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Paula Hawkins: Who starts the fire

Paula Hawkins’ novel “Girl On The Train”, made into a film with Emily Blunt, has sold 23 million times. Now, the author’s third book, “Wer das Feuer Kindle”, came onto the market. It tells of a murder that connects the fates of several emotionally injured women.

Hawkins put a lot of weight into her characters and narrative style, the plot is less convincing. Location London: The battered body of a man is found on a houseboat on Regent’s Canal.

Did his last one-night stand kill him? Or his boat “neighbor” who removed evidence from the crime scene? And then there is the victim’s bitter aunt and her ex-husband, who both have motives. Hawkins packs a family drama and the stories of suffering of women in her crime thriller, shaped by losses, humiliations and unresolved traumas.

The story is told chapter by chapter alternately from the perspective of the main characters, in flashbacks the past is rolled up. You can quickly find your way around the plot, the seemingly complicated structure is ultimately based on a very simple story. “Who starts the fire” is consistently gloomy. The figures have many facets, but are easy to see through. Apparently Hawkins wanted to write a disturbing noir thriller, but he didn’t want to scare off mainstream audiences.

Paula Hawkins: Who starts the fire. Blanvalet Verlag, 416 pages, 20.60 euros

Arjun Sethi
Passionate guitarist, gamer and writer. Lives for the perfect review, and scrapes texts until they are razor-sharp.


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