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No Sleep Till Wonderland (Mark Genevich #2)

3.53  ·  Rating Details ·  238 Ratings  ·  40 Reviews
Mark Genevich, narcoleptic detective, is caught between friends and a police investigation in this wickedly riveting PI novel with a twist—a follow-up to The Little Sleep

Mark Genevich is stuck in a rut: his narcolepsy isn't improving, his private-detective business is barely scraping by, and his landlord mother is forcing him to attend group therapy sessions. Desperate fo
Paperback, 288 pages
Published February 2nd 2010 by St. Martin's Griffin (first published 2010)
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May 04, 2015 John rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
First of all: this book does NOT stand alone -- one must read The Little Sleep first for context.

That book gave an idea of Mark's life, with hints of (allusions to) how he got there. This one shows how dysfunctional his life really is, without all that running around on the Cape and such for distraction. As the story opens, Mark's in group therapy, involuntarily as his mother has threatened to pull the plug on subsidizing him otherwise. Echoes of Hildy from The Good House was how that opening st
William Thomas
Oct 02, 2010 William Thomas rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: crime, meh, blah
You're writing a book. You want to sell it. Can't sell it on literary merit because there really isn't any? No problem. Invent a character quirk that you can work into the novel to lure the publishing companies in. Give them something they can put on the back of the jacket to catch the reader and force them to buy the book if for no other reason than to see how this inane premise will work out.

This book? Give your character narcolepsy and then have him talk about it ad nauseum to fill space in y
Mar 15, 2010 Electric rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-in-2010, crime
I have a soft spot for broken personalities and a narcoleptic PI is robably as broken as you can get without overdoing it. Tremblay does a great job of portraying believable characters and that is a hell of a job if you work within a genre that it as ripe with clichè as the noir crime novel. The plot is good and keeps you guessing but the real appeal of the book comes from the witty dialogue of the PI with the other characters and most of all with himself. He is struggling constantly with social ...more
Feb 12, 2010 Jessica rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-in-2010

Modernizing the archetypal hardboiled detective story, Paul Tremblay mixes surrealism with traditional noir in his novel No Sleep till Wonderland. A conceptual twist on the genre amplifies conventional crime fiction and explores the mysterious power of the human mind.

Tremblay first introduced browbeaten South Boston private investigator Mark Genevich in 2009’s The Little Sleep. Mark is barely scraping by after a botched case and an unrelenting struggle wit
Joshua Buhs
Aug 24, 2016 Joshua Buhs rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: crime
Like being trapped at a party by a bore.

I mean, you'd rather not have this guy--of course it's a guy--rattling on. But at least your at a party! There's chips; there's beer.

I've been reading Tremblay's novels in reverse order, which is always questionable. I can see some the same themes recurring, of course, and the development of certain techniques. He uses these to great effect in his most recent two novels. This, his second novel, not so much: it's still a work in progress.

As I understand it,
M.L. Rio
Jan 08, 2013 M.L. Rio rated it it was ok
While still entertaining, I didn't enjoy this book as much as the first one. The conflicts between characters were never really clear - even at the end. The 'bad guy' of the story only makes a real appearance in one short scene and his personality is paper thin. The biggest problem though is that nothing's actually on the line for the protagonist. The problems are all other people's problems, and he has literally no personal stake in the case. He doesn't lose anything by not solving it - and it' ...more
Feb 22, 2013 Pariah325 rated it liked it
A decent story and good use of language. Two things distracted me and forced me to give it a lower rating.
1. The narrator is a smart-ass and a comparison freak. WAY too many metaphors and similes, over-used and sometimes they lasted for multiple sentences. One that sticks out: "We creeped up I street like a couple of creeps." Yeah...
2. I spent the first 100 pages trying to figure out if the two main characters were romantically interested in one-another. Then, when one of them expressed some in
Jan 07, 2016 Mark rated it really liked it
Because the narrator and main character, Mark Genevich, has narcolepsy and is prone to cataleptic seizures where he experiences everything in a fugue state, there are elements of magical realism throughout. The narcolepsy results in gaps in his story, so the reader has to fill in the blanks. I was glad to do that when reading this book, although I haven't liked it in some other books. The wit of the author shines through on every page.

There were some glaring grammatical errors and some unnecess
Nov 10, 2009 Mairi rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2010
The Genevich books give me much of what I love about Marlowe, Spade, and the Continental Op without the lip-curling, recoil-inducing elements that makes it hard for me to remember the time period in which they were written and read them in context.

I enjoy the wit, the banter, the slowly unfolding twists and turns, and his imperfections. As I read it, I found myself sharing passages and dog-earring pages containing bits that I especially liked.
Nov 28, 2010 Scotchneat rated it liked it
Shelves: outcasts, mystery
What do you do when you're a narcoleptic detective and a friend of yours takes you on a two-day bender, and then asks you for a favour.

Pretty dark but quite funny at times, though the "hard-boiled" detective wit is a bit forced at times.

Weirdly has some remnants of Jonathan Lethem for me, but not sure why.
May 10, 2010 Ellen rated it liked it
I enjoyed this a lot, although it's not as startling as the first volume (often a problem with sequels to strong novels).
Sep 27, 2009 Mark rated it it was amazing
A detective story that is the perfect cross between Kafka and Chandler. Crazy, scary, and flat out fun.
Dec 02, 2014 Jani rated it liked it
So I thought this was interesting. Kind of like Silver Linings Playbook in that you get to see inside the thoughts of someone with mental health issues. But then add a murder mystery.

