Paula Hawkins – Into The Water

35179024  4 Stars

 

I received this book from the german publisher so this reveiw will be in german 🙂

 

Nach dem sensationellen Erfolg, den das erste Buch der Autorin „Girl On The Train“ erfahren hat, waren natürlich alle auf das nächste Buch der Autorin gespannt. Ich bin ziemlich beeindruckt, das die Autorin nicht in ihre eigene Falle getappt ist und etwas Ähnliches geschrieben hat. Denn dieses Buch ist ganz anders. Es ist weniger Mainstream, erst recht nicht anbiedernd. Paula Hawkins hat ihren Erfolg offenbar dazu benutzt, ihren eigenen, eigenwilligen Stil weiter zu entwickeln. Das ist schon einmal ziemlich bemerkenswert.

 

Über den Inhalt möchte ich gar nicht so viel sagen. Das sollte man einfach auf sich zukommen lassen als Leser. Aber so viel sei doch gesagt: es gibt einen Haufen Figuren, aus deren Sichtweise man die Story sieht. Das fand ich eine geraume Weile sehr verwirrend. Wer war Erin nochmal? Oder Nicky? Aber der Wechsel hat auch seinen Reiz. Zu Anfang sieht man die Dinge durch mehrere Augen und somit die Figuren aus anderen Blickwinkeln. Schon schnell ist klar, dass hier jeder Geheimnisse und ein gewisses Problempotential hat. Im Verlauf der Geschichte lernt man langsam all die Namen, aus deren Sicht man einen Blick auf die Handlung wirft. Die Autorin entwirft hier ein sehr düsteres Bild einer englischen Kleinstadt. Hier wird viel unter den Teppich gekehrt. Der unglückselige Fluss mit seinem Selbstmordpool ist fast eine eigenständige Figur. Eine sehr dunkle und düstere Stimmung schwebt über der ganzen Story. Lebenslügen und Geheimnisse prägen die Charaktere. Eine selbsterfüllende Prophezeiung lässt offenbar einige Frauen, die in dem Ort lebten, ihren Tod in diesem Fluss finden. Die Zurückgebliebenen  suchen nach Erklärungen, aber dabei betrügen sie sich selber. Erinnerungen sind trügerisch und oft nicht wahr oder einfach nur subjektiv. Mit diesem Thema spielt Paula Hawkins auf sehr glaubwürdige Weise.

 

„Into the Water“ ist ein sperriges Buch. Es hat viele Erzähler, die alle etwas verbergen oder einfach nur ihre Version der Geschichte erzählen. Ich bin mir nicht sicher, ob alle Leser, die „Girl on The Train“ gut fanden, auch dieses Buch mögen würden. Denn die Autorin bedient offenbar bewusst nicht die Erwartungshaltungen. Das finde ich schon mal ziemlich cool. Dieses Buch ist noch wesentlich ungeschmeidiger als ihr erstes. Hawkins ist eine frische Stimme im Thriller-Genre, die sehr eigenwillig erzählt und einen sehr individuellen Schreibstil hat. Dieses Buch ist düster, unbequem und etwas schwierig. Es hält einiges in der Hinterhand  und löst nicht alles auf. Es hat ausschließlich unsympathische Figuren, die auch nicht unbedingt logisch, dafür aber sehr menschlich, agieren. Ich empfinde großen Respekt für Hawkins‘ eigenwilligen Schreibstil. Sie entwickelt ihre Story konsequent ungeschmeidig. Ich bin nicht in jedem Punkt mit ihr konform. Ihre Figuren tun doch oft Dinge, die sie anderen als negativ ankreiden. Sie sind sozusagen konsequent inkonsequent.  Auch wenn ich dadurch das Lesen als etwas anstrengend empfand, ist es doch gleichzeitig faszinierend gewesen. Auch die Story besticht durch ihre Düsterheit. Ein durch und durch ungewöhnliches Buch, das weitab vom Mainstream ist und einen als  Leser etwas fordert. Es ist kein Pageturner und keine Easy-Read, dafür bleiben die Figuren und die Story umso länger haften. Ein ungewöhnliches Leseerlebnis.

