The Girl on the Train; Paula Hawkins

The Girl On The Train book cover

The Girl on the Train; Paula Hawkins
| published March 7, 2015 |

Book review by Kristy Webster
Thursday Review contributor

The Girl on the Train is a fast paced, “Hitchcock-esque” psychological thriller that will keep you up all night reading to find out what happens next.

I don’t read a lot of mysteries, but this one caught my attention. The narration is split up between three women: Rachel, Megan and Anna, with Rachel being our main narrator and protagonist. Rachel is a divorcee in her early thirties whose life has imploded after her husband leaves her for another woman and quickly fathers a child with her. She has sunk into an abyss, both desperate and pitiable. She often drinks to the point of being black-out drunk and can’t remember what happens, or what she has done while intoxicated.

In an attempt to keep up appearances and to not further worry her landlord and flat mate, Rachel takes the same train to “work” every day even though she’s been fired from her job months ago due to drunkenness. Other than hitting the gin and tonics hard and daily, her other solace is in the life she has imagined and projected onto two strangers she can see from her usual seat on the train; a young, seemingly perfect couple she’s gone as far as naming Jess & Jason.

When she sees something out of the ordinary, the life she imagined for these strangers is shattered and so is her fantasy. What comes next is a series of page turning confrontations, near-misses and tense, suspenseful moments as both Rachel, and the reader try to piece together what happened the night a beautiful, vibrant woman goes missing.

If you loved Gone Girl, you won’t want to miss this sharp and entertaining mystery.

Related Thursday Review articles:

Battleborn; Claire Vaye Watkins; book review by Kristy Webster; Thursday Review; February 26, 2015.

If I Stay; Gayle Forman; book review by Kristy Webster; Thursday Review; July 14, 2014.