‘The girl on the Train’ is a much talked about psychological thriller by Paula Hawkins.

Rachel is a commuter who looks outside the window to catch sight of the seemingly happy couple Megan and Scott living in her old neighborhood. She was once married to Tom, who left her due to her excessive drinking problem and after divorce moved his new wife Anna in the same house Rachel lived in. Megan, according to Rachel has everything she lost to Anna. Miserably drunken, befuddled Rachel one day sees something from the window of the train that changes everything forever. Megan is missing and Rachel knows something. Or she thinks she knows something? Or perhaps she has forgotten what exactly she saw. After all she hardly remembers what she does after drinking. Soon the news of Megan’s murder goes around. She reaches out to the police but she isn’t really a reliable source for an information. Instead she might be a suspect for her unlikely behaviour. Nevertheless, tumbling and shaking she sets out on her own investigation to find answers.

This novel on the whole gives an account of three major female characters Rachel, Megan and Anna, whose lives are interconnected somehow. All three characters are mysteriously dark, immensely interesting and equally suspicious. With lines deepening on your forehead you keep thinking all the while reading, who has done it. At long last the dark veil is uplifted and a creepy truth comes in light.

Hawkin’s narration is fixating. The language is perspicuous. You get involved easily. You feel for dejected Rachel. However, her obsessive, compulsive behaviour and incorrigible drinking habit irritates you. Not everything that looks perfect from a distance is perfect at all from close. People aren’t as good as they look. They aren’t as bad as they seem either. Love becomes the most important thing in your life when you don’t have it anymore and then you go far and near in sheer desperation not knowing who really is the person you are in love with. This psycho dramatic thriller is absolutely unputdownable.

Surbhi Islam

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