The Girl on the Train

The Girl on the Train

Book - 2015
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Rachel takes the same commuter train every morning, flashing past a stretch of cozy suburban homes, and stopping at the signal that allows her to daily watch the same couple breakfasting on their deck. Their life, as she sees it, is perfect ... until she sees something shocking. It's only a minute until the train moves on, but now everything is changed. Rachel goes to the police, and becomes inextricably entwined in the lives of everyone involved. Has she done more harm than good? -- Review from website.
Publisher: New York :, Riverhead Books, a member of Penguin Group (USA),, 2015
ISBN: 9781594633669
Characteristics: 323 p.; 24 cm


From the critics

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Dec 06, 2018

I am sure it is a great book, after all it has received rave reviews. However, after about 30 or 40 pages I returned it to the library. Couldn't stand the main characters.

Nov 16, 2018

I loved this! I read this because my boss recommended it. At first I thought it was a little crude. I didn't think some of the language was necessary for the plot or character development. I would still give it a 5/5 though. It kept me guessing and I couldn't wait to get back to the book. There were definitely some twists I was not expecting. I am very excited to watch the movie and see if it lives up to the book!

ArapahoeMarieC Oct 01, 2018

This book was interesting and did have a few twists, however, none of the characters were sympathetic and therefore, I had problems becoming invested in the plot.

Sep 17, 2018

I don't really like this book. Alcoholics are self centered annoying people who make life tough on everyone around them. They are needy and selfish and manipulative, I know I've dealt with them in real life so I don't enjoy reading about them. But as I read more I begin to feel sorry for this woman. She really wants to help solve the mystery but nobody believes anything she says, they call her "unreliable" and make her hate herself even more. She desperately wants to remember what happened on the important night when the woman went missing and she herself was hurt but it is lost in a blackout. Maybe she will recover it later. The book may be uncomfortable to read but it is making me think about the alcoholics in my life and see another side of them, a less judgmental point of view.

Sep 09, 2018

This one was a wonderful, crazy ride for me. Truly a page turner, I could not put it down. I related to the main character, self destructive nature and all. Flawed complex characters are my favourites.

Sep 05, 2018

I wasn't impressed. All of the characters were flat and annoying, and because I couldn't find any reason to care about a one of them, there was little to no suspense for me. Though there are three different protagonists, their voices all sounded very similar. In the end, I was more irritated than anything and glad to be finished with it.

Jun 20, 2018

Don't Miss This Train

February 10 2015
An absolute page turner. Once you pick up this novel you will not be able to put it down. It is a psychological thrill ride reminiscent of Hitchcock's "Rear Window." Is what we see through the window actually true? How reliable is the narrator who is a lonely alcoholic divorcee? Go along for the ride. You will not be disappointed. NC

Apr 20, 2018

After reading it, I couldn't understand why all the accolades. I found it slow moving and pretty boring. The characters were flat, not much description and never found any suspense.

Apr 09, 2018

I did not really like this story. Not much of a "suspenseful thriller." It seems to me that the author unfairly makes an unlikely character the murderer, after building interest in two other men, leaving their story unexplained.

Mar 16, 2018

I rated this higher than it probably deserved--just one of those books that hit me the right
way. A chronically relapsing, self-pitying alcoholic voyeur as sleuth way suspensefully appealing.

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Feb 10, 2018

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Add a Quote
Apr 14, 2017

“I have never understood how people can blithely disregard the damage they do by following their hearts.”

Apr 14, 2017

“Hollowness: that I understand. I'm starting to believe that there isn't anything you can do to fix it. That's what I've taken from the therapy sessions: the holes in your life are permanent. You have to grow around them, like tree roots around concrete; you mold yourself through the gaps”

Jun 25, 2016

I had a teacher at school who told me once that I was a mistress of self-reinvention. I didn't know what he was on about at the time, I thought he was putting me on, but I've since come to like the idea. Runaway, lover, wife, waitress, gallery manager, nanny, and a few more in between. So who do I want to be tomorrow?

Feb 29, 2016

“Living like this, the way I’m living at the moment, is harder in the summer when there is so much daylight, so little cover of darkness, when everyone is out and about, being flagrantly, aggressively happy.”

“Sometimes I catch myself trying to remember the last time I had meaningful physical contact with another person, just a hug or a heartfelt squeeze of my hand.”

“It’s possible to miss what you’ve never had, to mourn for it.”

“There’s nothing so painful, so corrosive, as suspicion.”

Aug 18, 2015

Rachel's mindset:

I had a teacher at school who told me once that I was a mistress of self-reinvention. I didn’t know what he was on about at the time, I thought he was putting me on, but I’ve since come to like the idea. Runaway, lover, wife, waitress, gallery manager, nanny, and a few more in between. So who do I want to be tomorrow? I didn’t really mean to quit, the words just came

I might have been diagnosed with a terminal illness. I might be a barren, divorced, soon-to-be-homeless alcoholic.

Parents don’t care about anything but their children. They are the centre of the universe; they are all that really counts. Nobody else is important, no one else’s suffering or joy matters, none of it is real.

I lay there and I thought of what that teacher said, and of all the things I’d been: child, rebellious teenager, runaway, whore, lover, bad mother, bad wife. I’m not sure if I can remake myself as a good wife, but a good mother—that I have to try.

Jan 15, 2015

"Blackouts happen, and it isn't just a matter of being a but hazy about getting home from the club... Tom bought me a book about it. Not very romantic, but he was tired of listening to me tell him how sorry I was in the morning when I didn't even know what I was sorry for. I think he wanted me to see the damage I was doing, the kind of things I was capable of..." ~Rachel


Add a Summary
Jan 04, 2017

Enjoyed reading. Loved all the twists and turns of Rachel.

Oct 07, 2015

"Rachel Watson, the principal narrator of Hawkins's psychologically astute debut, is obsessed with her ex-husband, Tom. She's having a hard time putting the past behind her, especially since she confronts it daily, during the hourlong commute to London from her rented room in Ashbury, Oxfordshire, when her train passes the Victorian house she once shared with Tom. She also frequently spies an attractive couple, four doors down from her former home, who she imagines to be enjoying the happily-ever-after that eluded her. Then, suddenly, the woman, pixie-ish blonde Megan Hipwell, vanishes—only to turn up on the front page of the tabloids as missing. The police want to question Rachel, after Anna, Tom's new wife, tells them that Rachel was in the area drunkenly out of control around the time of Megan's disappearance. Hawkins, formerly deputy personal finance editor of the Times of London, deftly shifts between the accounts of the addled Rachel, as she desperately tries to remember what happened, Megan, and, eventually, Anna, for maximum suspense. The surprise-packed narratives hurtle toward a stunning climax, horrifying as a train wreck and just as riveting." Agent: Lizzy Kremer, David Higham Associates (U.K.). (Jan.)
[Page ]. Copyright 2014 PWxyz

siammarino May 07, 2015

Rachel is divorced, depressed, and alcoholic, but she manages to remember who brutally hit her, and solve the mystery of a missing woman. I liked the psychological inquiry into alcoholism and its effects, but I did get confused by the various female characters in the book.


Add Notices
Sep 01, 2016

Frightening or Intense Scenes: The culmination of the book has a particularly gruesome scene.

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