Friday, 4 August 2017

Review: Are You Sleeping By Kathleen Barber

Serial meets Ruth Ware’s In A Dark, Dark Wood in this inventive and twisty psychological thriller about a mega-hit podcast that reopens a murder case—and threatens to unravel the carefully constructed life of the victim’s daughter.

The only thing more dangerous than a the truth.

Josie Buhrman has spent the last ten years trying to escape her family’s reputation and with good reason. After her father's murder thirteen years prior, her mother ran away to join a cult and her twin sister Lanie, once Josie’s closest friend and confidant, betrayed her in an unimaginable way. Now, Josie has finally put down roots in New York, settling into domestic life with her partner Caleb, and that’s where she intends to stay. The only problem is that she has lied to Caleb about every detail of her past—starting with her last name.

When investigative reporter Poppy Parnell sets off a media firestorm with a mega-hit podcast that reopens the long-closed case of Josie’s father’s murder, Josie’s world begins to unravel. Meanwhile, the unexpected death of Josie’s long-absent mother forces her to return to her Midwestern hometown where she must confront the demons from her past—and the lies on which she has staked her future.

Hardcover, 336 pages
Expected publication: August 1st 2017 by Gallery Books
Genre: Mystery/Thriller
Kristine's Thoughts:

** I received an advanced readers copy from Simon & Schuster Canada in exchange for an honest review. Thank you!**

Josie had a new life far away from the one of her past. She didn't want to remember the murder of her father or how her mother abandoned her for a cult. She really didn't want to remember the betrayal of her twin sister Lanie. When a new and popular podcast called Reconsidered started re-examining her Father's murder her whole world was turned upside down.

In a way this reminded me a recent Netflix series that was all the rave. Opinions and facts were brought forward that had everyone convinced that the wrong person was convicted of the crime. In the case of this book it wasn't a television series but a podcast. The host dug into the past making everyone question the events of that horrific night.

Told through Josie's point of view, excerpts from the podcast, Twitter and other social media outlets, the story began to unfold. What did I think you ask?

I was really enjoying the entire mystery aspect of the story. Was it the young neighbour that committed that brutal crime or was it someone else? I thoroughly enjoyed how it was presented in the book through the different outlets. Josie was beginning to have questions and doubts and so was I. Normally I pride myself in figuring it out early on and although I did eventually get there before it was revealed it did take me a little longer than usual. I kept going back and forth between two different theories.

The one area that I have to say I wasn't one hundred percent satisfied with was the relationship between Josie and Lanie. Being a twin myself, I understand fully the deep connection that comes with that. I guess I felt like the betrayal and the resolve were a little on the weak side. The conflict resolution was way too anti climatic for my liking. I craved more of a story where the twins were concerned.

In the end this book kept me guessing which in turn kept the pages turning. I found the story interesting and the use of the different outlets to tell the story refreshing. Although I felt like the relationship between the twins lacked a little something it wasn't enough to deter me from enjoying the story. I thought it was a solid read.

About the Author
Kathleen Barber was raised in Galesburg, Illinois. She graduated from the University of Illinois and Northwestern University School of Law, and previously practiced bankruptcy law at large firms in Chicago and New York. When she’s not writing, Kathleen enjoys traveling the world with her husband.

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