Give me books, fruit, french wine and fine weather and a little music out of doors. --John Keats
Saturday, September 26, 2015
"The Girl on the Train" by Paula Hawkins
YES. This is why I read books.
I know this isn't news--you've probably heard this an infinite number of times since January--but this book is riveting. I first heard about it when my husband read a review calling it the new Gone Girl (which I loved reading). Further reviews made it sound like maybe it wasn't *that* great, hence my delay in reading it, but finally my curiosity got the better of me and I bought a copy for, um, my husband's birthday. (That was my excuse, anyway.)
This is basically a murder mystery/thriller where both the past and the present are revealed in a tantalizing strip-tease of words. There's a disappearance (or maybe a murder?), more than one unreliable narrator, and a torrent of jealousy and affairs and duplicity and alcoholic amnesia. And (unless the brilliance of critical mass has blinded me to its flaws), the plot was fitted together so tightly and cleverly. Well, OK, maybe I guessed the truth before I was even halfway through the book, but I wasn't sure until much later, and I was more impressed with my powers of deduction than disappointed by the guessable solution.
If I try to look at it objectively, I can't convince myself that this book was actually amazing. I can't point to anything about the writing or the ideas or the characters that causes this book to stand head and shoulders above the rest. But it completely SUCKED ME IN and I LOVE that.
It does make me wonder, though. What makes this or Gone Girl so appealing when I was so negative about Transgressions? I don't think I've had enough time to put my finger on the difference.