Into the Water is my first read of Paula Hawkins as I have not read The Girl on the Train. However after reading Into the Water, I cannot wait to read her first book as well. My only regret is that I have already seen the film. Others have told me that the book is so much better, not that I’m horribly surprised to hear such, and that the plot was not as transparent as in the film. This was one of my biggest complaints about the film considering all I heard for months is how no one saw the ending coming.
But this not a review about The Girl on the Train. This is about Into the Water. I know my opinion is not a popular one, but I really loved her formatting. I enjoyed gaining the various perspectives of each character and how they built upon one another. This created more intrigue as to who was telling the truth and who was lying because ultimately that is what the reader wants to know. Which characters can we trust and which ones can we not?
I was intrigued by this cast of characters and I wanted to know more almost immediately. Every time a new character was introduced I wondered how these characters would inevitably intertwine with each other. I wanted to see these characters develop. And honestly, I wanted good things for them despite the fact some of them didn’t deserve it. These are not characters that you end up loving by the end of the novel. In fact, in some cases the exact opposite happens. Yes, there is ultimately some pity given toward the Abbott family, but most of my empathy belonged to those whose lives ended in the drowning pool and the psychic no one wanted to listen to or take advice from, Nickie Sage.
I enjoyed how everything unfolded, especially the ending and the reveal. In a lot of ways, I was reminded of Hitchcock’s Shadow of a Doubt. The ending is obvious, but despite my gut feeling I wanted to believe an alternative. And I think half of that is because I wanted to believe that at heart these characters are good people. You want to believe that none of them could hurt a fly. That is not the case, but the desire is there nonetheless.
Ultimately, most the guesses I had about the book were not on the money. In fact, I only had one character pegged from the moment they entered the book. By the end, considering most of my assumptions turned out to be wrong instead of right I would say this sophomore novel does its job. While there might not be many people who share my opinion, I can say Paula Hawkins has made me a fan and I look forward to her future endeavours as much as going back to read her initial one.