The three most important parts of a book are: a well constructed plot, compelling characters, and a satisfying conclusion.

Thursday, February 5, 2015


Publisher:  Riverhead Hardcover
Release Date:  January 2015
Pages:  336
Genre:  Mystery
Book Description:  A debut psychological thriller that will forever change the way you look at other people's lives.

Rachel takes the same commuter train every morning. Every day she rattles down the track, flashes past a stretch of cozy suburban homes, and stops at the signal that allows her to daily watch the same couple breakfasting on their deck. She’s even started to feel like she knows them. “Jess and Jason,” she calls them. Their life—as she sees it—is perfect. Not unlike the life she recently lost.

And then she sees something shocking. It’s only a minute until the train moves on, but it’s enough. Now everything’s changed. Unable to keep it to herself, Rachel offers what she knows to the police, and becomes inextricably entwined in what happens next, as well as in the lives of everyone involved. Has she done more harm than good?

A compulsively readable, emotionally immersive, Hitchcockian thriller that draws comparisons to Gone Girl, The Silent Wife, or Before I Go to Sleep, this is an electrifying debut embraced by readers across markets and categories.

Wanda's Thoughts:  A great psychological read and definitely a great debut by this author!

I was swept into the compelling storyline early on and never lost interest as conflict and tension builds into a crescendo of suspense. The author cleverly ties together the core of the storyline, and events come to life through three different character perspectives.

Rachel would rather be on the train than almost anywhere else, watching the houses and their occupants along the track. It has become an imaginary world for her. The couples living in these houses represent what she lost and what she was at one time. Rachel is depressed and has lost her marriage to Tom because of her alcohol abuse – her drinking is out of control. She blames herself for the broken marriage and no longer feels desirable to anyone.

Megan is an attractive and seemingly happy married woman, not wanting to look back and remember her past life. Megan is making a new life with Scott, who seems to adore her, and they’ve been married for three years. But Megan seems to have no direction in her life and becomes restless with her marriage.

Anna is portrayed as a rather cold and uncaring person. She is married to Tom, Rachel’s ex, and they appear to be blissfully happy with their baby girl. But Anna hates living in the same house that Tom and Rachel had once resided. She is tired of being constantly harassed by Rachel and feels threatened by her, worrying for the safety of her daughter.

And the story unfolds as Megan mysteriously disappears, and through numerous twists and turns the author brings the story to a stunning conclusion. My rating is 5 stars. Don’t miss this one – an excellent read!

About the Author:  Paula Hawkins worked as a journalist for fifteen years before turning her hand to fiction.

Born and brought up in Zimbabwe, Paula moved to London in 1989 and has lived there ever since. The Girl on the Train is her first thriller.