Title: The Girl On The Train by Paula Hawkins
Genre: Psychological Thriller
Rating: 5/5 stars
EVERY DAY THE SAME
Rachel takes the same commuter train every morning and night. Every day she rattles down the track, flashes past a stretch of cozy suburban homes, and stops at the signal that allows her to daily watch the same couple breakfasting on their deck. She’s even started to feel like she knows them. Jess and Jason, she calls them. Their life—as she sees it—is perfect. Not unlike the life she recently lost.
And then she sees something shocking. It’s only a minute until the train moves on, but it’s enough. Now everything’s changed. Unable to keep it to herself, Rachel goes to the police. But is she really as unreliable as they say? Soon she is deeply entangled not only in the investigation but in the lives of everyone involved. Has she done more harm than good?
The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins is a book I have continuously heard amazing things about and it has been on my TBR for a while, I just never went the extra mile and bought it. But I FINALLY did and it is safe to say I absolutely loved my reading experience from it as I couldn’t put it down and ended up reading it in one night. The Girl on the Train is most definitely a compelling and vivid story that will keep you engaged throughout, from secrets to violence and affairs there isn’t much this book doesn’t hold.
The Girl on the Train has a very intense and fast paced plot, there is a lot going on within the main plot but also the book is very thought-provoking therefore you think of each character, their behaviour and your constantly analyzing them. This is one of the things that really made me love my reading experience because the book transforms you to become more than just a reader. You become part of the story.
I have previously read The Cuckoo’s Calling by Robert Galbraith (J.K Rowling) which was my first Crime Novel experience and that book was similar to The Girl on the Train in the sense that it is also a ‘whodunit’ type of novel. However the crime has already happened, whereas within The Girl on the Train you are present before, during and after so you watch this whole world unravel and you are truly integrated into the story.
I also really liked the whole element of Rachel, our main protagonist watching this family from the train as she makes her commute into the city. I myself commute nearly every weekday for university and the whole descriptive nature even of the mundane noises is really captivating for me because I felt like I could really picture myself on that train. The types of people she see’s each day can be transferred onto the people I see each day on my daily commute.
Overall the Plot was extremely engaging and there are a bunch of twists and turns along the way, the ending was particularly shocking. Whilst I did have a few theories myself I never expected it to really end the way it did and at first the ending did seem a little abrupt to me, I had to take a moment and remember I wasn’t reading a ‘Happily Ever After’ Love story or YA fantasy. I was reading a Psychological Thriller so once the event is revealed that’s it, we don’t delve deeper into the characters lives and see what’s next for them.
When I first started The Girl on the Train I felt a little conflicted about the characters because there was so much going on and I found I hated a bunch of them such as Tom and Anna but again I had to remember that this is a psychological thriller and that’s ok. I’m not reading a romance or anything, I’m reading basically a ‘whodunit’ type of novel and I can hate any characters if I want to because I suspect them or don’t like what they represent.
I basically suspected every character in this and more than once I remember thinking ‘bet it was you’ and it turned out to be wrong but once I got to the final few chapters I managed to dwindle it down to two characters I really suspected.
One character I really liked was Rachel because she is not a ‘perfect’ character and she goes on a true character development and journey in this book. Rachel also embodies a ‘unreliable narrator’ persona because she is an alcoholic, she herself is constantly questioning if she really experienced an event a certain way therefore we also question if she is correct.
The book alternatives Point of View between Rachel, ‘Jess’ and Anna, the dates are also given at the top of each section therefore therr is some jumping between the events. I really liked this because we were able to experience different view points to the story and it also intensified the suspecion on other characters. It’s almost as if it is a technique to throw you off the trail for a little bit longer…
The Girl on The Train’s setting is London, England. I usually like to read books set outside of the United Kingdom such as in America because I find that I can fully immerse myself however as I’m introducing myself into this genre I am finding I like psychological or crime books set in the UK because I can draw comparisons or picture the town or city as it truly is. However I have to mention that the film which is due to be released here in the UK on October 7th is infact set in America and the only British Character (I believe) is Emily Blunt, whilst i’m looking forward to the film I kind of feel deflated that is has been americanised because I really liked the London element of the story.
Overall The Girl on the Train is highly engaging and a true Psychological Thriller, the book offers not only a deep background into the characters but also the main plot centred around the violence and secrets. As mentioned I really enjoyed the setting and the unreliablity of Rachel herself. This is definitely one to keep you on your toes and has been described as being perfect for ‘Gone Girl’ fans, whilst I haven’t read the book for that one I have watched the film and based on that I would say definitely give this one a go. You won’t regret it.
- Alternative POV – ‘Jess’, Anna and Rachel
- Intense, Shocking and Vivid Story-line
- Engages you as more than a reader – Continuous Questions Arise
- Violence, Secrets and Affairs – A Book to Definitely keep you on your toes
- London Setting
- Unrealiable Narrators and Characters – Rachel our main protagonist is an alcoholic.
Where to buy me?
Hey Guys I am Back! I’m sorry it has been so long but my laptop has finally been fixed and returned to me so I can get back into the goove of blogging again. I hope you enjoyed my review for Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins. If you have read it yourself be sure to let me know your thoughts in the comments or if you have any recommendations for me also let me know of these!