The Girl On The Train Book Review

The Girl On The Train: Book Review by Dinh

4 stars


The Girl on the Train Book Review






The Girl On The Train Review

The girl on the train is Rachel Watson. She commutes into London for work on the same schedule each work day. The same routine and scenery.

There is a spot on the track where the train stops or slows down at the signal and she gets a good view of a couple’s garden. It also happens that this garden is on the same road that she used to live with her ex-husband Tom. Tom is still living in the house that they bought together, but now with his new wife Anna whom Tom left her for.

Rachel likes to watch the happy couple have their coffee in the garden and fantasize that Jess and Jason are the perfect couple, just like her and Tom before he had an affair with Anna and left her.

Then one day that fantasy of the perfect couple is shattered when Rachel sees Jess kissing another man in the garden.

The day after Rachel witnessed this from the train, Jess disappears. Rachel does not know the couple, whose real names are Megan and Scot, but she feels like she knows them and wants to help.

Rachel decides to help with the investigation and tells the police what she saw that morning on the train. The police do not take Rachel seriously because Rachel has a drinking problem and is considered an unreliable witness.

As the plot thickens, Rachel’s drinking spirals and she is mostly drunk and has memory lapses.

What happened to Megan? The vein of the story centers on Megan’s disappearance. We find out what happens to her in the book but why did she disappear and what is her story?


The Girl on the Train Recommendation

To be honest, when I first picked up the book I wasn’t expecting much but as I read and got more into the book it grew on me. Then it became addictive and I had to find out what happened and who the killer was.

The novel is easy to read and the pace is good; steady all the way to the end.

Whilst reading the book I was trying to figure out who the killer was. It is very suspenseful and Hawkins does not give up the killer until about the end of the book. By that time I had guessed and changed my guesses several times and then finally got the killer correct right at the end!

The story gives 3 narratives, Megan, Anna and Rachel.  What I like most about the story is the character Rachel and her narrative. Hawkins does a good job in making us connect to her. She is a lonely woman who drowns her sorrows by drinking. You feel sorry for Rachel because she is messed up and has difficulty in dealing with the breakup of her marriage with Tom.

Rachel is still in love with her ex-husband and she doesn’t know how to stop loving him even after 2 years of being left by him.

Most of the story is told through Rachel’s perspective as she pieces together what happened with Megan’s disappearance. I felt that there was a better understanding of her Rachel’s personality than Anna’s or Megan.

This is a good thriller with a plot that keeps you on your toes. Murder, mystery, love, betrayal with each main character having a motive.

I loved the twists and turns the novel makes as well. This is the brilliance of Hawkins as she gives you a bit of information at a time so you can tie the story together yourself. How do you piece together this murder puzzle when you have a murky drunken view on of what happened?

Pick up The Girl on the Train and read!


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18 thoughts on “The Girl On The Train Book Review

  1. Hi Dinh,
    You have my attention with this one! It sounds really interesting. You gave me just enough information to make me curious as to what happened to Meagan and what is Rachael going to do next.

    I love suspense story’s and mysteries. I just might have to get this one. Thanks for an excellent review!

    1. Hello Gina!
      Do read this book. I really enjoyed it and it had me guessing for a while. I love the twists in this book too.

      I hope you enjoy it!
      Happy reading. 🙂

    1. Hi Phyllis,
      thank you for your comments.
      I enjoyed The Girl on The Train as well. It was a nice surprise to have enjoyed it as I was initially hesitant about it.

      Some reviewers have compared The Girl on The Train to ‘Gone Girl’ by Gillian Flynn, (which I thought was okay and over rated) so I didn’t have much expectation for it.

      I like the Girl on The Train for the way it gives the reader tidbits of information at a time to draw the reader in. It did that to me and I was addicted!

      Thanks for stopping by and commenting. 🙂

  2. Hi Dinh, The Girl on The Train sounds like a book I would enjoy. I do like a good mystery, and I’m terrible at guessing “who dunnit” – I’m never right! As soon as you mentioned Rachel looking out the train window and then noticing a disappearance, I immediately thought of the old Jimmy Stewart movie Rear Window. Not sure if you’re familiar with it, but I really enjoyed it, so I guess that adds to my curiosity about this book.

    1. Hi Hindy,
      thank you for your comments.

      I have not heard of the old Jimmy Stewart movie Rear Window so I Google it and it looks interesting and just what I would like to watch.

