Book Review: Into the Water by Paula Hawkins

Synopsis:

A single mother turns up dead at the bottom of the river that runs through town. Earlier in the summer, a vulnerable teenage girl met the same fate. They are not the first women lost to these dark waters, but their deaths disturb the river and its history, dredging up secrets long submerged.

Left behind is a lonely fifteen-year-old girl. Parentless and friendless, she now finds herself in the care of her mother’s sister, a fearful stranger who has been dragged back to the place she deliberately ran from—a place to which she vowed she’d never return.

With the same propulsive writing and acute understanding of human instincts that captivated millions of readers around the world in her explosive debut thriller, The Girl on the Train, Paula Hawkins delivers an urgent, twisting, deeply satisfying read that hinges on the deceptiveness of emotion and memory, as well as the devastating ways that the past can reach a long arm into the present.

Beware a calm surface—you never know what lies beneath.

My Review:

I enjoyed The Girl on the Train; it was the epitome of the unreliable narrator and an incredibly twisty story that surprised me; so I was looking forward to Into the Water. When I read the description, I though, oooh this sounds good. But when I started reading it, I found the amount of point of views incredibly confusing. Maybe I just don’t have the attention span to keep up, but in my opinion, if its a book that’s too long to read in one sitting (which this is) that many POVS just leaves the reader frustrated that they can’t keep the story straight. I had to take notes to keep the events straight, which ultimately marred my reading enjoyment and kept bringing me out of the story.

From a writer’s perspective, I applaud the author for weaving an intricate tale that comes together in the end, but I do wonder how many readers will even get to that payoff point. Also, by continually skipping character POV it becomes increasingly difficult to have any empathy for the characters involved, and when it comes to any book (especially a thriller where bad things inevitably happen), the reader needs to feel for the character to go on that emotional journey with them. I did find myself not giving a fig about the arguably large cast of protagonists.

The front cover is good enough, although I’,m pretty sure that if it hadn’t had had ‘By the author of The Girl on Train’ on the front, it perhaps wouldn’t have attracted so much attention.

Overall, I’d give this book 3 out of 5 stars; As an author, I truly believe in pushing literary boundaries and challenging readers, but Into the Water was just a little too much for me.

Find the book on Goodreads…

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