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Book Cover for: The Main Character, Jaclyn Goldis

The Main Character

Jaclyn Goldis

"Rollicking good fun." --The Wall Street Journal

A bestselling thriller author arranges a luxury train trip that is not what it appears to be in this electrifying modern homage to Agatha Christie that is filled with "rich, complex characters, taut prose, and twists and turns that keep those pages turning as the plot thickens" (Lisa Barr, New York Times bestselling author).

Reclusive author Ginevra Ex is famous for her unusual approach to crafting her bestselling thrillers: she hires real people and conducts intensive interviews, then fictionalizes them. Her latest main character, Rory, is thrilled when Ginevra presents her with an extravagant bonus--a lavish trip along Italy's Mediterranean coast on the famed, newly renovated Orient Express. But when Rory boards the train, she's stunned to discover that her brother, her best friend, and even her ex-fiancé are passengers, as well. All invited by Ginevra, all hiding secrets.

With each stop, from Cinque Terre to Rome to Positano, it becomes increasingly clear that Ginevra has masterminded the ultimate real life twisty plot with Rory as her main character. And as Ginevra's deceptions mount, and the lies and machinations of Rory's travel companions pile up, Rory begins to fear that her trip will culminate like one of Ginevra's books: with a murder or two. In the opulent compartments of the iconic train, Rory must untangle the shocking reasons why Ginevra wanted them all aboard--and to what deadly end.

The perfect read for fans of Ruth Ware, Lucy Foley, and Paula Hawkins, The Main Character mixes "the family drama of Knives Out with the locked room atmosphere of Murder on the Orient Express and the resulting cocktail is like an Aperol spritz on a hot summer's day: perfect" (Katy Hays, New York Times bestselling author).

Book Details

  • Publisher: Atria Books
  • Publish Date: Apr 15th, 2025
  • Pages: 336
  • Language: English
  • Dimensions: 8.25in - 5.31in - 0.64in - 0.43lb
  • EAN: 9781668013052
  • Categories: Thrillers - PsychologicalThrillers - SuspenseWomen

About the Author

Goldis, Jaclyn: - Jaclyn Goldis is a graduate of the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, and NYU School of Law. She practiced estate planning law at a large Chicago firm for seven years before leaving her job to travel the world and write novels. After culling her possessions into only what would fit in a backpack, she traveled for over a year until settling in Tel Aviv, where she can often be found writing from cafés near the beach. She is the author of The Chateau and The Main Character.

Praise for this book

"This riveting meta-murder-mystery poses an ingenious question: if we are all the main characters in our own stories, what if someone wanted to buy ours and make it their own? The most glamorous, opulent train in the world carries a fascinating set of passengers... and this entertaining thriller is wrapped in a heartfelt and psychologically astute study of love, success, and, most touchingly, family. A terrific book!"--Hank Phillippi Ryan, USA Today bestselling author of ONE WRONG WORD
"All aboard this glamorous thriller! A novel with more twists than a train winding through the Italian countryside, THE MAIN CHARACTER will surprise even the most eagle-eyed reader. Goldis has mixed the family drama of Knives Out with the locked room atmosphere of Murder on the Orient Express and the resulting cocktail is like an Aperol on a hot summer's day: perfect."--Katy Hays, New York Times bestselling author of THE CLOISTERS
"Suspenseful, stylish, and seductive--what you'd expect from Jaclyn Goldis--but with something deeper at its core: a love letter to family. THE MAIN CHARACTER is a runaway train that will leave you mesmerized. All aboard!"--Alex Finlay, author of IF SOMETHING HAPPENS TO ME
"Delicious tension and drama. Grab your suitcase and board the Orient Express for a trip you won't soon forget."-- "Kirkus Reviews"
"Jaclyn Goldis is a master of atmosphere as she whisks readers away on a luxury train ride along the Italian coast. . . THE MAIN CHARACTER is full steam ahead when it comes to betrayals and secrets, all wrapped up in a deliciously claustrophobic ride that you'll never forget."--Finley Turner, author of THE ENGAGEMENT PARTY
"[A]n entertaining modern-day mystery... with no shortage of shocking twists."-- "Booklist"
"Jaclyn Goldis slays it in her latest twisty propulsive thriller, THE MAIN CHARACTER. It has all the goods reminiscent of an Agatha Christie murder mystery - and yes, it even takes place on a luxury trip along the Italian coast on the Orient Express. There's murder, secrets, lies, love, loss, and deception - all the delicious elements of a modern whodunnit . . . . Goldis has a sharp instinct for tragedy, rich complex characters, taut prose, and twists and turns that keep those pages turning as the plot thickens. Readers will enjoy the ride, down to the very last stop."--Lisa Barr, New York Times bestselling author of WOMAN ON FIRE