Sunday, 30 August 2015

The Girl on the Train - Paula Hawkins

The Girl on the Train is a psychological thriller set in London and its outskirts. It is bestseller book, so I thought I would give it a try and see what I thought myself.

It is narrated from three different perspectives, thought only one of them belongs to the protagonist - Rachel. She got divorced some years back because of a drinking problem that she developed, which she still has not overcome. Everyday, she takes the same train to go to London and back, even though she also lost her job a couple of months ago because of the same problem. While in the train, every time she observes the houses she passes by, though there's two in particular that she is interested in: her old house, where she used to live with Tom (her ex-husband) and where the latter still lives with her new wife; and one on the same street where a couple that seems perfect to Rachel lives. One day, the woman in the perfect couple disappears. 

 The writing in this book is good, though nothing out of the extraordinary. It is written in diary form. There is something worth mentioning: the chapters are not written in chronological order. You will notice that some of the diary entries occur in 2012 and others in 2013, which is something that really confused me at the beginning because I had not noticed it until a good 20 pages into the story. A tip: keep this in mind when you first start the book - it will save you some confusion! 

About the characters, you can notice a development in the protagonist throughout the story. She starts off as a complete drunk and she makes her way into sobriety in order to put her pieces together for a personal aim, she starts fighting for some self-control. About the rest of the characters, we could say none is deeply developed, though I'm not saying it's something bad - they ought to be like that because that is how Rachel sees them. I think their development is proportional to the extent to which the protagonists appreciates them or to how sober she was when she met them, which is something quite original. 

The story itself is good, though I would not say it's a "compulsive read" -which is how SJ Watson (author of Before I Go to Sleep) describes it. Hers is a compulsive read, and I will be uploading a review of this other book shortly. Nevertheless, The Girl on the Train is a very original story, quite enthralling. The plot twist is quite good, though I think the author could have done a bit better. Overall I enjoyed reading the book, and I gave it a 4 out of 5 starts on Goodreads

Happy reading! :)

wonderful literature.

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