Paula Hawkins


Rhodesian(now Zimbabwe)-born British Author, best known for her 2015 novel "The Girl on the Train"

Author Quotes

I knew as I was agreeing that it wasn?t a good idea. What I know about Scott, from the papers, is almost nothing. What I know from my own observations, I don?t really know. I don?t know anything about Scott. I know things about Jason ? who, I have to keep reminding myself, doesn?t exist. All I know for sure ? for absolutely certain ? is that Scott?s wife has been missing for a week. I know that he is probably a suspect. And I know, because I saw that kiss, that he has a motive to kill her.

I stop at the corner and peer into the underpass. That smell of cold and damp always sends a little shiver down my spine, it?s like turning over a rock to see what?s underneath: moss and worms and earth. It reminds me of playing in the garden as a child, looking for frogs by the pond with Ben. I walk on. The street is clear ? no sign of Tom or Anna ? and the part of me that can?t resist a bit of drama is actually quite disappointed.

I?m going to tell the truth. No more lies, no more hiding, no more running, no more bullshit. I?m going to put everything out in the open, and then we?ll see. If he can?t love me then, so be it.

If I sit in carriage D, which I usually do, and the train stops at this signal, which it almost always does, I have a perfect view into my favorite trackside house: number fifteen.

It feels like coming home - not just to any home, but a childhood home, a place left behind a lifetime ago; it's the familiarity of walking up stairs and knowing exactly which one is going to creak.

It?s transference, Megan, he said. It happens from time to time. It happens to me, too. I really should have introduced this topic last time. I?m sorry.

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On the way back down the road, he passes me in his car, our eyes meet for just a second and he smiles at me.

She must be very secure in herself, I suppose, in them, for it not to bother her, to walk where another woman has walked before. She obviously doesn?t think of me as a threat. I think about Ted Hughes, moving Assia Wevill into the home he?d shared with Plath, of her wearing Sylvia?s clothes, brushing her hair with the same brush. I want to ring Anna up and remind her that Assia ended up with her head in the oven, just like Sylvia did.

That?s what he always used to say to me. Don?t expect me to be sane, Anna. Not with you.

The sense of shame I feel about an incident is proportionate not just to the gravity of the situation, but also to the number of people who have witnessed it.

There's nothing so painful, so corrosive, as suspicion.

What if the thing I?m looking for can never be found? What if it just isn?t possible?

You?re not some grieving, lost child any longer. You?re a completely different person. You?re stronger. You?re an adult now. You don?t have to be afraid of being alone. It?s not the worst thing, is it?

And now I find myself behaving exactly like she used to: polishing off the half bottle of red left over from dinner last night and snooping around on his computer. It?s easier to understand her behavior when you feel like I feel right now. There?s nothing so painful, so corrosive, as suspicion.

But it?s not so bad, I can think of worse traits in a flat-mate. No, it?s not Cathy, it?s not even Ashbury that bothers me most about my new situation (I still think of it as new, although it?s been two years). It?s the loss of control.

He lies to himself the way he lies to me. He believes this. He actually believes that he was good to me.

I am not a model wife. I can?t be. No matter how much I love him, it won?t be enough.

I did become sadder, and sadness gets boring after a while, for the sad person and for everyone around them.

I feel that I have become lighter, more freedom, but also sadder.

And they are a partnership. I can see it, I know how they are. His strength, that protectiveness he radiates, it doesn?t mean she?s weak. She?s strong in other ways; she makes intellectual leaps that leave him openmouthed in admiration. She can cut to the nub of a problem, dissect and analyse it in the time it takes other people to say good morning. At parties, he often holds her hand, even though they?ve been together years. They respect each other, they don?t put each other down.

But my better angels lost again, defeated by drink, by the person I am when I drink. Drunk Rachel sees no consequences, she is either excessively expansive and optimistic or wrapped up in hate. She has no past, no future. She exists purely in the moment. Drunk.

He loves me so much, it makes me ache. I don?t know how he does it. I would drive me mad.

I am not the girl I used to be. I am no longer desirable, I?m off-putting in some way. It?s not just that I?ve put on weight, or that my face is puffy from the drinking and the lack of sleep; it?s as if people can see the damage written all over me, they can see it in my face, the way I hold myself, the way I move.

I didn?t want to draw attention to her resting place, but I couldn?t leave her without remembrance.

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Rhodesian(now Zimbabwe)-born British Author, best known for her 2015 novel "The Girl on the Train"