June / July Book Reviews – The Girl On The Train and 3 Others

I’ve been busy reading this summer.  We recently finished up a week long camping trip.  We had great weather, which meant a lot of time available to read!  It was great!  Here are four books which I’ve completed over the past few weeks.

The Girl on the Train – Paula Hawkins

This book seems to be one of the most buzzed books of the year.  I was anxious to get my hands on it. In the vein of Gone Girl, the book follows the story of a group of people, centering on Rachel, the ‘girl on the train’ that sees something that impacts the lives of many.

The book was pretty good.  It kept me guessing until the end.  I suppose this is good for a mystery / thriller type mb-2015-04-beachbook.  Even so, it really didn’t reel me in like I was hoping it would have.  Part of the problem is that the author spent a lot of time attempting to make Rachel a pretty loathsome character.  At a certain point it wasn’t adding much to the plot and became repetitive.  While flawed characters are the centerpieces of many great books, those flaws don’t need to be beaten into the readers head over and over again.  Really, I got it pretty early on.

I would definitely recommend reading it if you liked Gone Girl.  The popular genre now is the ‘it’s not what it seems’.  This definitely fits in.  You’ll probably enjoy it but don’t expect to be floored.  I would rate this 3.5 out of 5 stars.

Suspicion – Joseph Finder

This book looked pretty interesting based on the blurb that the library website sends out when they get new books in stock. It focuses on a single father who is having trouble making ends meet, and ends up getting involved with the wrong sort of people.

The book is a thriller and moves very fast.  I enjoyed it quite a bit and will probably see what other stuff the author has that I might like.  As far as the plot, it definitely took me by surprise, as it did not at all take the path which I’d expected it to take.  There are quite a few areas in the plot where you question whether anybody in the actual position of the character would do what they just did, but it doesn’t go off the rails too much.

Overall, it’s a fun read that’s worth reading if you’re looking for an adventure, but you’ll probably start forgetting it as soon as you set it down.  I would rate this 3.5 out of 5 stars.

Her – Harriet Lane

Again, the blurb here made it look interesting enough that I was willing to take a chance on it.  A woman recognizes someone from her past.  The recognition is not mutual.  Even so, she inserts herself into the other woman’s life as a friend, but not with good intentions.

The book follows the relationship between the two.  We’re able to see that the motives are less than friendly.  We also see the results start to unfold.  It’s interesting when the viewpoint shifts perspective between the two women.

The author tries to build a lot of suspense, though the obliviousness of one of the characters is a little annoying, and the ultimate tell as to how the two women knew each other in the past completely falls flat. There are many books written where it becomes obvious that the author comes up with a great idea and starts going with it, but really doesn’t have an ending in mind, and only come up with one when they run past their original idea. The first couple hundred pages here were well thought out, but the final chapters did not do the rest of the book justice.

I would skip this book, rating it 2.5 out of 5 stars.

It’s been a good few weeks.  Any day I am able to have a book in my hand is a good day for me!

Readers, what are you reading these days?

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