“The Girl On the Train”

by

9781594633669_p0_v3_s114x166This first-time work of fiction by English journalist Paula Hawkins has been on “The New York Times” best seller list for many weeks, usually in the number one position.  Billed as a psychological thriller, the plot of  “The Girl On the Train” focuses on the lives of three London women.

Rachel is a recently-divorced woman who travels from her home in a London suburb to her job in London.  The train travels behind the house she once lived in with her husband Tom.  As she looks out the window each day, she imagines what Tom and his new wife Anna are doing.  She also creates a history for neighbors Scott and Megan, people she has never met, who live in a house several doors from Tom and Anna.

Rachel’s life is complicated by the fact that she is a borderline alcoholic.  Alcohol induced behavior has caused her to lose her job, lose her husband, and lose her memory about recent events.

The plot of “The Girl On the Train” is well crafted.  Unfortunately, it took me a very long time to get into the book.  The first one-hundred pages, the book is a little over 300 pages, took me a very long time to read.  I just wasn’t interested in the character of Rachel because of her irrational behavior.  But as the mystery aspect of the plot develops, my interest was sparked.

Told in alternating chapters, we learn how the lives of the three women–Anna, Rachel, and Megan–intersect.  If a reader has the patience to stick with the story, the ending packs a punch.

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