The Girl On The Train book review
The girl on the train is about an unemployed Hard drinker Rachel in her mid-30s who travels on the same commuter train every day into London. She knows every detail about the journey even where it would stop for the signal and for how long it would wait there.
She pays attention to one particular house at the signal. In that house, she looks into the life of a couple, Meghan and Scott and fantasises about how perfect they are for each other and what she and her ex-husband could have been. She even gives her nicknames to that couple Jason and Jess, who live on the same street as her ex-husband Tom with his new wife Anna and their daughter.
She has a strange connection with Jess and Jason even though she is no one but a stranger to them. Rachael has not moved on from Tom and often terrorises Tom and Anna at their house. Her life is miserable and she spends most of her days drunk and blacking out. Gazing from the window in the train, she sees something shocking about Jess that no one else saw and everything changes since then.
The next day Jess goes missing, Meghan Hipwell goes missing while Rachel was at that locality but she remembers nothing.
She tries telling the cops what she has seen but her being an alcoholic was an unreliable source. She turns into an unwanted detective despite being asked to stay away. She puts herself in all danger to know the truth about the missing girl.
“There’s something comforting about the sight of strangers safe at home.”
― Paula Hawkins, The Girl on the Train.
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In 2015, The Girl On The Train by PAULA HAWKINS, a psychological thriller, emerged to be a global bestseller. The book splits into three points of view. It is the three narrations of Rachel, Meghan, and Anna whose lives are intertwined.
There is tension throughout the book between Anna and Rachel. In my view, the characterization is not so clear, as Rachel is our main narrator or character who is drunk most of the time and unreliable. Rachel’s character was unlikeable but pitying.
Meghan is completely a different person from Jess with a dark secret. Anna is insecure about how Rachel might spoil her family even though she wrecked Rachel’s chances of having it. All three women’s character cannot be loved. Paula Hawkins efficiently switched the characters’ point of view.
Apart from the narration switch, there is also a mix of the past or present. A constant switch between periods. The entire book is split into fragments but cleverly differentiated.
Initially, The book was slow in pace. It took a long time to get inside the book but very soon I found can find myself obsessed and it completely conquered my mind without leaving anything else to think about. The truth behind the missing girl kept compelling me to read further. Travelling on the train would never be the same after reading this book.
This was an okay read for me. I recommend The girl on the train for all Thriller lovers. The climax is well written and the narration is good.
In one word I would call The girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins a PUZZLE.
Best quote from The girl on the train :
“Hollowness: that I understand. I’m starting to believe that there isn’t anything you can do to fix it. That’s what I’ve taken from the therapy sessions: the holes in your life are permanent. You have to grow around them, like tree roots around concrete; you mold yourself through the gaps”
ABOUT THE AUTHOR –
PAULA HAWKINS worked as a journalist for fifteen years before turning her hand to fiction. She is the author of two #1 New York Times bestselling novels, Into The Water and The Girl on The Train. An international #1 bestseller, The Girl on the Train has sold almost 20 million copies worldwide and has been adapted into a major motion picture. Hawkins was born in Zimbabwe and now lives in London.
TITLE – The girl on the train.
AUTHOR – Paula Hawkins.
ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED – 2015.
PUBLISHER – Riverhead book, penguin group.
Genre – Thriller
Page count – 395 (USA)
Location – United Kingdom.