Audiobook Review: A Slow Fire Burning by Paula Hawkins

“What is wrong with you?”

The 2021 book by Paula Hawkins, A Slow Fire Burning follows three women. Laura has spent most of her life being judged. She’s seen as hot-tempered, troubled, a loner. Some even call her dangerous. Miriam knows that just because Laura is witnessed leaving the scene of a horrific murder with blood on her clothes, that doesn’t mean she’s a killer. Bitter experience has taught her how easy it is to get caught in the wrong place at the wrong time. Carla is reeling from the brutal murder of her nephew. She trusts no one: good people are capable of terrible deeds. But how far will she go to find peace? Innocent or guilty, everyone is damaged. Some are damaged enough to kill.


Thank you to Penguin Random House for a free audiobook copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

After loving The Girl On The Train, I was excited to read Paula Hawkins latest. Most definitely a slow-burning thriller, A Slow Fire Burning is a cleverly plotted and anger-fuelled story of jealousy, revenge and deceit.

The audiobook is narrated by Rosamund Pike who I’m a fan of already, and she has the perfect voice to narrate this thriller. She ensures that each of the three females has a distinctive voice and adds a fitting personality to their narratives.

Each of the three women seems responsible at one point or another and I couldn’t pin it either way.
However, because each narrative is so unreliable, I did struggle to connect with the characters, which is the only thing that prevented me from loving this one more.

The Girl On The Train had me absolutely hooked from the beginning, while A Slow Fire Burning definitely takes a while longer to pull you in. But although the book does begin quite slowly, I listened to the audiobook over two days and was eager for answers.

The revelations towards the end are full of twists and tension, and it certainly pays off to wait for the connections to come together. It is a little complex at times and would definitely benefit from a second listen (as I find it’s easier to miss things when listening rather than reading), but I’m more than willing to do that to get even more out of it.

If you’re a fan of Paula Hawkins or like a mainstream thriller, this is definitely one that you’ll want to pick up.


A Slow Fire Burning by Paula Hawkins
Release Date: 2nd September 2021
Print Length: 320 pages
Genre: Psychological Thriller
Publisher: Penguin Random House

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