Rating: 4 Stars
Published: January 2015
Genre: Adult Fiction // Thriller
“He won’t say no to me. I was thinking about it on the way home, and that’s the thing I like most about it, having power over someone. That’s the intoxicating thing.”
Paula Hawkins is a debut novelist. And boy, did she hit the ground running with this novel. Rachel is a mess. She lost her job but still takes the train into London every day. She passes by her old house, the one she lived in with the love of her life until she cheated on her and moved his pregnant mistress, Anna, into their home. A few doors down, a new young couple moved in and Rachel thinks they are perfect. Perfect and happy. The girl, Megan, disappears one day. And Rachel thinks she saw something from the train that can help solve the case. Things get complicated when Rachel wants to help the investigation but can’t stop drinking to be taken seriously.
The story is told from the point of view of three women: Rachel, Megan, and Anna. I really liked reading about horrible people. They’re fascinating. All the main characters are not good people. You don’t particularly like any of them, either. What’s great is that these women say what they’re thinking. Their deepest, darkest thoughts on the surface. Those things that you may fleetingly think before disregarding them and continuing on your moral path are the things that they truly think and believe. You can live a vicariously bad live through them.
I love reading unreliable narrators. I really do. They’re frustrating and will keep you guessing. It’s an uneasy feeling that is a treat to read.
There were a lot of moments that hit home. There are insights these character have that will make you think or make you nod your head in agreement. “I liked my job, but I didn’t have a glittering career, and even if I had, let’s be honest: women are still only really valued for two things – their looks and their roles as mothers. I’m not beautiful, and I can’t have kids, so what does that make me? Worthless.” This quote screamed to the feminist in me.
If you enjoy reading Gillian Flynn, you’ll enjoy this as well. Or, if you don’t like Gillian Flynn but love thrillers, still give this one a shot. It’s different and an exciting read that you won’t want to put down until you’re done.