Holy Unreliable Narrator Batman! The Woman in Cabin 10 #review

Posted August 11, 2017 by Berls in Review / 16 Comments

Holy Unreliable Narrator Batman! The Woman in Cabin 10 #reviewThe Woman in Cabin 10 by Ruth Ware
Published by Gallery/Scout Press on July 19th 2016
Genres: Thriller, Mystery, Contemporary
Pages: 340
Format: eBook
Source: Purchased
Goodreads
five-stars

In this tightly wound story, Lo Blacklock, a journalist who writes for a travel magazine, has just been given the assignment of a lifetime: a week on a luxury cruise with only a handful of cabins. At first, Lo’s stay is nothing but pleasant: the cabins are plush, the dinner parties are sparkling, and the guests are elegant. But as the week wears on, frigid winds whip the deck, gray skies fall, and Lo witnesses what she can only describe as a nightmare: a woman being thrown overboard. The problem? All passengers remain accounted for—and so, the ship sails on as if nothing has happened, despite Lo’s desperate attempts to convey that something (or someone) has gone terribly, terribly wrong…

With surprising twists and a setting that proves as uncomfortably claustrophobic as it is eerily beautiful, Ruth Ware offers up another intense read.

I have had The Woman in Cabin 10 on my TBR pretty much since it came out. Something about it intrigued me, but not enough to actually pick it up apparently. And then it was one of the books my book club was going to read, so how could I not read it finally? And holy hell, I could have kicked myself for waiting so long!!

One of my favorite things in a book – especially a psychological thriller like this one – is an unreliable narrator. Especially when they’re unreliable for a good reason, not just that they are TSTL. Well, meet Laura – Lo for short. First chapter something incredibly scary happens to her and it shakes her to her core. And then she gets on one of those exclusive 10 cabin cruises for her work 2 days later – sleep deprived, self-medicating on alcohol (which believe me, I so would be too!) and despite clearly being a smart person, she’s suddenly not the most reliable source of information. Is she really seeing what she thinks she’s seeing? Is she the most clever person on board or has she lost it? Even she doesn’t always trust herself, so how can you? And yet I often really wanted to. I was on the edge for pretty much 99% of the book, as each page kept me guessing.

One element that added to the intensity of The Woman in Cabin 10 was the author’s use of flashes forward and to other locations via social media posts, emails and news reports. The flashes always gave you just enough to be like, “wait! What?!”

And to top it off, it ended it with a couple fabulous, unexpected twists that I did not see coming! The writing was really captivating and well, if you haven’t gotten the point yet, I friggin’ loved The Woman in Cabin 10! I can’t recommend it enough!

5 stars Flipping Fantastic

Berls loved the unreliable narrator in The Woman in Cabin 10! 5/5 stars! Click To Tweet

About Berls

Michelle adopted me as part of her blog when I decided to close down my blog, Fantasy is More Fun. The blog was dying, but my love of reading and the blogosphere was still strong as ever - so I found my new home here at Because Reading!

I'm not just a book lover, but a one time author (that hopes to be more in the future), wife, and step-mom to the craziest, sweetest 17 year old on the planet. I also have the privilege of teaching Kindergarten. I love what I do and you can expect it to bleed into my posts. Teaching is a big a part of me as my family and reading. So grab a glass of wine and chat books, blogging, and family with me!

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16 responses to “Holy Unreliable Narrator Batman! The Woman in Cabin 10 #review

    • I haven’t read the audio – but I see several others saying the audio is good, so I bet it’s even better that way 🙂 definitely recommend it!

  1. Oh I’m glad you loved this one! I though ti was amazing! I think I was holding my breath the entire book. I mean I know that’s not possible but it sure felt like it! I loved In a Dark Dark Wood too and now can’t wait for The Lying Game. If you’re in the mood for an audio Imogen Church does the narration for Ware’s books and she’s amazing!
    Katherine recently posted…Top Ten Tuesday – Ten Books for New Mystery ReadersMy Profile

  2. Oh yes, the narrator was really unreliable in this one. I remember that. I personally didn’t like Lo so I knocked off a star, but I am glad to see that you really enjoyed this. Ruth Ware is one of my auto-buy authors because unreliable characters are my favorite and she does them well. Great review!

    • Thanks Karen! You’re not the first person to tell me they didn’t like Lo, so you’re not alone 🙂 Ruth Ware was a new author for me, but she’s on my go-to list now!

  3. I am in the minority as I didn’t like this one. I think the thing you liked was why I didn’t like it. I got so confused with the mainland stuff but I think it’s cause I listened to it so I was like..whoa, wait what just happened, and I was so confused. I think with this author the next one I will try in ebook format.
    Stormi Johnson recently posted…Book Review: Indigo by Charlaine Harris et al.My Profile

    • So for book club there was one person who didn’t like it either and her reason was that she couldn’t stand the main character – rather than seeing her as understandably unreliable, she felt she was acting stupidly. It was the minority opinion, but yeah I could see it being both frustrating and confusing if you weren’t loving the main character and buying into her mental state.
      Berls recently posted…3.5 Star #Review ~ 44 Chapters About 4 Men by B.B. EastonMy Profile

  4. Wow! This sounds like it would be a great movie to watch. I’m not a huge suspense/thriller reader, but I can sometimes watch the movies. I have to laugh we you said “unreliable narrator.” I thought you meant the narration was full of issues, like changing voices or accents, being sad when should be happy, etc. Now I see what you mean – you cannot trust the “narrator” of the story. Great review!
    Jen Twimom recently posted…#FitReaders Check-In: August 11, 2017My Profile

    • lol yeah, in these days of audiobook narrators, I guess that does get confusing, huh? I agree, this would make a fantastic movie! I don’t typically go for thrillers either, but something about this one called to me (maybe the fact that I love cruises?) – I do definitely prefer the psychological thriller to horror though, I can manage it much better for some reason. Fingers crossed they make this into a movie sometime!
      Berls recently posted…3.5 Star #Review ~ 44 Chapters About 4 Men by B.B. EastonMy Profile

  5. Ha I laughed when I saw the title on your post! And so true- I loved how unreliable she was! Those flash forwards did totally screw with me too- I was like what??? I liked the ending as well, especially when she got on land and they were coming back- I was like RUN RUN RUN lol.

    I just read her new one The Lying Game and it’s good also!
    Greg recently posted…Runaways Vol. 5 Escape To New YorkMy Profile

    • Lol I know! I was on the edge of my seat when she made it to land, “no, don’t tell them who you are!” “crap, run!” just a couple of the things I said 🙂 I’ll have to check out The Lying Game, since I enjoyed this so much!

    • Yeah I will be reading way more of Ruth Ware, that’s for sure 🙂 unreliable narrators can make all the difference – it sure did in this book!

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