Fiona Barton Writing Styles in The Widow

Fiona Barton
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Point of View

The distinct narrative styles employed in The Widow serve to develop suspense and to illuminate the tone of mystery in this psychological thriller.

The narrative points of view in The Widow shift rapidly to focus on a different character in nearly every chapter. The opening chapters are related in the present tense from the first-person perspective of Jean Taylor and describe Jean’s initial meeting with reporter Kate Waters. In subsequent chapters, the narrative focus shifts to follow Kate’s perspective, but these chapters, set on the same date, are related in the past tense from a third-person limited narrator.

Chapters that focus on the perspective of Detective Sparkes are likewise related in the past tense from a limited third-person narrator. It is notable that as Jean’s first-person narrative progresses throughout the novel, there are fluctuations between present-tense and past-tense narration. These transitions serve...

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This section contains 979 words
(approx. 3 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy The Widow Study Guide
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