To my great delight, last week I learned that my mother-in-law, her best friend, and I were all reading the same book at the same time. “I’m so into this thriller,” my MIL confessed, “that when someone on my flight said, ‘Hey Chuck!’ I looked up and said ‘Yes?’”
The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins drove all of us to distraction. Rachel is a divorced woman who has developed a voyeuristic fascination with a “perfect” couple she sees regularly on her daily commute. As her train passes their courtyard each day, she develops her own fiction for their lives—a life she wishes were her own. The fact that they live a few doors down from her own previous residence, now inhabited by her ex-husband, his current wife, and their new baby, is no coincidence.
Rachel’s fixation isn’t the story, except that she witnesses something about the couple one day that she shouldn’t have seen. Add in Rachel’s severe drinking problem, a night of poor decisions when she gets off at the “perfect” couple’s stop, and a blackout that leaves her with no memory of that night, and suddenly Rachel is a central figure in a woman’s disappearance....continued