Saturday, March 21, 2009

The Elevator

So how's this for an intriguing premise? A book set in an elevator. Three women trapped inside while a hurricane comes barreling into town. And all three of them have secrets that intersect with each other.

That's the premise of The Elevator by Angela Hunt. A hurricane has Tampa, Florida, square in its crosshairs, but in spite of that, three women converge on an office building. There's Gina, the wealthy housewife who just learned that her husband is having an affair. There's Michelle, a corporate headhunter who wants to tell her paramour that she wants marriage and a family. And there's Isabel, a Mexican maid with a dark and tortured past. All three happen to be in the same express elevator when the power goes out and they wind up trapped together, unaware that all three of them harbor secrets about the same man.

I have to admit, I was wondering what Hunt would do with this premise. It turned out that what she did was fairly realistic. While the women interacted with each other, there were also a lot of introspective moments, which makes sense to me. I mean, when you're trapped in a small space with two strangers, you're probably going to spend a lot of time thinking.

The style of the book worked well for this as well. Hunt wrote most of the story in an active tense. That helped lend immediacy to the on-going story but also helped make the numerous transitions into flashback easier to spot.

But overall, I think the book was about average. The story didn't grab me until about halfway through. And unfortunately, I was able to predict most of the story's major twists. So while it was a satisfying read, it wasn't a spectacular one. A good escapist tale, but little more than that.

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