d 1950 when she was 29 and obviously made famous by Hitchcock’s picking it up for a film (Raymond Chandler worked on the adaptation before he got fired and said the plot drove him “crazy”). The film streamlines and simplifies, as it always does. In the book, Guy breaks down and commits the murder of Bruno’s dad after months of torment and letters and harassment by Bruno after he offs Miriam. Bruno still can’t let well enough alone and insinuates himself into Guy and Anne’s life, eventually ending up on a boat with them that he drunkenly falls from, drowning. Guy is wracked with guilt, tracks down Miriam’s old boyfriend and confesses, of course to find Bruno’s private detective outside the door having heard it all. Most interesting to know about Pat’s alcoholism while reading this, as Bruno is constantly sloshed, saying things like the best way to experience the world is while drunk.