Books for Breakfast #74

Book Reviews

This time I read:
The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins
A Scanner Darkly by Philip K. Dick
This was the NovelTea book club book for the month and I read this one pretty dang fast! I love murder mysteries and I loved this one even more because I love unreliable narrators even more! Although, I must say….what is up with the whole mystery solvers must be drunk with bad pasts/bad current situations. For example, I feel like every mystery book I read has the tall dark and handsome cop/ex-cop/detective that has a drinking problem (or some other vice) and struggles with his/her past or current situation while somehow managing to solve the crime at hand. It’s the oldest cliche in the book. That’s probably my only qualm with this book. Why must she be a drunk? 
Aside from that, the story was great! My favorite part of these is guessing who the killer is. I guessed right the first time and then changed my guess to someone else, although my first instinct was totally spot on! I loved the slow reveals, where as you read things start falling into place and you have a bunch of “Ah haaaah!! Now I seeeee!” moments while you go through the story. I’m also a fan of the switching perspectives, as in each chapter is from the point of view of a different lady in the story. I did hate the only lady, even in the end, I just didn’t like her character at all. She was that type of person that just rubbed me the wrong way the entire time. (You know the one, we all have that type)
The characters are great (if not a little cliched), the murder is freaky, and it’s one wild ride! I really enjoyed the book and I can see why everyone has been making a fuss over it! I’m glad it was in the book club!
This book was stuck on my shelf by Alex, who had read it quite a while ago. I haven’t read anything by Philip K. Dick before although I have heard of Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep, which is probably the book everyone has heard of because the movie Bladerunner is based off of it. Although, for all who don’t know: A Scanner Darkly has a movie version as well! I haven’t seen it, but now that Alex and I have both read it, we are a little curious and plan to watch the movie if we can find it anywhere. 
So the book tells the story of a man who is an under cover agent trying to find the source of one of the most addictive and dangerous drugs on the market called Substance D. The cast of characters is a bit crazy, I mean, they are all junkies and by junkies I mean they are on A LOT of different and terrible drugs. It’s another book with some unreliable narrator themes in it. Near the end though, it really picks up and you just sit there with a shocked expression on your face as all the facts are laid out for you. The ending sorta slaps you in the face. 
It’s hard to like any of the characters in the way that you don’t really know who you can trust and they all seem rather unhinged. I mean, this is all about addicts of Substance D, a drug that beyond messes with your brain! I enjoyed the book though, it was interesting to watch the events unfold as you wonder the same questions as the undercover agent, like: Where is this stuff coming from? Who can I trust in this house? Who is out to get me? I’m curious to see how the movie will go though, after reading the book. I don’t know how well certain parts will transfer to the big screen. 
Next on my list:
All the Bright Places (The Reader’s Choice winner!) & Blood on Snow

By Jess

A bookworm since the tender age of whenever I stopped chewing on books and started actually reading them. A cat-mom, graphic designer, and introvert originally from Pittsburgh, but now resides in the humid, hot, state of Texas. Cheers!

  • I saw the movie of A Scanner Darkly. I want to read the book sometime, but the way you described the ending was pretty similar for me with the movie. Since then I just haven't really felt ready to go through the story again, hahah! You'll have to let us know what you think of the movie! It used to be on Netflix Instant…not sure if it still is!

  • I'm curious about All the Bright Places, hope you like it!