The Girl on the Train: Book Review

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The Girl on the Train: A novel by Paula Hawkins.

Oh, what a fabulous story Ms Hawkins has in store for us here. This is an incredibly suspenseful novel, it’s so mysterious and its twists and turns will keep you reading long after you intended to. It’s without doubt a one-sitting book.

The girl of the title is Rachel. She’s divorced, overweight, unhappy and she drinks too much. Her life is a mess. Every morning she commutes by train a London. And every morning, the train stops at a signal and Rachel can see the street she used to live in. She can see the house she shared with her ex-husband — and he still lives there with his new wife and baby.

The Girl on the TraIN

Every morning and every evening as she passed her beloved old home, she remembered the happy times and thinks about what a mess she and her life have become. She sees another couple too – they live just a little further down the same road. They seem so happy, so perfect — a golden couple. She sees them sitting in their garden or on their terrace, sharing breakfast in the morning or a bottle of wine in the evenings.

They become part of her day and she starts to feel that she knows them. She even gives them names – Jess and Jason. They seem so happy and well-suited. Then one morning, from her train Rachel sees Jess kissing another man. Where is Jason? Who is this man? It seems to Rachel that Jess is having an affair.

Then the news breaks. The woman Rachel called Jess has disappeared. Neighbours report hearing the seemingly happy couple rowing on the evening of the disappearance. What’s worse for Rachel is that she was there, on that street, on the evening the girl disappeared. She’d had too much to drink though- she remembers waking up the next morning bruised and battered but she doesn’t recall what had happened.

When she realised that the police suspect the missing girl’s husband of doing away with Jess, she needs to tell the police what only she knows – that there was another man in her life – Jess had a lover.

But the police don’t believe her. They discover that she has a drinking problem. They find out that she has been harassing her ex-husband and his new wife. She is classed as an unreliable witness.

Follow Rachel’s story as she gets drawn into the investigation. Feel her frustration. As the richly created characters develop within the pages, the reader discovers more about their complex lives and their mysterious histories that have lead to their lives becoming entangled in this quiet and seemingly respectable suburban street.


Jackie Jackson, also known online as BritFlorida, is a highly experienced designer and writer. British born and now living in the USA, she specialises in lifestyle issues, design and quirky stories. You can see a wide range of articles here, or visit her website Tastes Magazine. See The Writer’s Door for more information.

Author: Jackie Jackson

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  1. Enjoyed your review. This particular book has been on my list for so long. Time to get with it! Thanks.

    • I’m sure you’ll enjoy it, Merry. It gets some great reviews on Amazon too!

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