© 2024 KMUW
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Jaclyn Goldis on 'The Main Character'

Jaclyn Goldis is the author of "The Main Character."
Shai Hansav
Jaclyn Goldis is the author of "The Main Character."

When writing her novel The Main Character, Jaclyn Goldis was inspired in part by her own father’s experience growing up as a Jew in the Soviet Union. But she was also inspired by Agatha Christie’s Murder on the Orient Express. So she reimagined a whodunnit murder mystery aboard the same train.

In Goldis’s story, an eccentric mystery writer selects a woman named Rory to serve as the main character of her upcoming novel. The writer gifts the “main character” with a lavish trip throughout Italy. Things get strange when Rory unexpectedly encounters her closest family members and friends on the same train, and is faced unanswered questions that could lead to a deadly end.

I recently spoke with Jaclyn Goldis about her love of mysteries, how she plots her stories, and how she transitioned into writing after a career in economics and law. Here’s our conversation.


The Main Character was published by Atria/Emily Bestler Books.

Marginalia was produced at KMUW Wichita and is part of the NPR Podcast Network.

  • Mark Statzer and Torin Andersen - engineers
  • Haley Crowson - editor
  • Haley Crowson & Katie Lanning - producers
  • Karlee Cooper - marketing coordinator
  • Beth Golay - host
Stay Connected
Beth Golay is KMUW's Director of Marketing and Digital Content. She is the host of the KMUW podcast Marginalia and co-host with Suzanne Perez of the Books & Whatnot podcast. You can find her on Wichita Transit in conversation with other riders for En Route, a monthly segment on KMUW's weekly news program The Range.