The Girl on the TraineBook - 2015
From the critics
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sapphicatthedisco thinks this title is suitable for 16 years and over
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“I have never understood how people can blithely disregard the damage they do by following their hearts.”
“Hollowness: that I understand. I'm starting to believe that there isn't anything you can do to fix it. That's what I've taken from the therapy sessions: the holes in your life are permanent. You have to grow around them, like tree roots around concrete; you mold yourself through the gaps”
I had a teacher at school who told me once that I was a mistress of self-reinvention. I didn't know what he was on about at the time, I thought he was putting me on, but I've since come to like the idea. Runaway, lover, wife, waitress, gallery manager, nanny, and a few more in between. So who do I want to be tomorrow?
“Living like this, the way I’m living at the moment, is harder in the summer when there is so much daylight, so little cover of darkness, when everyone is out and about, being flagrantly, aggressively happy.”
“Sometimes I catch myself trying to remember the last time I had meaningful physical contact with another person, just a hug or a heartfelt squeeze of my hand.”
“It’s possible to miss what you’ve never had, to mourn for it.”
“There’s nothing so painful, so corrosive, as suspicion.”
I had a teacher at school who told me once that I was a mistress of self-reinvention. I didn’t know what he was on about at the time, I thought he was putting me on, but I’ve since come to like the idea. Runaway, lover, wife, waitress, gallery manager, nanny, and a few more in between. So who do I want to be tomorrow? I didn’t really mean to quit, the words just came
I might have been diagnosed with a terminal illness. I might be a barren, divorced, soon-to-be-homeless alcoholic.
Parents don’t care about anything but their children. They are the centre of the universe; they are all that really counts. Nobody else is important, no one else’s suffering or joy matters, none of it is real.
I lay there and I thought of what that teacher said, and of all the things I’d been: child, rebellious teenager, runaway, whore, lover, bad mother, bad wife. I’m not sure if I can remake myself as a good wife, but a good mother—that I have to try.
"Blackouts happen, and it isn't just a matter of being a but hazy about getting home from the club... Tom bought me a book about it. Not very romantic, but he was tired of listening to me tell him how sorry I was in the morning when I didn't even know what I was sorry for. I think he wanted me to see the damage I was doing, the kind of things I was capable of..." ~Rachel
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"Rachel Watson, the principal narrator of Hawkins's psychologically astute debut, is obsessed with her ex-husband, Tom. She's having a hard time putting the past behind her, especially since she confronts it daily, during the hourlong commute to London from her rented room in Ashbury, Oxfordshire, when her train passes the Victorian house she once shared with Tom. She also frequently spies an attractive couple, four doors down from her former home, who she imagines to be enjoying the happily-ever-after that eluded her. Then, suddenly, the woman, pixie-ish blonde Megan Hipwell, vanishes—only to turn up on the front page of the tabloids as missing. The police want to question Rachel, after Anna, Tom's new wife, tells them that Rachel was in the area drunkenly out of control around the time of Megan's disappearance. Hawkins, formerly deputy personal finance editor of the Times of London, deftly shifts between the accounts of the addled Rachel, as she desperately tries to remember what happened, Megan, and, eventually, Anna, for maximum suspense. The surprise-packed narratives hurtle toward a stunning climax, horrifying as a train wreck and just as riveting." Agent: Lizzy Kremer, David Higham Associates (U.K.). (Jan.)
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