Skitters – Ezekiel Boone

61onCCLXM6L._SY346_  3 Stars

This is the second book in the creepy spider trilogy. I liked the first book although it was full of frightening crawlies. This book takes of where the last one ended and it is build similar. We have again a lot of characters. The important ones from the first book of course but also again a hack of a lot of people we meet for one chapter and they all got a full background story. For this reason the book develops slowly. We see how the spider apocalypse develops and spreads over the USA.  I disliked these full stories for minor characters already in the first book. But here I found it quite boring. What’s happening is mostly interesting but it is a bit annoying to read 2 or 3 pages of information I don’t need. It slows the book down. In the last third it gets a little bit more interesting. The story begins to head to the end, the cliffhangers and makes me wanting to read immediately the last book.

 

I think this book is a typically middle book. It gives us a few more information and developments but for itself it would not work. I think it would have been better to put the story into one book, maybe with a lot more pages but just tighten it up a bit and just make  one single book. But this is marketing I suppose. Nevertheless the book does its job. I was a bit bored during reading and I skipped sometimes a few pages- But I also want to read the next book and learn what it is all about this creepy spiders.

I received an ARC from NetGalley in return for an honest review

Emma Kavanagh – The Killer On The Wall

killer 3 Stars

In a close knitted community in the north of England 15year old Isla Bell ran along Hadrian’s Wall and stumbles onto 4 bodies and a young boy seriously wounded. From this day on everything changes for all the people who were involved.

20 years later Isla is a forensic psychologist. She examines the brains of serial killers and finally she is able to examine the convicted killer of those people she once found. Her father, who caught this man, built his career on this case. He is the famous Eric Bell. Isla is married to Ramsey, the only survivor. But suddenly the killing starts again. But how can this be? The killer is behind bars for many years now. Is there a copycat? Or was there another killer who starts again now?

“The Killer on the Wall” is a dark thriller. Everyone who was involved in the crimes is traumatized. Isla waited 20 years and prepared herself to examine finally the man who killed people she knew and beaten her husband almost to dead. When the new victims begin to appear she does not know what to think. Her whole world begins to fall apart. The author does a great job showing this. But on the other hand nothing really happens for quite a long time. There is also Mina, a young police officer from London who moved to the north for personal reasons. Through her we see the police work on this case. She begins to look at the old case again and finds disturbing things. This is not as gripping as it sounds. The pace is very slow. In the last third the author offers suspect after suspect and twist after twist. But it is a bit too much. And the motive did not convince me.

The story itself is far from new but it is unique enough developed. The characters are ok, although I could not connect to them. This is my second book from Emma Kavanagh. I already had my problems with her writing style in the other book I read. I think the writing is aloof. I just could not connect to this book. I found my thoughts drifting apart while reading. It is probably my personal problem but I just don’t like the author’s writing style. It was an OK read but I think I would not choose a third book from the author. Her books are just not my cup of tea.

I received an ARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest reveiw

Charlie Donlea – The Girl Who Was Taken

51hMmkODNsL._SY346_  5 Stars

Yay, finally I got my first 5 star review for 2017! I began to ask myself if I choose the wrong books or if I became over-critical. I read a lot of books which everybody was raving about and I felt like “meh, what’s that fuss about”. I really feared that I would not like this book as well. But it was quite the contrary. I really enjoyed this one.

The story is about two young girls who disappeared a year ago during a beach party. Megan was found two weeks later. She has almost no memory of the time she was held captive in a bunker because of heavy drugging. Nicole, the other girl, is still missing. Megan wrote a book and became a little bit of a celebrity. But nobody speaks about Nicole.

Nicole’s sister Livia is a forensic intern. She fears the day her sister may show up on her table. But instead the body of a young man comes onto her table. His case is a bit complicated. And it gets even more complicated when she learns that he knew her sister. Livia starts her own investigation and slowly she begins to unravel the mystery about the abductions.

