It’s a unique book rather than being a copy of Girl on the train. It is not centered around a unreliable narrator. In fact, it has several narrators. Different narrators are in different time zones and some narrators speak from different time zones. I could not remember Lauren’s name at the end; because I just thought if her as ‘Shaun’s Mum’. The chapters just had people’s first names, not surnames so it was difficult to remember who was related. I felt I could have done with a character list at the front of the book to flick back to therefore I have provided one below.
I do feel that the book could have been more streamlined with less narrators; for example do not think needed narratives from Nicky or Erin. I think chopping and changing between characters, prevented suspense building, whereas of course Girl on the train built a lot of suspense. I also think the book incorporates some interesting topics. However I would have liked some of those topics to be touched upon deeper; I will write another post with those thoughts, so as to not present spoilers here. It is unfair to judge any book against Girl on the train because that was exceptional. It was an interesting, enjoyable read, but I think it has not reached it’s potential; in that although author writes in an engaging way and it flows nicely, it lacks impact. Although I have read reviews from those who were were underwhelmed by Girl on the train. To be fair I think I had got Girl on the train sussed by the end, yet the suspense was still there; dramatic last pages and you were not sure whether there was gone to be a last twist. Whereas this book is more about story telling; the last part tails off in an attempt to tie up lose ends. That being said; Both books are good holiday books for the summer!
Reference character list
Libby Seeton suspected witch drowned in the pool 1679.
Anne Ward died in the Water 1920.
Prior to 1983 the book mentions the following had also died in the pond but does not give details of when although possibly they were between Libby and Anne: Mary Marsh, Ginny Thomas, Lauren Slater.
Lauren Townsend found dead in the pool 1983.
Patrick Townsend. Lauren’s husband. Policeman before retirement.
Shaun Townsend Lauren’s son a child at the time of death. By 2015 a policeman.
Katie found in the pool June 2015
Louise Katie’s Mum.
Josh Katie’s brother
Nell Abbott found in pond August 2015. She has been researching the other deaths in pond. She had a daughter (Father unknown) and a sister.
Jules Abbott Nell’s sister.
Lena Abbott: Nell’s daughter
Mark: Katie and Lena’s teacher.
Nickie Sage Local tarot card reader, seance host.
Jeanie Sarge: Nickie’s daughter I think (correct me if I’m wrong). She is a police lady.
Erin police lady
6 thoughts on “A review of Into the Water by Paula Hawkins (Author of Girl on the Train). For those reading it or thinking of reading. Including a character list (without spoilers) which I think would have been handy at the front of the book.”
Jeannie is Nickie’s sister (said in Part 3, in Jules chapter, the one just before the chapter “THE DROWNING POOL | 1983 | LAUREN, AGAIN”).
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Ah I was wrong. Feels like ages go read book and thinking about characters – it was a complex web!