Thursday, 26 March 2015

The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins

The Girl on the Train is one of the most talked about thrillers of recent months, with comparisons to Gillian Flynn’s Gone Girl and talks of a likely movie. So I felt it my duty to give Paula Hawkins' debut novel a try. And this wasn’t difficult because Hawkins knows how to draw the reader in with her mixture of unreliable narrators and a plot that slowly picks up pace and powers to a suspenseful conclusion.

Much of the story is from the point of view of Rachel, an alcoholic who would like her old husband and house back. But he’s moved on with a new wife and baby. So Rachel, whose drinking has ruined her marriage and lost her both job and income, keeps up a sham of travelling to work each day on the same commuter train, where she can see her old house from the window. Further along the street she also watches the house where Jess and Jason live, the couple she imagines have the perfect life.

The tension moves up a notch when Jess (real name: Megan) disappears soon after Rachel makes a shocking discovery. She tries to tell the police but they just see her as a pathetic fantacist and perhaps they’re right. And what is the cause of Rachel's lurking sense of dread?

Rachel isn’t the only character who isn’t who they seem and soon her anxiety becomes the reader’s anxiety and a number of unexpected plot twists make for thrilling reading. I imagine The Girl on the Train will make a terrific film full of ominous clackety-clack railway sound effects and looming shadows a la Hitchcock.

Posted by JAM

Catalogue link: The Girl on the Train

No comments:

Post a Comment