I don’t want to say too much about the story. At first it was a bit slow but you can see how thoroughly the author builds his story and the characters. With every page it gets more fascinating and unputdownable. It is a dark and disturbing story. There are a lot of strong characters. The author does a terrific job developing the complex story and bringing in a lot of details and information. I liked the insight of the forensics; that was quite interesting. I also liked the ending, as sad and sudden as it is.

This was my second book from Charlie Donlea but certainly not my last one. I liked “Summit Lake” but I loved this one. It’s a terrific and mind-bending read and would highly recommend it

I’d like to thank Kensington Books and NetGalley for giving me an advanced ARC in exchange for an honest review

Megan Miranda – The Perfect Stranger

31443398   4,5 Stars

This is the second book from Megan Miranda. I really enjoyed “All the Missing Girls”. It was one of the most unusual books I have ever read. This book is different although you can recognize the unique writhing style. I really liked this one, too.

 

Former reporter Leah has lost her job. She just wants to leave her mistakes and misjudgments behind. When she ran into an old friend one night which offers hers spontaneously to move into rural Pennsylvania with her she is happy to agree. Leah and Emmy used to live together for a few months after college. Then the lost contact for 8 years but Leah always felt deeply connected to Emmy.

 

In this little town in Pennsylvania Leah does her best to blend in. But she has the feeling that somebody is stalking her. Then a young woman is found almost beaten to dead and soon afterwards a second body turns up in a nearby lake. Then Leah realized that she has not seen Emmy for days and can’t track her whereabouts. She reports her missing and suddenly has to face the fact that she knows literally nothing about her friend.

 

The author weaves a dark and complex story. There are a lot of flashbacks which explains what happened back in Boston with the story Leah wrote and what went wrong. Her characters are not very likable, especially Leah. She is sullen and secretive. But that did not bother me. I don’t have to connect or like the characters in a book. I enjoyed the slow building tension, how with every new piece of information the story became more and more mysterious and that everybody was so unreliable. And I also liked the ending.

 

I will definitely look out for Megan Miranda’s next book.

 

I received an ARC from Simon & Schuster via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Merken

The Girl Before – J D Delaney

51KP6JQKfhL._SX326_BO1,204,203,200_

 

I received this book from the german publisher so  my review will be in german

 

Ich war mir nicht sicher, ob ich dieses Buch mögen würde. Der Klappentext klang vielversprechend. Aber die englischen Besprechungen des Buches waren zwiegespalten. Zu seltsam war die Ausganglage. Man mietet eine Wohnung  mit hunderdrölwzig Regeln, die fast alle die persönliche Grenze überschreiten. Wer tut so etwas? Aber in der Tat gelingt es dem Autor, die Personen, die das tatsächlich tun, zu verstehen. Warum sie aus ihrer persönlichen Lebenssituation bereit sind, sich diesem Diktat zu unterwerfen.

 

Die Story wird aus 2 Blickwinkeln erzählt. Emma, damals. Jane, jetzt. Emma ist bereits tot, als Jane die Wohnung mietet. Wir erfahren über beide Frauen, wie und warum sie bereit waren, sich diesen Regeln für das Bewohnen dieses Hauses zu unterwerfen und dann tatsächlich in diese exklusive Residenz einziehen. Aus beiden Sichten wird abwechselnd erzählt.  Zunächst sieht das ganze recht absehbar aus. Beide Frauen machen ähnliche Erfahrungen mit dem Architekten des Hauses. Sie erleben ähnliche Situationen. Aber nach und nach entfernen sich ihre Erfahrungen. Das Buch entwickelt sich stetig in eine andere Richtung als man vielleicht erwartet. Die Erzählerinnen  sind doch sehr unterschiedlicher als man zuerst dachte. Ich war zunehmend fasziniert, obwohl über weite Teile nicht wirklich viel passiert. Es ist mehr das unterschwellige. Zuerst fesselt die Darstellung der beiden Frauen, wie sie bestimmte Sachen mit dem faszinierenden Architekten Edward erleben. Dann gehen die Beschreibungen langsam auseinander und nehmen eigene, ungeahnte Wege

