Author: Paula Hawkins
Pages: 386 – Hardcover
Paula Hawkins also wrote Girl on the Train, a thrilling best -seller-turned-movie that, unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’ve probably heard of. I didn’t love Girl on the Train… I read it and enjoyed the story but, considering the surplus of female main character thrillers that have been published lately, it wasn’t as good as others I’ve read. However, Into the Water was much better; the plot and characters were intriguing and unpredictable. I wasn’t sure what would happen next and was so interested that I flew through the story in a day.
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 [Jules], 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. (Goodreads)
What I Liked:
As a reader, you find yourself truly wondering if the women were murdered or jumped off the cliff taking their own lives. There’s a lot of depressing things that have happened in the small town of Beckford and it seems likely that the many young women that have died in the river took their own lives. On the other hand, all of the characters seem to be capable of murder (not to mention all of the intertwining motives).
I loved the unpredictability of the story. Hawkin’s writing makes you feel bad for each character and at the same time wonder if they’ve killed someone. I would highly recommend this book, if you haven’t read it already, as a thrilling summer read. Into the Water has a perfect balance of intensity, relatability, unpredictability and psychological thrills.
What I Didn’t Like:
There are a LOT of characters; it’s hard to keep track in the beginning. As the story progresses and you become more familiar with the families, it’s not a problem. Personally, I tend to enjoy stories with a lot of characters because it tends to create more depth, plot twists and unpredictability. However, I can see how a reader might be annoyed with the vast amount of characters if they choose Into the Water as a summer read. I basically read it straight through, but if you wanted to pick the book up periodically it may become confusing.
Furthermore, you have to pay attention to the story. It’s a murder mystery and every detail gives a hint about what might have really happened. If you’re reading the book sporadically at the beach/by the pool… you might miss out on some of the clues. With the said, it’s an easy read so if you’re an experienced reader it’s perfect for the beach.
Give the book a shot! It was a good read and I found myself anxiously turning pages to find out what happened to the girls. Did they kill themselves? Were they murdered? Why were they murdered? Who did it? It wasn’t ‘blow your mind’ good, but it was an interesting, easy read and perfect for the summer. It isn’t too long and the varying characters make it that much more interesting.
My Next Read:
Since We Fell by Dennis LeHane