My name is Ardis and I am an avid reader and budding writer. I want to share my love of books with others. I work with kids and am interested in finding and creating books that will ignite the reader in everyone. Contact me at: ardis.atkins@gmail.com

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Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Book Review: The Girl On The Train


Synopsis (From GoodReads):

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?


Recently, I got The Girl On The Train, by Paula Hawkins from a fellow book lover.  I've been wanting to read it for a long time, so I was eager to start it.  I found it to be a quick and compelling read.  But I was also troubled by parts of it.

The story is told from several different viewpoints and time periods.  I was confused at first, but finally looked more closely at the beginnings of each chapter where the character's name was listed.  I also found the timelines confusing as they were constant moving about.  I had to go back several times to understand when these events occurred.  I suppose this is just my problem, but I also wonder if the author did this to deliberately confuse the reader.

It seems deception is the name of the game with this book.  Every one is telling lies.  The truth is twisted to suit the character telling the story.  Rachel lies about how bad her drinking is, Anna lies to keep the illusion of a happy marriage, and Megan lies to herself in order to justify her reckless behavior.  And that's just the females in the book!   


While I want to keep this rather vague (I hate spoilers), this made me dislike all of these people.  There are no angels in this novel! 

The book deals with the way people want to be involved in other people's business, and how we think if we see someone often, we think we know them.  When there is a big to do in the neighborhood, everyone want to know what happened, right?  People start coming around to offer assistance as much for being nosy as for being helpful.  The media has their own style of intruding into people's lives.  When something bad happens, reporters always seem to find acquaintances of the suspect to say that this person seemed so nice (or that the person was a creep, who kept to himself).  These personality profiles give the public the false impression that we actually know these people.  But we do not.

While I found this book to be well written and suspenseful, I also felt that sometimes the author went too far with the plot twists.  Some of them were very far-fetched.  It took me out of the moment and had me shaking my head thinking that no one would every behave this way.

Nevertheless, this was a gripping book that kept me guessing as to who was doing what (and with whom).  It was a fun book to binge on.

This is being made into a movie starring Emily Blunt, which should be very absorbing.  Go see it when it is released in October of this year.  But read the book first!


Release Date:  January 13th, 2015

Source:  Borrowed from a friend (Thank you E.)

Format:  Hardcover book

Recommendation:  I quick, gripping read.  Great for mystery lovers.




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  1. I couldn't get into this book at all. I agree with you about disliking each of the female characters. I also found it confusing, jumbled and slow. Nice objective review...you must have more patience than I do! *grins*

    1. Thank you. I did think it was a well written book. But it's hard to root for people who are terrible. I did find it confusing, too. I wondered as I read if it was just me, or if the writer was doing this to mess with the reader. I can see a point being made that we only ever get a one-sided view of a situation. And people are quick to come to conclusions without all of the facts.

  2. I highly recommend reading The Girl on the Train: A Novel.
    I finished reading it today, and my conclusion is that its a very interesting book to read.

    I brought mine off Amazon and they delivered it in just 2 days.
    Here is the link for the book on Amazon:
    The Girl on the Train: A Novel


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