December 28, 2018

Paula Hawkins: The Girl on the Train

Book 98 of 100 for the year – Paula Hawkins: The Girl On The Train – A tightly woven mystery told from multiple points of view. (And, yes, I do think I will hit my goal of 100 by Monday!)

An unreliable narrator makes a novel fun to read and no one is more unreliable than Rachel. On her daily commute into London, she watches a pair of houses and the occupants. She tells you things as fact that are pure fantasy and she fails to reveal things she really does know.

Normally, such a character is purposely hiding something from the reader. But, in this case, Rachel is an alcoholic subject to unpredictable behavior and blackouts, so she hides things from herself as well.

Other narrators (the story is told from multiple points of view) are also unreliable because they only knows pieces of the story themselves. Even when they are telling you what they believe to be true, they may not have the complete picture.

So when a character disappears, the reader is left to wonder who committed the crime—or even whether a crime has been committed at all.

So when I tell you the book frustrated me, I mean that in a good way. Nothing is straight forward, most everything is different than it appears, and most of the characters make their own problems worse. And that, for me, made this a fun read.

Paula Hawkins: The Girl on the Train
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