78. Sleep by C. L. Taylor

I decided to read this one first from my Kindle Haul as it was calling out to me the most and, wow! It was amazing!

Synopsis (as taken from the Amazon Kindle Store) is as follows:

Seven guests. Seven secrets. One killer. Do you dare to sleep?

All Anna wants is to be able to sleep. But crushing insomnia, terrifying night terrors and memories of that terrible night are making it impossible. If only she didn’t feel so guilty.

To escape her past, Anna takes a job at a hotel on the remote Scottish island of Rum, but when seven guests join her, what started as a retreat from the world turnings into a deadly nightmare.

Each of the guests have a secret, but one of them is lying – about who they are and why they’re on the island. There’s a murderer staying in the Bay View Hotel. And they’ve set their sights on Anna.

Seven strangers. Seven secrets. One deadly lie.

Ability to read – I had no issue with reading this book. The language of the book was very smooth flowing and easy to understand. I was captivated by the plot from the beginning and throughout reading felt that I got a good scope of the characters and their environment. The book kept me guessing, I didn’t twig who it was until it was reveal to me.

Characterisation – I have random episodes of insomnia and I haven’t gone through what Anna did, but it made me sympathise with her more because I had a personal connection. Anna was an easy character to like and a character who you wanted to stand up to. I felt her anxiety as she did, felt her desperation and fear. Felt her confusion and worry. She was a character that got under my skin in terms of her vulnerability. I wanted to see where her story went and keep her protected as she went. The seven strangers of the hotel were fully formed and deep in their character backgrounds. I found myself constantly changing my theories on them and wondering with each turn of the page, who the guilty culprit was. The chapters in the mysterious murderers point of view were chilling and sent shivers down my spine but I still couldn’t work out who the guilty party was. The characters, especially Anna, made me think a lot and focus on coincidences and how our brains link them together in paranoia and fear.

Visualisation – I found this easy to visualise, the book was rich in detail and I was able to form a clear picture of what was happening. I have never been to Scotland – but hopefully will visit one day – so any information I had about Rum was taken from the internet, but it helped me to visualise the island Anna was on. My visualisation of the characters changed and shifted as the story progressed, their actions made them appear clearer in my mind, and their shifting looks didn’t hinder my visualisation of what was happening.

Uniqueness – I loved this book! It took me about 3 hours to read it because it was one of those books that I couldn’t break away from. I wanted to finish it as soon as I had started to read it. I really enjoy crime novels where I don’t guess who the murderer is, so this was a complete win for me. I enjoyed the amount of guesswork I had to do to try – and fail – to work out who the guilty party was. I enjoyed the journey that Anna went on and the myriad of emotions she felt while on her journey. This book was unique to me in the way that the character was focused on paranoia and fear and how she functions with those emotions and her insomnia. I thought the story was quite unique and told in an interesting and original way.

Star Rating – ★★★★★

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