I was aware of the popularity of The Girl on the Train before deciding to read it, but it was finding out that Emily Blunt would be the star of the adaptation that encouraged me to read the book. I mean, the woman really can do no wrong. If Miss Blunt thought it was a worthy read, surely I would too. Great news: I did! It's been described as the 2015 version of Gone Girl. Sure, there are similarities - thriller, multiple narrations, different timelines, slightly unlikeable characters - but overall they are separate. Gone Girl is about games whereas The Girl on the Train is all about secrets.
The novel is a slightly unsettling tale that will give you a lesson in character study. Our three lead women are connected through the men in their lives and the mystery begins with a death (I was going to say "shocking event", but, in all honesty, everyone presumably knows that's implied). Though the main protagonist is Rachel, we are privy to other character's thoughts that certainly enlighten the story.
As for the film, it looks like everyone was cast perfectly. I'm a little skeptical of Justin Theroux as Tom for no other reason than he is not at all what I had envisioned (I was picturing a Matthew Goode-Andrew Scott hybrid). Haley Bennett as Meghan is fantastic - I can't say anything else; I've been dying to see Rebecca Ferguson in something since Mission Impossible last summer so I'm very excited for her as Anna; Allison Janney is perfect in everything so I have no doubt she can bring a little more life to Officer Riley; we didn't get much of a look at Luke Evans as Scott but considering the rest of the cast, I'm sure he is game; and lastly, Emily Blunt is obviously looking superb as Rachel.
Here is the trailer:
WARNING: Spoilery-area ahead :)
Some thoughts about the novel:
- All of the characters are clearly messed up and it makes me wonder if a community of people like this really do exist...
- It had quite a few lull points - took me quite a bit longer to get through than I thought
- Will Rachel ever be happy again?
- Kamal should really have his licence revoked
- From the trailer - I think they made it obvious who the killer is
- I first wondered why Anna was part of the narration, but I think I ended up enjoying her parts the most
- Will Rachel and Anna keep in contact? They share a unique bond...
- I think I read the last 70 pages consecutively because I was too hooked at that point to put it down