Review: The Passenger

The Passenger

The Passenger
Lisa Lutz
Simon & Schuster, Paperback, 9781451686647, November 2016, 336pp.

The Short of It:

Classified as a thriller but it really falls into the “what the heck is going on?” category because there is really no telling what these characters will do.

The Rest of It:

A man is dead. His wife Tanya flees the scene but it’s not clear exactly what has transpired. She heads across the country, stopping here and there to assume new identities as she attempts to run from those looking for her. It should be noted that there are plenty of people looking for her. The story is peppered with letters from a mysterious “Ryan” but it’s not clear how he fits into the story except that he knows Tanya as Jo. Why is she running? Who was she in the past?

Honestly, this story is all over the place. The beginning was a little disjointed but I gave it a little more time and eventually got into the story. Mostly, because I wanted to know why this woman needed to assume all these identities. If she truly wanted to stay hidden,  why was she so careless with details? Tanya/Debra/Jo is not good at assuming identities which makes for an amusing read but also makes her slightly annoying.

There were parts of this book that worked better than others but the most frustrating thing is that you really don’t find out the “whys” until the very end and then you are like, really? THAT’s the reason for all of this?

I think the story had potential but it seemed very orchestrated and overworked and perhaps a bit underdeveloped as far as plot. I’m not entirely sure the author knew where she was going with the story until she got to the end. Even the title didn’t make sense until the very end so the entire time I kept thinking, who is the passenger?

Plus, the main character’s personality is never truly revealed. Sometimes you’re led to believe there is goodness there. Other times she seems to not care what she does or how many laws she breaks. It’s hard to have empathy for her situation when A) you don’t know why she is running, and B) she seems to switch back and forth between having morals and not having any.

Would I read Lutz again? I probably would given that there were parts that I was really into but as far as this one goes, expect a quick read with a thin plot line.

Source: Borrowed
Disclosure: This post contains Indiebound affiliate links.

13 thoughts on “Review: The Passenger”

  1. I’ve seen Lisa Lutz in person and read a few books in her Spellman series. She’s very funny, as are the Spellman books. I’ve not been tempted to pick this one up because it’s such a change from what I’ve read by her in the past. Not sure if she just wanted to try a ‘thriller’ or what. I’m still not tempted. LOL

    1. So she does have other books? I had not seen her name before this one. Interesting how her other books are completely different. Thrillers seem to be very popular right now and they seem to get optioned a lot in Hollywood so perhaps she was trying to branch out.

    1. It didn’t bother me too much while reading it, not until the very end but still, there were moments were I thought she was on a good path.

  2. I really enjoyed this one actually. A lot. I liked the ambiguity and ethics involved in her flight. I’m sorry you didn’t enjoy it as much as I did!

    1. The ethics thing was interesting but forced. Or seemed to be. Mostly it was the just the “passenger” explanation that got to me.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s