 

Dieser Krimi/Thriller ist wirklich sehr speziell. Es ist einerseits sehr glattpoliert und schnörkellos. Zugleich aber  handelt er sehr spezifische Themen ab und man sollte nicht alles glauben, was die beiden Frauenfiguren erzählen. Ich habe, glaube ich, noch nie ein derart konstruiertes Buch gelesen. Alleine deshalb hebt sich dieses Buch vom Mainstream ab. Hier darf man nichts glauben. Zugleich muss man die unglaubliche Ausganglage akzeptieren. Wenn man das so annimmt wird man mit einem ungewöhnlich gestrickten Thriller belohnt. Mich hat dieses Buch sehr beschäftigt. Wenn ich die Zeit gehabt hätte, hätte ich es in einem Rutsch durchgelesen. Es flutscht nur  so dahin. Die Themen, die es behandelt, sind durchaus tiefsinnig. Ich bewundere auch die Kunstfertigkeit des Autors. Ihm gelingt es auf einer Seite in wenigen, präzisen Worten, die Gefühle einer Mutter über eine Totgeburt zu beschreiben, die mir die Tränen in die Augen trieben. Im Weiteren schreibt er dann einen ungewöhnlichen, komplexen und doch aalglatten Krimi. Dieses Buch ist ein faszinierender Zwitter. Eiskalt, schnörkellos, auf den Punkt gebracht und doch irgendwie trivial. Mir hat es extrem gut gefallen. Das mag nicht für jeden funktionieren. Ich fand es hervorragend.

 

5 Sterne

The Dark Room – Jonathan Moore

28114424

I am not sure how to rate this book.  I liked reading it and it was entertaining. But there are also some things I did not like.

 

A few months ago I read “The Poison Artist”. Somehow I forgot to review it. I can’t explain why. I think I read it during our vacation and I tend to read books I do not necessarily have to review because I bought them myself. I liked “The Poison Artist”, it was unusual in many ways. The story was quite unique and dark. “The Dark Room” also has also a very dark story even it is not as unique. A beautiful young girl was murdered by bad men after they abused her. Nothing new here. An unexpected confession brings this cold case murder to Inspector Cain’s knowledge. He begins to investigate and slowly the background story reveals itself.

 

The book is more of a slow burner. But the author managed to keep me interested even not much is happening. There is a lot of talking and police work. He is very precise when it is about describing surroundings and other details. But the dialogs are something different. There is a lot of talking but some things stay unsaid. Cain is the main character but we don’t know what he is really thinking.  I felt excluded from some things or even from the story itself. Cain has a girlfriend. She experienced obviously some kind of trauma in her past because she can’t leave the house. This is irritating at first. I felt as if there was something I missed or there was another book I should have read so that I would know about the girlfriend’s problems. We learn later in the book a bit about it. But to me it seemed as if all the characters are only there because otherwise the story would not work. The author seemed not very interested in them. He writes precisely about the crime scenes, the autopsies. Every movement is worth some words, but there is almost nothing about how the characters look or at least what their problem is. Why, for example, is one of the female characters always stripping herself naked in front of Cain? She is troubled, obviously. But why is that so? Ok, at the end I got it. But there was a lack of depth to all the characters. I did not get them, really. You can see how everything happened, how one thing leads to another. But why – the motivation is not that important to the author.

This book is very atmospheric, very dark and sinister. The writing is a mix of precise and imprecise. The main point here is the story and how Cain comes to the conclusion. I considered giving 4 stars because it was a quick read and entertaining on some level. But I had too much problems with the neglected character development. But I must also admit that this book is different. Maybe just because of its flaws. It is weird and strange and worth a look. I liked “The Poison Artist” better. It is similar atmospheric and dark but the story was more unique.

 

3 Stars