[Review] Into the Water

Author: Paula Hawkins
Sourced: DC Public Library FTW, but snag it on Amazon for under $13
Meows: 1.72 out of 5, for excessive and slightly predictable storytelling


There have been two recent deaths in Beckford and Jules Abbott intends to find out what happened to at least one victim—her sister, Nel. The other death was ruled a suicide, and while the town believes Nel also jumped to her death at the Drowning Pool, Jules refuses to believe this story line. Meanwhile, Lena—Nel’s daughter—knows the truth about her mom and her best friend Katie (the other death) and exactly why they jumped. As Jules works through her grief and the mystery Nel has left behind, the reader learns that the town legends are more than they appear to be, Beckford (and Into the Water) is filled with unsavory characters, and not everyone is on the right side of the law.


“I felt relieved, the way you do when you finally figure out what movie you’ve seen an actor in before, when something hazy that’s been bothering you suddenly snaps into focus.”
page 129

“It seemed to take a very long time, everything took so long these days. No one warned you about that when you were younger, no one told you how slow you would become, and how bored you would be by your slowness.”
page 237


I don’t want to say I didn’t like this book, but I didn’t really like this book. Overall, it gets a 2 out of 10 toe beans. Yes, it’s a fast read. Yes, it’s good for the beach or a poolside in Bali (hi Claire!), but it’s predictable in the worst way possible. I felt like I had read this book before I was halfway through and as I’ve seen other readers comment—there were too many characters. While I feel as though I could follow the plot, it just seemed like there was too much happening and many of the side characters didn’t provide the value of the space they took in the book.

I was also mad when I made it to the final sentence, revealing the plot twist and answer to the mystery of who killed Nel Abbott. There simply wasn’t enough evidence prior to support the statement even though there were plenty of pages to sprinkle it in. Hawkins tried so hard to give us a whiplash experience that it feels like some character and plot developments were missed. I wanted to like this book as I enjoyed The Girl on the Train, but it had too much deja vu content and not enough witty phrasing. I honestly struggled to even find the two quotes above and they don’t speak to the overall book.

So do I recommend the read? Sure, if you’re feeling stuck and can’t move through a book. It’s a nice palate cleanser, but don’t expect to feel moved.


What did you think of Into the Water? Like and leave a comment, please!

One thought on “[Review] Into the Water

  1. Perfect for the poolside in Bali!! Definitely didn’t need all of the characters – I kept forgetting who was who to start with. Also couldn’t believe she ended it with the plot twist. That’s who I had thought had done it, but it could have been developed much better. The plot twist in The Girl on the Train was done much better.
    I do like that you chose the quote from Nickie. That was one that stood out to me.
    Don’t need to read it again, but glad I have and it’s out of the way!!


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