From the publisher:
From master of suspense Lisa Unger comes a riveting thriller about a chance encounter that unravels a stunning web of lies.
Selena Murphy is commuting home on the train when she strikes up a conversation with a beautiful stranger in the next seat. The woman introduces herself as Martha and soon confesses that she’s been stuck in an affair with her boss. Selena, in turn, confesses that she suspects her husband is sleeping with the nanny. When the train arrives at Selena’s station, the two women part ways, presumably never to meet again.
Then the nanny disappears.
As Selena is pulled into the mystery of what happened, and as the fractures in her marriage grow deeper, she begins to wonder, who was Martha really? But she is hardly prepared for what she’ll discover…
There is always a reward in picking up any book written by Lisa Unger. This continues in her latest book “Confessions on the 7:45.”
I started the read with some idea that it would be a take-off on Patricia Highsmith’s 1950 novel “Strangers on a Train” and the ensuing movie based upon the book. Unger does take as a point of departure two women meeting on a commuter train and talking but then goes way beyond that. Her novel touches on many separate points and keeps her readers simply glued to the pages providing an ending not readily foreseen but definitely logical.
Selena Murphy is commuting home by train from her job in the city and sits down next to a beautiful stranger. Somehow during the trip, the two women find a commonality. The other lady, Martha, confesses that she has been sleeping with her boss while Selena tells her she witnessed her husband having sex with the girl engaged as the couple’s nanny for their two children.
Neither of the two women has reached any conclusion about the next steps to take. When Selena gets home she regrets the confession made to Martha and determines that she will not see her again. Moreover, Martha was not given anything that could help her get into contact with Selena again.
A few days later Selena’s nanny disappears and can’t be found. The police are contacted and much to everyone’s dismay begins to treat the disappearance as a possible homicide. What, if anything, was done to the nanny and other related facts about the lives of the two women are brought to the surface during the remainder of the novel.
Stating anything further than that Unger’s book is beyond just an all-nighter might give away details that reading this very satisfying novel will bring out. My recommendation – read it, but have coffee standing by.
10/2020 Paul Lane
CONFESSIONS ONTHE 7:45 by Lisa Unger. Park Row; Original Edition (October 6, 2020). ISBN: 978-0778310150. 368 pages.