Last month, I finally sat down and read a book. A book I venture 90% of the female population in the developed world had already read, but I read it none the less. “The Girl on the Train” is a mystery/thriller that takes place in the UK and focuses on several characters who alternate in narrating the story. The story – as you are all probably well aware of by now – goes something like this: Rachel, a 30-something washed up alcoholic rides the train to and from London Monday through Friday in an attempt to convince her roommate that she is not a hot mess and has not lost her job at the PR firm she used to work at before getting fired due to her problem with drink. Staring out of the window, she observes the lives of others. She is particularly invested in the lives of “Jess” and “Jason,” a couple who she has never met but fantasies about. They live in the same community she once lived in with her ex-husband and live the life she wishes she had – or at least this is the story about them she has made up in her head. One day, while watching “Jess” on the balcony, she witnesses something that shocks and angers her. A few days later, “Jess” is dead. Now the whodunit beings.
The book opens with Rachel’s narration, but the reader is quickly introduced to Megan (the woman Rachel has called Jess), as well as Anna, the woman Rachel’s ex-husband Tom left her for. Through non-linear story telling, we learn more about each woman, their connection to each other, and their connection to the men in their lives. We quickly learn that the lives of each character are much more intertwined than originally imagined. We also learn that the things we think we see are often misleading, as are our own recollections of events we were there to be part of and witness with our own eyes.
“The Girl on the Train” is not some incredible literary masterpiece of the 21st century, but it definitely is not Twilight (sorry,Stephenie Meyer). And if you are into suspenseful thrillers, plot twists, and a good mystery, I would definitely recommend giving “The Girl on the Train” a go. It’s a quick and easy read, perfectly suited for a commute to work, a lazy Sunday, or a holiday.