Book Review: The Girl On The Train by Paula Hawkins

Girl on the Train has more power because of the writing.

Since I had been reading so much non-fiction I thought I would read a fiction book next. I wanted something that was enticing, that would grab me from the start. It had to be a book that was start to finish an amazing read.

I bought a copy of The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins, a few months ago, at my local bookstore and it has been patiently awaiting in my fiction “to read” pile. I wanted to be able to sit and enjoy it in as little sittings as I could. The jacket promised “gripping” and “enthralling”.

One morning when my husband was home from work I decided he could mind our youngest and I would start this book. What I didn’t know was that the promises on the cover were an understatement. I couldn’t put the book down. We had errands to run when our son woke up. I let my hubby drive so I could keep reading. I shushed him a few times when he tried to give me his driving commentary about someone who was in another lane. (I do shush him a lot. He talks during movies and television shows and always NEEDS to talk to me when I am reading.)

In the book you start by being introduced to Rachel. There are a few mini paragraphs that set the tone of the book that come before this, but that would ruin the mystery.

Rachel is by far one of the most, for lack of better words, messed up characters that I have ever read. She is constantly drunk in public places. She’s unemployed, she lives with a friend that makes it very clear that Rachel has overstayed her welcome, and she stalks her ex-husband and his new wife.

Rachel is the “Girl on the Train”. To hide the fact that she has lost her job, from her roommate, she takes the same train every day at the same time to fake going to work. On her way she passes by a row of houses in a small town that she used to live in. There is one house in particular that she looks for. It was her house. Her ex-husband and his new wife now live there with their little girl. On a daily basis she gets reminded of her failure as a wife.

The other main character is Megan.

Megan is a married, late twenties woman who is unemployed and restless in her own skin. With her activities in her life not satisfying her, she seeks therapy to help her through some of the pain from years past, that might be the root cause of the restlessness. The therapy starts to help, but Megan still has an itch for something more.

Early on you start to see the two stories overlapping, even though the dates at the start of the chapters are a little off.

As the dates get ever so close to each other, a disappearance, a night not remembered, and lots unexplained wounds on one of the characters, start the mystery unfolding.

The only time that I put this book down was when I was getting ready for work. I almost walked out the door with it thinking if I had some time on my lunch break, then I could continue. But my husband reminded me that I might forget it at work. Very true. It had to stay home. After rushing home to kiss my family good night, I grabbed my book off the table and ran upstairs to my favorite reading spot.

I was able to finish the book in record time. It’s fantastic

This is one book that delivers on all the promises that the cover touts. I wanted to know what happened, but in the next moment I wanted more, another twist, another turn. I highly recommend this book to anyone who wants a great, fast paced read.

Paula Hawkins has been a journalist for fifteen years, it shows in the way she is able to spin a fantastic tale.

This is her first work of fiction. For her first novel it is an amazing book and I can’t wait to see what she comes up with next. At this time, the book has been optioned by Dreamworks to make it a movie. Even confirming from the author’s own Webpage that so far there is no word if the deal has gone through. I wouldn’t even know who to cast, the characters were their own people. I didn’t picture movie stars in there place like I normally do, when I feel that the book should be a movie.

With this book just coming out the past January, it will be some time before we see a second novel. I am waiting with baited breath, and a hope for another thriller of this caliber.