(This review contains spoilers)
Girl on the Train is a book I had heard so much about, it seemed like every Youtuber was just ‘casually’ adding it to their favourites videos or featuring it somehow (and no, this is not sponned, although hello Doubleday.. let’s talk) but I didn’t really have any idea what it was about. Even after reading the description, I had no idea what I was getting myself into. This book was so captivating I read it in one afternoon, I just couldn’t put it down.
The book is about a woman named Rachel who’s life is a bit in shambles, who rides the train into London every day for work. On her way, she sees a couple outside their house and begins to get quite attached to them, creating imagined backstories and lives for them. When the woman of the couple goes missing, Rachel finds herself caught up in the investigation, causing quite a bit of personal turmoil and grief for herself.
One of the things I loved about this book was how it was written in 3 different voices. I loved getting to see things from the different perspectives and try to piece together which way was correct, who was telling the truth. I also really enjoyed that Megan’s chapters were from the period before she went missing, so we were learning more about her as the other characters learned more about her through the investigation. I always love knowing things before other characters in a story!
I felt that Paula Hawkins did an extraordinary job of writing Rachel, I felt myself truly empathizing with her struggles, despite my not being a middle aged alcoholic divorcee. I truly felt myself getting desperate along with her, mentally pleading with the other characters to just believe her! She had good intentions! But in contrast to that I was really able to understand the other characters frustrations with her, particularly Cathy, when she throws up on the stairs. Despite my fondness for Rachel at that point, I found myself getting equally angry with her and totally understanding Cathy’s point of view. It’s a sign of a great author to me when a book truly takes you on a roller coaster of emotions.
And that ending… imagine me as the eye bulging emoji right now. I was a bit surprised when they discovered that Tom was the killer, but honestly not mouth gaping shocked. It was really more of an “Ohhhhh, that makes sense….” reaction initially. I was more concerned at that point about how Anna was reacting, I genuinely believed that she was gonna go crazy Stockholm Syndrome wife and just stand by and watch him murder his ex-wife. I was so proud when that wasn’t the case! The part of the story that truly made my jaw drop and my hand fly up to my mouth was when Rachel stabs him with the corkscrew… talk about a graphic mental picture! I can’t lie, the image of Anna twisting the corkscrew further into his neck made me feel a bit queasy.. and I have a pretty strong stomach!
All in all, this book was a winner for me, and I’d really recommend it if you’re into a kind of psychological thriller that will make you asess if what you’re reading really is the truth. Also a great book if you’re going on a long trip or need to pass the time somehow, because once you get stuck in you won’t want to put it down!
If you’ve read The Girl on the Train please share your thoughts with me! And as always if you have any recommendations for Drunk/Not Drunk Bookclub please let me know.