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5 Books like The Girl On The Train: Watching Me, Watching You

Mandy Baldwin itcherWe may often think that others are happier in life, but how often are we actually right? And at what point does curiosity become stalking? Books like ‘The Girl On The Train’, ‘No Kiss Goodbye’ or ‘Anything For Her’, delve into the lives of those who watch the lives of others. ~ Mandy Baldwin

Hidden but Not Unseen

In Paula Hawkins’ novel, Rachel feels as if she has nothing: she is an over-weight, heavy-drinking, reluctant divorcee who has lost her home, her job and lives with her only friend.

Rachel has finally lost all dignity. She still commutes everyday so as not to admit to being unemployed; she spends her day watching the world pass by the window.

Each day, she passes by her old home, where her ex-husband lives with his new wife and child. She fixates on the lives of a young couple who live nearby, who seem to have it all.

But all is not as rosy as it seems and suddenly, Rachel needs to get her act together in order to solve a mystery.


Books Similar to ‘The Girl On The Train’…

‘Anything For Her’ (Jack Jordan, 2015)

Image Source: Liz Loves Books

Louise’s life is in tatters.  Her sister is having an affair with her husband and she is about to lose her home. At this point, she suffers the final blow: her daughter goes missing.

If she helps the police, she will reveal a criminal past her daughter wanted to keep hidden. Most probably, her daughter will be killed and next will come Louise.  But even if she keeps the secret, her daughter is bound for death. The choice is no choice: the most devastating of all.

About half way through the story, just when you are sweating hard and gripping the book with white knuckles, you will suddenly get that feeling of a light-bulb going on in your head, as you realise exactly how she should deal with this.

Unfortunately, the penny doesn’t drop for Louise at that point, and to find out if it ever does, you will have to read it.

Superb, tense thriller writing. Next please, Jack!

Similarity Match: 90%
A woman who has lost everything, seen through the eyes of a male writer. A very different animal.

‘The Girl With No Past’ (Kathryn Croft, 2015)

Image Source: WordPress

In one reckless move, Leah lost the rest of her life. For years she had been running away, building a wall around herself, hoping she would never be discovered.

Suddenly, the loneliness of her life seems too much to bear. Now she has let her guard down and two men seem to offer her trust and friendship. But on the 20th anniversary of that day, she receives a card from someone who knows who she is and what she did.

This novel is genuinely gripping. You will find yourself intensely disliking almost every other character. And whenever you realise exactly what Leah did, you will wonder if you’ve given your sympathy to the wrong person.

Similarity Match: 85%
Leah is so discreet, she makes Rachel look even more of a wreck, but the strong sense of being watched gives that familiar feeling of coldness on the back of the neck.

‘No Kiss Goodbye’ (Jannelle Harris, 2015)

Image Source: Amazon

Before reading this, make sure you have a box of tissues at hand. If you have children, tell them you love them. Then open this book and be taken to your worst nightmare. Immerse yourself… 

There has been an accident and everyone believes it wasn’t your fault. Everyone but your husband. And he is determined to steal what you hold most dear: your children. Even worse, he wants you gone. So will he get second-time lucky?

No gore, no horror.. this is pure psychological drama with a big helping of thriller thrown in. To the very last page, you will be on the edge of your seat, and thanking your lucky stars it isn’t you.

Similarity Match: 80%
All the anguish of jealousy and heartbreak as in ‘Girl On The Train’, but this time, you can’t sympathise with the ex.


If You Like ‘The Girl On The Train’, You Will Like…

Not all books which deal with secrets also deal with crime. These recommendations cross that thin line between solving a mystery and looking for the killer.

They may be labelled ‘crime’ but the overwhelming feeling is that secrets have been hidden, along with the body.

‘Dark Place To Hide’ (A. J. Waines, 2015)

Image Source: WordPress

People are going missing, and every one has a story…

Harper, a criminologist, has just gathered the courage to tell his wife he is infertile when, suddenly, she is rushed to hospital with a miscarriage. Five days later, she disappears. Meanwhile, a child who retreats into an imaginary world goes missing. Will nobody listen to the story behind the kid’s fairy-tales?

Harper must find them both but he is tormented by jealousy. However, he truly believes her wife has been abducted. As the investigation proceeds, he realises that there is someone darker and more deviant at work than he had ever imagined.

A wonderful mix of truly evil characters set against utterly likable ones who win instant sympathy. A web of secrecy, a fine exploration of a tormented male mind, and a mystery will have you on the edge of your seat.

An exploration of a man on the edge, just as ‘Girl On The Train’ explores a woman in melt-down. The ending is shocking in a way which ‘Girl On The Train’ tends to blur over.

‘The Bad Things’ (Mary-Jane Riley, 2015)

Image Source: Book Likes

One of the darkest books I have ever read.

Fifteen years ago, Alex’s niece and nephew were abducted. Harry’s body was found soon after, but Millie’s body was never discovered.  

A woman jailed as accessory to the crime has been released on appeal, and Alex is determined to make her reveal what happened to Millie’s body. But in doing so, a secret which has tormented her for most of her adult life will resurface.

Considering the horrific material, there is no attempt to be too graphic, and yet this pulls no punches. Above all, this is a psychological thriller as the plot’s twists remain largely in the minds of Alex and the woman she now sees as her prey.

The two voices are strong – and disturbing.

This is deeper and darker than ‘Girl On The Train’, probably because the subject of murdered children is the ultimate horror. The same carefully measured suspense.


Curiosity Killed the Cat

People-watching can get out of hand as the lives of others begin to fascinate us more than our own.  But when does watching cross the line into stalking? And when does stalking become an investigation?

Have you ever seen more than you were meant to know? Please leave us your thoughts…

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