Riding the train morning and evening, Rachel imagines the lives of those she sees through the windows. Those living in the houses facing the tracks. She has a special attachment to one young couple she calls Jason and Jess…and imagines the perfect life they share. And down the street from their home is where Tom and Rachel once lived, and where he now lives with his new wife Anna and their baby. Can anything feel more painful?
Rachel’s life is a disaster area…a broken marriage, and a husband who cheated on her. She is an alcoholic and her husband reminded her often enough that she was to blame for everything. Her blackouts make it hard for her to counter his view of their life together.
Narrated by Rachel, Megan (Jess), and Anna, we begin to see that nothing is as it seems. The timeline for the stories takes us back and forth, from Rachel in the present to Megan in the past, with the story slowly moving forward to a significant date: the day Megan went missing.
This is the part where I must leave off describing the events, as those who read it must discover the truths on their own, just as I did. Some might say that all of our narrators were “unreliable,” but some partial truths were hidden beneath all the stories, and it was impossible for me not to have a favorite narrator. One I believed more than the others.
The Girl on the Train: A Novel was a riveting thriller that kept me glued to the pages until the very end, reminding me once again that life (and fiction) can throw many curves. 5.0 stars.