Strangers on a Train

Penguin Readers Level 4 [1,650 word level]
FCU Library: 813.54 / H638



This novel, written by Patricia Highsmith in 1950, is about two people who meet for the first time on a train. The one is a bad influence on the other and their meeting is followed by crime, lies, and guilt. In 1951, Alfred Hitchcock made this story into a movie, but he changed several details. Another movie based on the ideas of this novel is "Throw Momma from the Train" (1987) with Danny DeVito and Billy Crystal. It is interesting to read the novel and watch the movies to see what the directors borrowed from the novel and what they changed.

Slideshow: Strangers on a Train -- an Alfred Hitchcock film

Watch the slideshow of 'still shots' from Alfred Hitchcock's film, "Strangers on a Train." There is also a movie review and a movie trailer on the NY Times: Movies web site.

Strangers on a Train
Director: Alfred Hitchcock
Slideshow  |   Movie Review & Movie Trailer

Listen and Read Along: (MP3) 

Have I gotten you interested in the story yet? I hope so. Now you need to go to the library and borrow "Strangers on a Train". Once you've got the novel, I hope you come back here to listen as you read along. These MP3 files are sound recordings of "Stangers on a Train", Penguin Reader Level 4.

Something to Think About:

  1. If you were the judge in Guy's case and you knew all the facts, what kind of sentence would you give Guy Haines? Is he guilty or not guilty? What is he guilty of? How do you think he should be punished?
  2. What differences did you notice between the novel and the film (slideshow)? Which story did you like better?