Thursday, August 11

Paula Hawkins - The Girl on the Train

“I have never understood how people can blithely disregard the damage they do by following their hearts.”   

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

EVERY DAY THE SAME
Rachel takes the same commuter train every morning and night. 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.

UNTIL TODAY

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 goes to the police. But is she really as unreliable as they say? Soon she is deeply entangled not only in the investigation but in the lives of everyone involved. Has she done more harm than good? 




Despite my initial reservations about picking this much-hyped book up, I decided to go ahead with it because I felt like I couldn't bear not knowing what all the hype was about, and am I glad I did! The Girl on the Train was a fast-paced, completely engrossing read, despite the beginning being kind of mind-numbingly boring. Don't get me wrong, I was 100% invested in the story throughout, but I just couldn't wait for the story to properly take off. Once it did- what a roller coaster ride the author took me on! Is this really her debut? Mind-blowing!

The portrayal of alcoholism and its consequences was done really great. Characters, though, I felt they could have been better crafted. Each of the main characters had a very monotonous voice that at times it felt like they were all one person and that's certainly not something I like. One other huge gripe I have is that I zeroed in on the main villain pretty early on. It was kind of obvious, for me at least, so it was just a matter of reading what was left of the book to confirm what I already suspected. 

Unconventional narrator/protagonist, missing woman, husband under suspicion, cheating, pregnancy, multiple POVs in tricky, intelligent writing and human nature in all its horrifying glory...comparisons to Gone Girl are, of course, inevitable. However, such comparisons would have undoubtedly resulted in more than a few disgruntled readers, as is obvious by number of people who have expressed their distaste over the comparison. This one didn't quite pack the punch that the previous did, and I'd definitely vouch for Gone Girl if it comes down to choosing one over the other. I still loved The Girl on the Train. Very much. And I cannot wait for the movie!


The story idea: 4/5
The realization of the story: 3/5
The characters: 3/5  
The cover: 4/5 
Enjoy factor: 4/5


      

11 comments:

  1. I picked it up last year because of the Gone Girl comparison and they were nothing alike so that pissed me off. I enjoyed the reading experience alright but halfway through my brain put the pieces together and when the revelation came I wasn't at all surprised so that was a bit of a bummer but it was a nice read nonetheless

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    1. People should just stop with the Gone Girl comparisons already! You and I both know it's near impossible to live upto it's magnificence, so I guess we shouldn't fall for that now from here on :D Despite it's problem, I did like this book quite a lot. I just WISH the revelation had been something bigger and better and badder.

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  2. I really want to pick this up! I've been into the mystery thrillers ever since I read Gone Girl, so I think this would be a cool read!

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    1. Oh, you should, Em! But perhaps cut down on the expectations based off on Gone Girl because that might spoil the story for you? Otherwise it was a fairly engaging read and I liked it!

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  3. Great review! Glad you liked this -- I figured it out pretty quickly so I didn't love this one but I am glad that more books in this genre are coming out, some of which are great!

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    1. I figured it all out pretty early on too, but I still liked the book enough :D And yesss- it's really great that there are more books coming out in this genre because I LOVE it!

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  4. I was also scared to pick this up before because of the hype. So glad I did because I really LOVED it! I've never read Gone Girl but with all the comparisons, I'm possibly aware as to what's going to happen on that one (but I'll still read it, haha). I cannot wait for the movie as well!! :D

    czai @ the Blacksheep Project

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    1. Oooh, if you loved this one, there's no wayyy you wouldn't like Gone Girl because it's honestly THE BEST. It's very, very different to this one despite the comparisons- please do pick it up!!!

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    2. oohh thanks. I have it on my shelf. So I'll definitely do that soon :D

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  5. I tried reading this but i couldn't get past the boring beginning. I know I was probably not in the right frame of mind, especially since I had recently read Gone Girl. I will probably pick this up again, maybe after I watch the movie. I love Emily Blunt so it is something I will definitely see. Great review!

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    1. Thanks, Karen! I agree the beginning was quite a bit difficult, but this was really quite an engaging read otherwise. You were probably too hungover by Gone Girl! :D

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