Cover Image: Across the Water

Across the Water

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Member Reviews

I absolutely loved this psychological thriller by Ingrid Alexandra. I could picture the area and characters perfectly and think Delilah looks like Clare Bowditch!! I loved the suspense and uncertainty of this story. Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for my digital copy. I couldn't put this book down!!
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Liz and Adam have had a whirlwind courtship and marriage, now they have travelled from England to settle Adam’s father’s estate in Australia. Unfortunately for Liz, this happens to be in an isolated spot on the river with few neighbours and a convoluted way to get to the nearest town. While Adam commutes each day to the city for work, Liz occupies her time by watching the neighbours across the river.
This book appears to have mixed reviews. I quite enjoyed it and found it a quick read in essence, 
although I enjoyed the first half of the book more, maybe it was the character setup. There are three narrators, with Liz being the main one, this was all easy to follow. With Liz experiencing a traumatic event within her work prior to moving to Australia, the reader is aware that she may be an unreliable narrator and slowly details of this is revealed.
Overall an easy read that had a satisfying conclusion.
Thank to Netgalley and the publisher for a copy to read.
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This was a slow burn psychological thriller. I enjoyed reading it, but I found it predictable and quite slow at times. 

Thank you to the publisher for providing me with a copy of this E-book to review via Netgalley.
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I chose to read this book because (even though it makes me shallow) it had a fabulous cover. The blurb made it sound interesting too. What I didn’t realise until later was that it was written by Ingrid Alexandra whose first book, The New Girl, was not one of my favourites last year. And, unfortunately, this book won’t be going on my favourites list any time soon either.

After three weeks of marriage, Liz and Adam come to Australia from England to put Adam’s recently passed father’s house on the market. Adam goes off to work in Sydney most days, leaving Liz, who is suffering from PTSD following a tragedy at her workplace, at the house where she spends her days spying on the neighbours who live across the water (the water in question being a creek running between their houses and Adam's fathers). The neighbours, Dee and her baby, Erica and her hubby, and single ladies man, Zac, are in clear view and Liz interprets scenes, assuming tension between them regularly. Then, Dee goes missing and Liz starts to suspect, of course, foul play.

I had many questions regarding the plot.

Why does Liz hate Australia so much, especially when she’s been here a mere couple of days? Why does Liz complain about being isolated when she is so close to other people, she can literally see into their houses? Why does Liz whinge about being in the middle of nowhere and yet be so close to Sydney that it's possible for Adam to commute there for work? Why would a woman who has been married for only three weeks be showing such an interest in another man (that seven year itch is now about seven days apparently)? Why does Liz, from England, get so cold all the time? And then why does Liz say it’s not even cold just a few chapters later? Why does no one seem to know that Adam’s father had passed away? Why does Liz not see the police or SES across the water when Dee goes missing? Why is there no media across the water when Dee goes missing? Why does Liz hate our native birds so? Why are plovers suddenly a rare bird of Australia? Why do I have so many questions?

I had questions as to the actual layout of the creek and the houses. There was a bridge between the houses, but then sometimes the bridge was under water and Liz needed to use a boat to get across the creek and I don’t even know…

I question Alexandra's decision to use multiple narrators. Liz and Dee and Erica all ended up sounding exactly the same, despite them supposedly being different ages, for starters. Alexandra really really should have just stuck with Liz’s POV.

I question why Alexandra jumped around in the timeline. I would question whether or not anyone would take any notice of the actual dates. Just present tense and flashbacks would have sufficed.

I have questions about everyone's unhealthy relationship with alcohol in Alexandra's books. Yes, everyone was drunk all the time in The New Girl and all the characters are again borderline alcoholics. And, again, like in the New Girl, no one stops drinking even when they’re pregnant/breastfeeding/on prescription drugs etc. WTF.

There is no question about the fact that I would be loath to race out and try anymore of Alexandra’s books but, to give ‘constructive’ criticism (in inverted commas as I question whether there really is such a thing as constructive criticism and wonder if it is simply criticism), I think she needs to stick with writing younger characters. Every character in this book sounded no older than 22 or so anyway. I would also say she needs to start writing more likeable characters. For two books now I haven’t really cared about her leads or their woes, real and imagined. And thirdly, I would suggest she gets an editor. Or at least one who will keep everything straight, point out plot holes, and be willing to make changes. This book could have been okay if the editors/publishers were less indulgent.

I did like the cover...

1 1/2, maybe 2 out of 5
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Ingrid Alexandra sets the scene beautifully for this tense psychological thriller. 
Oyster Creek, remote Australian town, a house only accessible by boat and a woman left alone. 
The woman is Liz Dawson and, with little to do and a lot on her mind she passes the time watching the houses across the creek. The glimpses she sees through the curtains and the passing comments of the townsfolk bring her to some unsettling conclusions- but is she a reliable narrator?
We learn things about her past that make us begin to wonder...
A gripping book with a satisfying end.
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