What Emma Read: The Girl On The Train by Paula Hawkins


So i’ve decided that i’m going to start a new thing hopefully, where I read books and post my reviews on them once i’m done. One of my new year resolutions this year was to read a book a month, which I honestly haven’t been doing. I go through phases where I’ll read no books for four months, then i’ll read 6 all at once. So hopefully I can remember to write about them!

The first book i’ll be looking at is The Girl on The Train by Paula Hawkins. It’s going to be pretty brief, as I didn’t want to include any spoilers!

First Impressions before reading the book:

I know nothing about it except that people have been comparing it to Gone Girl, which I’ve read and liked so fingers crossed. I actually have the kindle version so I don’t have the physical book to look at, but going by the images of the cover I found on Google, it seems pretty ominous; “you don’t know her, but she knows you.” I’m really excited to start it actually.

The Plot:

So basically it’s told mostly from the point of the main character Rachel, who has made up a persona and lives for two people who live in a house next to a railway on her commute to work every morning, but as the story unfolds you get to understand why she’s fascinated by their lives, and feels sucked into their world when she hears about one of them going missing. It becomes apparent that her old world and the people she’s observed every morning for years are linked, and as the story progresses, more and more of Rachel’s past becomes apparent and relevant to the story, adding to the suspense of what happened to Megan, the other main character of the book, who goes missing at the beginning.

The Characters:

The story is mostly told from Rachel’s point of view, in a diary format with dates, however is also told from the point of view of Megan, and also sometimes Rachel’s ex-husband’s new wife, Anna. The confusion began for me when I realised their timelines do not run at the same pace, Rachel’s progresses much faster than Megan’s, which is her experiences up to the point where she goes missing. Anna pops up at random, unexpected times often to moan about Rachel’s prevalence in her life, however I didn’t feel that her chapters added a lot to the story, but it was interesting to read Rachel’s actions from her point of view. Also in the novel are the characters of Scott; Megan’s husband, Tom; Rachel’s ex-husband and Anna’s husband and Cathy who is Rachel’s roommate. Cathy mostly exists to provide a stark comparison to Rachel’s lifestyle in my opinion. I found Scott and Tom interesting, and Rachel’s perception of the two added intrigue to the story.

Would I recommend it?

I don’t know why this was ever compared to Gone Girl, except maybe for the fact that in both stories a woman goes missing and her husband is suspected. Apart from that, they’re not particularly similar. I enjoyed this book, I was kept guessing throughout the entire novel, as more of people’s past was revealed, my opinion on characters changed constantly and by the end I honestly wasn’t sure what to think of the characters anymore. I usually like to guess ‘who did it’, but although I eventually did manage to guess, the circumstances were still a shock to me, which I appreciated. If you’re a fan of mystery and crime thrillers, I would definitely recommend this. And if you did enjoy Gone Girl, then I would say it’s worth a go, even if they aren’t particularly similar.

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