Book Club: Into the Water
Into the Water by Paula Hawkins
I was on a bit of a suspense/thriller novels kick. I really enjoyed reading Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins and I had gotten off the waitlist to read her new(er) book, Into the Water.
In the last days before her death, Nel called her sister. Jules didn’t pick up the phone, ignoring her plea for help. Now Nel is dead. They say she jumped. And Jules has been dragged back to the one place she hoped she had escaped for good, to care for the teenage girl her sister left behind. But Jules is afraid. So afraid. Of her long-buried memories, of the old Mill House, of knowing that Nel would never have jumped. And most of all she’s afraid of the water, and the place they call the Drowning Pool
Related post: Book Club: Never Let You Go
So if you’re interested in this book, my guess is that like me, you are expecting something along the lines of Girl on the Train. I really liked Girl on the Train and I really didn’t see the plot twist coming. It was an amazing thriller novel. The story was believable and at times super suspenseful.
Into the Water is a very different book from Paula Hawkins’ first book. Into the Water doesn’t focus on any one character like Girl on the Train did. In fact, there were so many characters that in the beginning I almost gave up on the book because I had a hard time keeping track of who was who. The mysteries are very different as well. There is a common theme on memories (and reliable memories), the story and the crimes are vastly different from each other.
As I mentioned about the large cast of characters, I literally had to sit and write down who was who at one point because I kept getting them all confused. I actually listened to the audiobook version so it was even more confusing to keep track because if I wanted to refer back to a page, I had to rewind and find it via listening rather than flip a page to look for a character. On one hand, it sort of reminded me of the show Broadchurch (which you should totally watch because it’s so good) in that all of the characters were fleshed out and everyone was a potential suspect. On the other hand, I almost gave up reading this book because there was too many characters introduced in the beginning (almost for half the book) and not enough plot and I almost got a bit frustrated with it.
Still, once the plot got going, it got a lot easier to read. All of the characters are unlikeable, which is pretty trademark Hawkins, a la Girl on the Train. I don’t mind unlikeable characters as long as the writing is good and the plot works so I had no problem with that. The twist, admittedly was anticlimactic BUT I was with her until then and I even stayed up late listening to the book feeling excited. I think that’s the mark of a good book.
I gave this book four out of five stars on Goodreads (rounded up from 3.5) if you liked Girl on the Train, you could probably skip this book and not miss anything. If you’re a fan of suspenseful thriller books, it’s worth a shot to see if you like it, but it’s definitely not my favorite book.