Nothing But Reading Challenges Goodreads Group Book of the Month (BOM) listen August 2018.
I enjoyed The Girl on the Train a lot, so was familiar with Paula Hawkins’ style. I downloaded the epub online and had my ipad’s VoiceOver read it out to me.
This is a very twisty thriller about a small town with a river running through it, Sounds pretty idyllic, doesn’t it? Oh, and the town has a dark past. The Drowning Pool was the scene of a death and the first time it shocked the people living in the town. Then, a mother and daughter are found dead in the same pool. There’s a lot of investigation into the deaths and the plot is enhanced by the family and life struggles of the large cast of characters.
Into the Water has an excellent pace to it and there’s also a paranormal aspect with talk of witches. The plot definitely unsettled and intrigued me in equal parts and this is a real page-turner not to be missed!
As I listened to this, I, as well as all the others doing this group session, had to answer some questions. The session for this book ran from the 2nd August 2018 onwards. Here are my answers:
DQs PART ONE Days 1&2
1. Assuming most of you read The Girl on the Train or at least heard about it, what did you expect going into Into The Water? Have your expectations been met so far?
I did listen to Girl on The Train and enjoyed it. I heard a lot of hype about Into the Water and am enjoying it so far. Suspense, great pace and interesting characters and plot.
2. When Jules was first told about Nel, she was relieved for a moment, because it was no one she ‘cared about’. Then she was angry. What to you think happened between the sisters that drove them apart so badly that Jules doesn’t even properly know her niece? Not sure what would have driven them apart, but wondering if we will find out. How has this introduction formed your first opinion of Jules? I am curious to find out more about Jules and Nel and what happened between them. I think maybe Nel holds a grudge easily but need more information to form an opinion.
3. Katie’s sudden death understandably was very hard on her family. Her mum took pills upon pills to numb the pain, but “after a while she came to grasp that the horror of rediscovering her daughter’s absence, over and over again, was not worth the hours of oblivion.” What are your thoughts on this quote? And where do you think Louise vanishes to in the middle of the night? I’m wondering why she took the pills in the first place if they did not help. Nothing really helps the pain of losing a loved one. No idea yet where Louise has gone and why but looking forward to finding out.
4. Into The Water is told from quite a lot of different perspectives. Do you think this adds to the story, or does it make things more complicated? Does it affect your reading flow? It adds to the story for me and helps the pace. I like the alternate chapters as feel I get an insight into what each character thinks, feels and experiences.
5. Nickie Sage claims to be a psychic and sees or at least feels things that others don’t. Why do you think has the author, Paula Hawkins, included this character? Do you think she actually is important to the story, or could it be told without Nickie? Do you personally believe in the occult like tarot readings and seances? I think she included Nickie Sage to try and guide the others through what’s happening to each of the charcters. Or maybe something will happen to her. I think there are people who have a gift for tarot.
6. Nel was working on a book on the Drowning Pool before she passed away. Do you get her obsession with the river, and is this the only reason so many people from Beckford seem to have disliked her? Would you personally choose to read a book like hers? She seems quite an unlikeable person from the outset. I do understand her obsession with the river. She may have done something bad for people to dislike her so much.
7. Finally, it’s time for theories. It seems to be very likely that Katie’s and Nel’s deaths are connected in one way or another. What do you think happened, who are your prime suspects? I do not have a suspect yet. I prefer to see what happens.
DQs days 3&4
1.Mark found the bracelet that Nel was wearing in Helen’s desk. Did Helen have something to do with Nel’s death or at least knows what happened?
I think Patrick murdered Nel and that Helen had an affair with him. He may or may not have let on about his plans. Or she could have been more involved.
2. Lena is angry that the officers are not asking the correct questions. Why isn’t she willing to tell them what they need to know? Why does Lena refuse to betray Katie? What are Josh and Lena hiding? Is it fair for Lena to force Josh keeping the secret?
Lena is still so immature about everything. She seems to want to keep Katie’s secret but I do not really believe Katie would have killed herself. Maybe Lena has more to hide than we think, or Katie did have other things to hide and Lena keeping Katie’s secret is about protecting herself too….
Not sure what Josh and Lena could be hiding. Katie’s gone, I’m not sure that this is fair of Lena. Makes me think there is more to the whole thing than meets the eye if Lena is acting like this, but I will have to keep going with the book to find out. Really enjoying it so far.
3. I am curious about Patrick. It seems there’s more to him than just an old man with lapses of memory. He tells Helen that he never moved because he has work to do. What work does that?
There is definitely something he is guilty of. Either that, or Nickie is imagining the things her sister Jeannie has supposedly told her.
4. So, we find out that Patrick’s wife was Nicki’s sister. I am curious of the secrets that she knows, especially since it seems like she does have a real gift with ghosts. It seems no one takes her seriously. Will the officers listen/believe her?
Jeannie worked with him, so would know of things that her boss did. Maybe Nickie is imagining the whole thing though. I think she will say or do something to unravel the whole mystery.
5. Jules is dealing with issues of her past now that she is home. Is that skewing her views when she saw Robbie at Nel’s funeral? Also, with finding the letter LS on the mirror, do you think it is a ghost or Lena messing with Jules?
I don’t think anyone is messing with Jules. She’s back in the place where her estranged sister just died; she feels guilty, There are a lot of nasty memories hunting her and it is understandable she would see things.
DQs days 5&6
1. How are we feeling so far? I know at this point, I was 100% invested in this story and totally annoyed that I had little to no answers thus far. How about you? Do you love the mystery? Is it driving you nutty? Have you thrown the book?
I am really enjoying the mystery and suspense in the book. The way there is so much intrigue, such a detailed plot and so many twists and turns. Everyone is involved/ guilty in some way.
2. Mark. Mark. Mark. Personally, I hated him the first moment he was mentioned. He just struck me as phony. Now, that you’ve really had a chance to get the full brunt of his story- how do you feel about him? Innocent bystander that was sucked in? Man in love/lust? Or did he deserve alllll the things that come his way?
Mark was a terrible and selfish person for taking advantage of Katie. He claims to have fallen in love with her, but was very quick to dismiss her when he got scared that Nel was going to tell someone about them. After Katie died, he made sure he got rid of any trace of her in his house. He was only thinking of himself. Someone who loved a person who died would not be so quick to do this. There is nothing good about him at all.
3. Let’s talk Robbie Cannon for a moment. Jules has quite the revelation in this part of the book. Did you feel it was needed for the story?
I do think it was needed. Jules needed to know that her sister did not know that it was Robbie who raped her. Now this paves the way for Jules to move on and forgive her sister.
4. This book, much like Girl on the Train has a whole mess of fantastic female characters. Did you have a favorite? (Team Lena here! )
Nickie was my favourite character. Lena seemed complicated but interesting and I just felt that Nickie had fewer issues and I liked the paranormal element surrounding her character, it gave the book an interesting twist. I felt Lena was overly harsh and dramatic at times but was still an interesting character.
5. Erin seems to be completely blindsided by the twists and turns of this case. If this was you, would you continue to be a police officer/detective or run for the hills?
Erin struck me as a bad police officer really. Her or her superior should have informed her more about the town/case so she was a little more prepared. I think another officer should have been assigned to the case.
6. And now, the biggest question of all, did you see that ending coming? I was 100% shocked and am still recovering even two weeks after finishing this book.
The ending really took me by surprise. Great plot twist and a surprise reveal. This has ranked Into the Water overall better than Girl on the Train for me. Excellent book and I would recommend it.