This is part of a blog tour with Red Door Publishing.
Tubing is a mystery and thriller novel by K.A. McKeagney.
After a chance encounter with a mysterious man on a tube train, Polly’s mundane London life is turned upside down. The man leaves before she finds out his name, and so Polly becomes desperate to see him again. As she does so, she discovers the underground phenomenon ‘Tubing’, where complete strangers organise illicit sexual encounters on commuter tube trains, but doesn’t realise she’s placing herself in danger.
Tubing is marketed as a thriller. I thought it was a thriller.
There’s also a lot of sex. A lot.
I’d never heard of ‘tubing’ before this book – it’s a rather weird phenomenon (sorry) and I sincerely hope it isn’t real – so for me, the sex scenes didn’t add anything.
Excluding the gratuitous sex scenes, Tubing was easy to read, and I thought the pacing was well-balanced.
Polly’s characterisation was also well-layered; we learn different things about her background such as her struggles with an eating disorder and the way her cruel, hypochondriac mother treats her – I loved this, it reminded me of Camille’s mother from Sharp Objects by Gillian Flynn.
I really liked how Polly became more paranoid and suspicious of those around her as the novel progressed. It makes you wonder how much is happening in real life, and how much is simply happening inside her head.
However, I didn’t like Charlotte’s character. She was meant to be a bit snobbish and a bit devious, but I wasn’t convinced by her motivations – she felt like a weaker or unclear character.
Suddenly, Tubing moves from sex to thriller; there is an increasing number of mysterious deaths and possible suicides along the tube lines Polly normally travels. The theme of suicide here was eye-opening and shocking. Suicide on the tubes is a traumatic – and very real – issue and some of McKeagney’s descriptions were more graphic than I anticipated.
When the connections between the events on the London Underground and Polly’s own life were finally revealed, they were a good shock.
The ending was also justified, enjoyable, and satisfying.
I did enjoy the thriller moments of Tubing but I didn’t like that the premise was built around sex with strangers. I probably should have researched the book better beforehand!
Star Rating: 4/5 Stars
Tubing is available to buy as a paperback on Amazon UK from May 2018.