Book Review: This Is the Water*

image– Yannick Murphy

Annie is a self confessed swim-mom, and her time is mostly spent at swim training and swim meets with her two daughters. The rest of her time is spent worrying about whether she’s feeding her girls the right foods for training; why all romance has disappeared between her and Thomas, her husband; and why she’s still mulling over her brother’s suicide.

With everything going on in the swimming centre, no one notices the dark haired man watching the girls. When a girl is murdered everything changes for the parents of the swim girls.

“With a serial killer now too close for comfort, Annie and her fellow swim-parents must make choices about where their loyalties lie. As a series of startling events unfold, Annie discovers what it means to follow your intuition, even if love, as well as lives, could be lost.”

My thoughts:

This is the story of Annie as she struggles with the death of her brother, a marriage that isn’t going anywhere and those feelings that she’s suddenly having about her friend’s husband, Paul. This is Chris, Paul’s wife, obsessed with finding the killer. This is Paul, confessing a secret to Annie which could have helped find a murderer 20 something years ago. This is Annie, not being able to forget those details and worrying that this same killer is back.

This Is the Water – a book written in a very strange format! (I struggled writing the above, how an earth did Yannick Murphy manage to write a whole book?!) It is written in second person all the way through, with a lot of the sentences beginning with ‘this is’, if you didn’t already guess from my above paragraph… It took me a while to get used to, and I’m still not convinced that I really enjoyed reading in this narrative, but it sure did make the book stand out!

The book pretty much revolves around a swim team, and there’s a lot of information about swim techniques, swim sessions so if you’re not interested in this it may bore you! I thought the story started quite slow, and I guess followed through quite slowly too, but I was interested throughout. If you’re looking for a good thriller type mystery then I’d say this isn’t for you. It kind of felt like the murderer was just a side plot, and wasn’t really a big focal point, which was weird I guess. Like I said though, I was interested throughout the story and I read a fair bit on my bus journey to Manchester earlier this week!

I wasn’t expecting the ending to be honest, and it was kind of disappointing for me. I was hoping for some big sort of stand off and it just wasn’t like that at all! That said, I was happy with the ending.

I feel like this sounds like a bad review, but I did like this book! It was just so different to what I expected and so different to any other crime/mystery/thriller book that I’ve read. I’d recommend it just for that, although I don’t think the writing style will appeal to everyone. To conclude, This Is the Water was a little bit strange with a narrative that really stands out, and that alone is a reason to read it in my opinion!

My Rating – To see my book review rating guide click here.

*Thanks to Bookbridgr for the review copy!