      Rear Window was made by Alfred Hitchcock in 1954, and is considered by critics, many film-goers and scholars as one of his best movie and possibly one of the greatest movie ever made. (I think I will be watching this when I get a chance).

      The movie has a common element with The Girl on the Train in that both characters witness something and then there’s a disappearance of a person which leads to and ends with a murder. Beyond that they are very different but I can see why it would remind you of the movie Rear Window.

      The Girl on the Train deals with social issues such as alcoholism, depression and divorce as a backdrop to this ‘who dunnit.’

      What a coincidence that you mentioned Hitchcock because book critics have said that Hawkins’ novel is like a “Hitchcockian thriller.”

      I do love hearing your comments, please drop by again!

  3. ‘The girl on the train’ definitely sounds like an interesting read. This would tend to be out of my realm in terms of what I usually go for, but a good mystery-killer story is never one to put down.

    1. Hi Darrick,
      thank you for your comments.
      I am always thrilled when I go out of my comfort zone and try something different and it ends up being good.

      I have read some amazing books just by trying something I normally wouldn’t and even if it turns out that I didn’t enjoy it that much at least I gave it a try. Variety is the spice of life they say…..

      I hope you enjoy The Girl On The Train and that it keeps your interest.

      Please drop by again!

  4. Hi Dinh, I am always looking for an interesting easy and cozy book, especially a thriller to read for my down time and the girl on the train looks like just the thing.

    1. Hi Gino,
      thanks for your comments.

      The Girl on the Train is an interesting and easy to read novel. It is a bit slow at the beginning of the book but then it’s steady after that. It’s like a slow train gaining speed and then coasting at a constant speed until you reach the destination.

      I enjoyed this psychological thriller and hope that you will to.

      Thanks for dropping by at Arlene’s Book Club and we hope to see you again!

  5. Funny how just your overview drew me in. I love reading books. I think I will have add the girl on the train.

    I haven’t read in quite some time, maybe this will be my first in awhile.

    1. Hello Vic,
      thanks for your comments.

      The Girl on the Train is a good book to get back into the swing of reading novels. It is an easy to read and not a heavy reading book.

      It has a good story line and the main character Rachel you can connect to. She is a depressed drunk and can’t deal with reality and finds solutions to her problems in the drinking it away. Well, I can relate to that, not the drinking part, but the part where you want escapism.

      The other two characters are not as developed but good enough to get the gist of their personality.

      Getting drawn into a novel is the best. Give it a shot and let me know what you think of the book.

      Thanks for stopping by!

  6. hi Dinh
    The Girl on the Train seems exactly like my kind of book! I like those types of suspense books where you on the edge of your seat almost the whole time. From what you wrote, it is fair to assume that Megan dies…Like you did, I would probably try to guess who it is and change my guess more than once. I think the plot seems like an engaging one that I am sure I would enjoy!

    1. Hi Emily,
      thanks for your comments.

      You assumed right about Megan. I didn’t want to go into all the details of the book in the review section and in the recommendation I had to give a hint or two because that’s part of the plot.

      I liked this book because it engages the reader, makes them get involved, and makes them think about the motives of the characters involved. ‘I wonder who did it?’ is a great way to get the reader involved. Hawkins is especially good at this and does not give up the killer until the end of the book.

      I hope you will enjoy this!

    1. Hi Jonathan,
      thanks for your comments. ‘The Girl on the Train’ is a good book to read. I originally didn’t have much expectations of it as I read this right after ‘All the light you cannot see’ which was fantastic. However, ‘The Girl on the Train’ became enjoyable once the plot thickened. It slowly suck me in without me knowing and I was addicted to it by the end.

      Do pick up this book to read and let me know what you think!

  7. Hi Dinh, this seems like an interesting story to read. I like books that keep you hooked, you can’t wait to get to the next page. The whole idea, the way it starts is very original. Seems like a great book to read while commuting to work by train.

    1. Hi Kams,
      thanks for your comments.

      I was surprised that ‘The Girl on the Train’ got me hooked. I didn’t have high hopes at the start of the book and it somehow got me hooked and reeled me in. Hawkins is clever in the way she does this. I thought I had it figured out and then a new bit of information was added so I had to rethink my position. It went on like this until the end. It’s a nice feeling not knowing and then working out the answer to this mystery puzzle.
      It would be a good book to read anywhere. A long commute on the train or bus is perfect as it will give you time to enjoy. It’s also easy to pick up where you left off without wondering what had happened.
      I hope you enjoy this book!

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