Book Review: Into the Water by Paula Hawkins (2017)

Into the Water is a psychological thriller by Paula Hawkins, published in 2017. The novel is set in a small town called Beckford, which is situated near a river that has claimed the lives of numerous women over the years.

The story begins with the death of a single mother named Nel Abbott, who is found floating in the river. Nel’s estranged sister, Jules, returns to Beckford to take care of her teenage niece, Lena, and to try and uncover the truth behind Nel’s death.

As Jules begins to investigate, she realizes that her sister was researching the history of the river and the women who died in it, including a young girl named Katie who Lena was friends with. As Jules delves deeper into the mystery, she discovers that many of the women who died in the river were accused of witchcraft and that the people of Beckford still harbor suspicions and secrets about them.

The novel is told from multiple perspectives, including Jules, Lena, Nel, and various other townspeople, each with their own secrets and motives. As the investigation unfolds, the web of lies and betrayals becomes increasingly complex, and Jules realizes that anyone could be a suspect, including herself.

In the end, the truth about Nel’s death and the history of the river is revealed in a shocking twist that exposes the dark underbelly of the town and its inhabitants.

Into the Water by Paula Hawkins is a gripping and atmospheric psychological thriller that keeps the reader guessing until the very end. The novel is intricately plotted, with multiple narratives and a cast of complex and flawed characters.

Hawkins skillfully weaves together the stories of the various characters, revealing their secrets and motivations piece by piece, until the full picture of the mystery emerges. The setting of the small town near the river adds to the eerie and ominous atmosphere of the book, and the themes of memory, family, and the power of myth are explored in a nuanced and thought-provoking way.

The characters in the book are all flawed and troubled, with their own hidden agendas and secrets. Jules, the main character, is a particularly compelling and complex figure, struggling with her own guilt and grief over her relationship with her sister, Nel.

One of the strengths of the book is the way that Hawkins explores the idea of female power and how it can be both feared and vilified. The women in the book are all powerful in their own way, but their power is often seen as dangerous or threatening by the men in the town.

Into the Water is a compelling and well-written psychological thriller that will keep readers on the edge of their seats. The intricate plotting, atmospheric setting, and complex characters make it a standout in the mystery genre, You can get Into the Water from Amazon here.

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