February 11, 2016

Review ~ The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins

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A debut psychological thriller that will forever change the way you look at other people’s lives.

Rachel takes the same commuter train every morning. 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 offers what she knows to the police, and becomes inextricably entwined in what happens next, as well as in the lives of everyone involved. Has she done more harm than good?

Compulsively readable, The Girl on the Train is an emotionally immersive, Hitchcockian thriller and an electrifying debut.

Purchase links:
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The Girl On The Train has garnered a lot of attention from readers last year and I must say as a connoisseur of psychological thrillers it deserves all the hype.

The author took an everyday thing we do (riding a train) threw in a person desperate for a release in her current reality so not unlike us everyday humans, and threw in a heinous crime that will curl around your head and live there.

The complexity of the characters, how they were interwoven in the story gives it life. Take Rachel, the alcoholic who has an obsession for her ex-husband who married the woman he cheated her with. Anna, who just wants to have the normalcy of a family, forever afraid of the shadow of her husband's ex-wife who is showing signs of getting tired of the shit Rachel is pulling and getting angrier and angrier about it. Tom, the husband in question, trying to be the peace maker but standing firm that he has moved on and Rachel should too. Then there's Rachel's "Jess and Jason" as she calls them. The couple who lives near her old house and now where her ex-husband lives with his family. She see's them be a couple and she makes it up in her head how perfect they are, how so alike they were when she and Tom were married. But in reality they have there own problems.

The story made me see that sometimes what under the surface is a much darker place. Sometimes what we see as happy is just one side of the story, that there could be an ugly side in an otherwise perfect life. How truth can be twisted by words, especially if it is from someone you trust. How not seeing past the exterior can be deadly.

This is a heart-pounding and mind fucking book that will in all sense satisfy every thrill craving you have.

I recommend reading this book while on a train to somewhere not for any special reason but because you will feel a little bit closer to what Rachel experience. Look out the window, see the cars, houses and people passing by and try to imagine, make up the story. It feels really satisfying that way.

~ Djan


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