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Ratings and Book Reviews (12 30 star ratings
12 reviews

Overall rating

4.3 out of 5
5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star
18 6 4 2 0

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    Let it all be a dream

    2.5 Stars Oh dear, this turned in to a jumbled mess quite early on in proceedings. It starts off quite well with introducing us to Anna and you get a good sense of the character in both her professional and personal life. When the accident happens that steals the lives of Freddy and Peter and leaves Mohammed severely injured the description of Anna's reaction is well handled and believable. I could even get behind her mental collapse and seeming paranoia after her release from hospital, attending the funerals and then the Court Case. When her relationship with Alex collapses and she moves back home to her parents I am still "with it" but finding myself having to suspend belief in parts. This is then compounded when she moves to the remote Scottish Island of Rum to get away from everything and start a new job as a Hotel Receptionist cum general factotum. It is once we get to Rum that the book really started to fall apart for me. Not one of the characters have any real depth to them and they all have just a sheen of personality to them. Each and every one of them fits in to a particular niche which gives them a plausible reason for being Anna's tormentor. Unfortunately because of their very generic attributes this means that as soon as they have all settled in to the hotel and the storm hits you know that the least likely candidate is going to be the one responsible. Sadly, it wasn't even really fun getting to the denouement that proved the reader right. It would seem that the author realised this as there is a side story of Freddy's father thrown in that it seems is behind her torment. Throw in a handful of peculiar obituaries and comments from their writer directed towards both the deceased and Anna. All add up to a nice little distraction, but not a truly effective one as although at first they do serve to cast suspicion in other directions they, ultimately, just serve as break points in the action on Rum. I was very disappointed with the book as the pace varied between a slow plod and then frantic, fevered activity. Not always a bad thing but in this case the frantic bits didn't create tension but instead came across as overwrought and, to be honest, rather laughable. With the exception of Anna none of the characters are particularly believable and even Anna eventually becomes a caricature of herself. So, between plot, pacing and characters there isn't a lot to recommend the book and once you are around 100 pages or so in it just became an exercise in getting to the end of it all. Normally when there is so much going on, and there is a LOT going on, I find that it sucks you in and really involves you in the story being told. In this case it just seems like everything, including the kitchen sink, has been thrown at the book and it just left it muddy and rather boring. There is so much hyperbole on the cover that it made me wonder if I was reading the right pages or if another book had been substituted between the covers. THIS AN HONEST REVIEW OF A FREE COPY OF THE BOOK RECEIVED VIA READERS FIRST.
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    I feel a bit misled by all the glowing reviews. Sleep is an OK read as long as you're happy to switch your brain off for a couple of hours. The pacing is good, and the overall concept is fun, but the editing is poor, and the two 'twists' feel forced - as if they're there to fit the market, and only to fit the market (the first one is a complete mess.) In general, it feels massively overhyped by the marketing bods. There's little depth to any of the characters, and little plausibility to any of the events. Fun if you want a bit of fluff, but it's no five-star thriller.
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    Keeps you hooked throughout

    After a serious car crash Anna is struggling to sleep; she feels guilty and paranoid that someone is after her for what she has done. She moves to the remote island of Rum to make a fresh start and forget all of her troubles – but have they followed her there? I really enjoyed The Fear by CL Taylor last year and was very excited about her latest offering – Sleep. I certainly was not disappointed! Sleep is a great Thriller which, ironically enough keeps you up all night trying to figure out what is going on! It’s a great standalone read and one that will keep you hooked throughout. I really loved the claustrophobic air of the remote island of Rum – it made for a great setting and really heightened the tension throughout. I liked the fact we started with the backstory of the crash and that the chapters also occasionally alternated between other characters, including the perpetrator. I also particularly loved the red herring (no spoilers) that this produced. The theme of not getting any sleep, the quotes used and the notes that turn up were also a nice way to keep the title of the book in your thoughts and establish the through-line of the book. The only thing I think made it slightly less impactful than the previous books I have read was that the twist didn’t quite have as much of a punch as I was expecting. As the suspect list on the island is relatively small, you end up just whittling down suspects until you are left with just one possible person and then it was revealed who it was. It still surprised me but had it arrived a little earlier in the narrative I think it might have had more of an impact. Overall I’m sure, like me, that you will lose Sleep enjoying Sleep and working out its twists and turns. Thank you to NetGalley and Avon Books UK for the chance to read the ARC in exchange for an honest review.
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    400 pages read.....just like that! Yep 400 pages whizzed past me without me even recognising how many pages were in this latest book of CL Taylor’s. I opened the book after studying the cover (like you do) and wondered what relevance and connection, if any, would be within these pages. Well, you soon find out. The beginning of the story makes me feel for Anna. She was the driver of the car that killed two people, one injured. I couldn’t help but think and feel for her. To blame yourself is the first human instinct, she was at the wheel. She had her passengers lives and other road users in the palm of her hands. We all do. As soon as we take that wheel and start to drive...... But someone feels that justice has not been mete out. Anna is plagued by terrible insomnia, she doesn’t sleep well and if she does she wakes up terrified. Anna needs to get a grip so she finds a job on a remote island in Scotland. There are all types of characters that come to stay and we learn that each one is not who they seem to be. It’s edgy, it’s thrilling and it’s full of suspense. The reader really gets pulled into the story at an alarming rate, and with such penship as this author writes you can help but feel everything, be right where the characters are staying, imagine yourself as part of this plot. She really has such a way of twirling and entwining the reader, luring you into each sentence, each narration. It’s hard to explain, but her descriptive writing just plonks you into the middle of it all. If the person is terrified, then I am. If the person is hiding and it’s creepy, then so am I, holding my breath so I can’t be heard. That’s the only way I can discribe this authors writing. Many times I was holding my breath. One time was when Anna was searching rooms I was right there as a watch out for her. If she heard a creep on the stairs I’m biting my nails saying “quick....hurry....hide....don’t get caught” I kid you not. I was so invested in this plot I forgot all time and heard my sons alarm clock ring to get him out of bed and go to work. The only book I’ve not read yet is Treatment. I plan to read this over Christmas. Thank you publishers for sending me an early copy. This does not influence my review or thought. I anticipate every book this author writes.
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    This is Cally's best book to date, it is atmospheric, twisty, you change your mind about the characters from chapter to chapter and Sleep you will not. You will not be able to put it down until you've finished it!

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