Fiction, mystery-thriller

Review: The Girl on the Train by Paul Hawkins

It’s starting to get gloomy and humidly cold in this part of my country. Which I really couldn’t complain about because you could get cozy in this kind of weather. I just spend most of my day reading the first book I got for this month’s book haul, which I will be writing about when I get the chance.

Anyway, off to another review!

“There’s nothing so painful, so corrosive, as suspicion.”
Paula Hawkins, The Girl on the Train

Synopsis: Rachel is 32- year old alcoholic and her life is in shambles. Her only solace is taking the daily commuter train to and from London that allows her to see and observe the same couple  on their porch everyday. She even formulates a make up story about the “perfect couple”. All that changed, when she witnessed something shocking as she passed by the couple’s porch one day while riding the very same train. She then becomes entwined in series of events that involved murder and betrayal, forever changing her life.

What I think about it:

So, I’ve read some reviews on goodreads.com, comparing the book to Gillian Flynn’s Gone Girl. I haven’t read Gone Girl yet, but I’ve seen the film which I fondly call “Bitches Be Crazy” and if the film stayed true to the book, I’d say that the Girl on the Train is TOTALLY different from Gone Girl. Well, it has the same feel, wherein both stories, the reader begins to doubt the trustworthiness of the narrator. You actually don’t trust Rachel’s account of the events that transpired throughout the book because for one thing, she’s a pretty damaged human being. She doesn’t trust the people around her, the strangers around her and even herself. Which is kind of sad and despicable to think of at the same time. I find myself getting frustrated about her inability to just get shit done, but still cheering her on for her to become the person she knew could be.

Some of the characters are well though-out actually. They were written in such a way that their motives aren’t immediately revealed unless you read further on. It kept the whole mystery focused and also a good diversionary tactic for the author. Plot-wise, it was a bit too slow for me. It mainly focused on how damaged Rachel is and her struggle with her alcoholism that sometimes it forgets that its a mystery novel. But it did pick up in the second half of the book, where everything falls into place and you as a reader gets to put the pieces together as Rachel does eventually.

I suggest you delve into this book with an open mind devoid of the hype the book came with. It’s kind of reflective on how complex human nature is, that is, escapism. We usually desire things that some people have, and we become jealous,envious and even discontented if we don’t have it.

PS: The book is going to have a film, in which Emily Blunt <totally favorite actress from the Edge of Tomorrow film> will play the titular role of Rachel. Will definitely watch it. 🙂

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