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Book Review - The Girl on the Train

Welcome back to book club weekends.

Today I share with you my book review on Paula Hawkins debut psychological thriller ‘The girl on the Train”.

The Synopsis

Rachel takes the same train every morning to work, and every morning the train stops at a signal for a few minutes allowing Rachel to watch the same couple breakfasting on their deck. She makes up stories in her mind of what the life of this couple is, so she names them “Jess and Jason”. Through her imagination, Jess & Jason live the perfect life, in contrast to her own.

One day as the train rattles to a stop at the same signal light, Rachel sees something shocking. The train only stops for a minute, but it is enough to turn her life upside down. Rachel later offers what she knows to the police and becomes inextricably entwined in what happens next. The question is has her involvement done more harm then good?

The Review

The story is told through the view point of the characters. Each one of them is telling their side of the story through their point of view and slowly building the story line.

The story unwinds little by little and the book is really hard to put down. I guessed the culprit pretty early on in the book, but the story became more interesting as I was obsessed with understanding the why not the who.

We follow Rachel and her ideal image of “Jess and Jason” her NEED to belong to a life that she only recently lost. That she looses her self, her self worth and dignity to again be part of the ‘perfect’ life she perceived Jess had with Jason.

Having said all this I actually HATED every single Character. Every single one was obsessed with having it all, but in their own way they all find out that “grass isn't always greener on the other side”.

The disappointing thing about this book was the ending. I felt that the story was fast past and mysterious and then there was a quick uneventful and unfulfilling end.

I give this book a 4 out of 5.

BOOK CLUB discussion questions

  1. We all do it - actively watch life around us. Is Rachel’s obsession with Jess & Jason normal or more extreme then in the average person?

  2. What would you have done if you had seen what Rachel saw from her train window? What would you have done differently?

  3. The characters in the book tell them selves so many lies. How do you think Rachel is lying to her self? Do you tell your selfs lies to move on from hurtful situations? How do Rachel’s lies effect her and the people around her?

  4. Rachel’s ex husband and his new wife seem to have the perfect marriage. Is it more important to seem to have it all together or despite knowing your husbands infidelities? Would you forgive you husband if you felt he treated you right? Could you trust him if the beginning of your relationship was based on infidelity?

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