The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins

I saw this delightful post from Book Riot – and it made me think of The Girl On the Train.

I… I just didn’t love this book.  I wanted to love it.  I even told myself I loved it for the first few chapters, but I just didn’t love it.  I bought this book.  With real money.  In hardcover.  I am a library girl through and through.  When I do buy books I like to stumble upon them in thrift stores and yard sales and in those nearly mythical used bookstores that are always hiding just over the next horizon. I paid RETAIL for this book, people.  IN AN AIRPORT.  That’s how much I was sure that I was going to love this book.  That’s like… a zillion dollars.  Do you know how many copies of Cat’s Cradle I could have bought with that money?  They said it was suspenseful and interesting and edge of your seat-y.  They said it was a page turner.  They said it was the new Gone Girl.  Let me tell you something… They lied.

The Girl on the Train is depressing and not in a “the future is so bleak” or an “I am just a mote of dust in a vast uncaring universe” kind of way.  It was more like a “well, there goes several hours of my life I will never get back” kind of a way.  The heroine is pathetic.  And yes, I know she is supposed to be pathetic so, well done, I guess, but that doesn’t make her or her story any more compelling.  The crime she is investigating is about as boring as a missing person case can be.  The people involved are sad, but not despicable.  Not the kind of people you love to hate and root against and want so badly to see get what’s coming to them.  Nope.  Just sad people living workaday lives and bad things happen to them and it all feels so pointless and uninteresting. Except for the villain who you don’t know is awful until all of a sudden you do and then that person is SO AWFUL (look at me not spoiling with gender specific pronouns!), but the discovery doesn’t feel like an accomplishment at all.  Something was hidden from you and then it was revealed, and it’s just not satisfying enough.  It didn’t feel like an aha! moment when it all came together.  Just… oh, so that’s what happened… huh.

Oh well, they can’t all be winners.  And, if you aren’t following book riot, let me just suggest that you do that now.


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