Sunday, January 18, 2015

Book Review: "The Girl on the Train" by Paula Hawkins

"The Girl on the Train" by Paula Hawkins
First published in 2015
323 pages
My rating: 4.5 out of 5
Image from Goodreads

If Gillian Flynn were British, this is the book she'd write. The debut thriller by Paula Hawkins features deeply flawed characters, crazy plot twists to keep you guessing, and an ending that'll make you say, "WTF?!"

This whodunit features triple narratives. Rachel comes to us in present day and is sucked into the disappearance of a girl whose trackside house she passes every day on her morning train commute to London. Megan is the missing girl, and her tale begins one year before she vanishes. Anna is connected to both Rachel and Megan. The three stories converge at the same time, revealing a turn of events you probably won't see coming -- and that will remind you that we have no idea what secrets other people are hiding and what goes on behind the closed doors of our neighbors' houses.

I liked the book's format -- the chapters are short and broken up not only by days but into "morning" and "evening," making this novel highly readable. It's so nice when books have ample stopping points (though you won't want to stop reading this one!). The writing is awesome and the story is a total page-turner that'll have you on the edge of your seat.

That said, something kept me from giving "The Girl on the Train" a full 5 stars. Maybe it's because the twisted plot and multiple perspectives were so reminiscent of "Gone Girl," and "Gone Girl" was just a little bit better, a little bit fresher, a little bit more innovative, and a little bit more fucked up. Still, this was a fantastic, unputdownable, highly suspenseful mystery and I fully recommend it!

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