Oct 09, 2011 Jeff rated it really liked it
This is a great book. And I say that upfront because I'm about to dump all over it.

This book is incredibly pretentious. From the title alluding to Raymond Chandler's classic The Big Sleep and Lewis Carroll's Alice and Wonderland, to the rampant metaphors throughout the text, and even to the reviews on the back attempting to portray the book as serious literature rather than a simple mystery, No Sleep till Wonderland doesn't stop acting holier than thou but it never quite achieves the status to
Apr 13, 2016 Corielle rated it liked it
Paul Tremblay's follow up to The Little Sleep, No Sleep Till Wonderland definitely improved upon the first. Once again, we follow our narcoleptic narrator -- P.I. Mark Genevich -- as he stumbles around Boston, trying to solve a crime.

“I swoon into a standing eight count. Goddamn, I actually feel my consciousness want to detach and hide like a turtle retreating into a hopelessly soft shell that won't save anyone.”

In this novel, Mark has already pretty much blown through any goodwill that the pub
Matt Smith
Apr 25, 2014 Matt Smith rated it really liked it
Shelves: humor, mystery-crime
A private investigator should have good common sense, quick reasoning, and constant focus, to name a few. Mark Genevich has none of these in spades. It's the narcolepsy. Or the severe hallucinations. Or just South Boston.

Stuck in group therapy as his mother's requisite for footing his near-belly up PI business, Mark passes his conscious time botching simple follow-the-subject-and-report-back cases. That is until he's coaxed into drinks with a fellow group member, agrees to stake out the guys's f
Apr 08, 2010 Christine rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2010-reads
In this follow up book to THE LITTLE SLEEP we revisit Mark Genevich the narcoleptic P.I. After coupling his landlord mother forcing him to go into therapy, his P.I. business not meeting his expectations and his ongoing battle with his narcolepsy Mark decides to go on a two day bender. Coming out of the bender Mark finds himself a suspect in a arson/murder investigation. The first book was unique because it threw a twist into the typical P.I. genre read. Although this follow up still has the sarc ...more
Feb 23, 2010 Emily rated it liked it
Shelves: mysteries
I started out really enjoying this book, and I don't think it mattered much that I haven't yet read The Little Sleep: A Novel. I was intrigued by the covering of narcolepsy, the wandering in and out of consciousness, and the narration somewhere a cross between Hammett and Palahniuk. Points for plot. Along the way though I got tired of the excessive simile and metaphor, the quirky little quips that became more hey-I'm-clever-for-the-sake-of-being-clever than actually being witty, and the distinct ...more
Jan 13, 2016 Jack rated it really liked it
Paul Tremblay's narcoleptic detective is back, but in this book he progresses farther from his satirical hardboiled roots. The Little Sleep was a twist up of the quintessential hardboiled detective novel. This particular book's plot starts feeling a lot more like modern crime fiction than its predecessor. This isn't a bad thing. It creates a nice tension between modern crime writing and its PI roots. I enjoyed it a lot. The writing is very good, but you don't expect anything less from Tremblay. ...more
Dec 24, 2016 Drew rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a good detective story, with an interesting twist: the main character, a private investigator, has narcolepsy, along with a few other problems, mental and physical. As you can imagine, narcolepsy makes it challenging to be a PI. The main character is a real smart-aleck, the secondary characters are well written, the story is interesting, and the dialogue is sharp and authentic. I'm going to read the first book in the series (The Little Sleep) to get caught up.
Michael X
May 29, 2015 Michael X rated it it was ok
Even though I'm mostly enjoying this book, it doesn't take much to take my attention away from it. Therefore progress is slow.
Here's a spin on the old how do you tell if a person you just met is a vegetarian? riddle. OK? How do you tell if someone you just met suffers from narcolepsy?
ANSWER: You wait about 5 mins and they will tell you!
Without exaggeration the writer mentions the n-word 276 times through the book, or on almost every page.
Also since when was the protagonist a gay guy? Nothing wro
Apr 14, 2014 Jordan rated it did not like it
Shelves: to-acquire
Really bad follow up to a pretty good original story. Somehow the author stopped making me care about Mark the Narcoleptic. The book was joyless and devoid of humor, which is unfortunate since the opposite was true of the first book.

I decided I was done with this story when we got to the fumblingly bad sex scene. It made me laugh out loud because it was so out of place, unnecessary, and poorly done -- it suggested the author has never had sex, or held a conversation!

If it seems I am being harsh
May 06, 2010 Erin rated it did not like it
While I enjoyed the first book by Tremblay featuring narcoleptic PI Mark Genevich, I couldn't make it through this one. The references to popular culture are so thick that I could barely make it through. I persevered about halfway through but it didn't get any better so I finally gave it up since I have lots of good books in my TBR pile. I was disappointed in this one, but it led me to wonder what, exactly, an author can do if they create a main character who has no hope.
Jul 08, 2016 Mariela rated it really liked it
Detective Mark Genevich is one of the most elaborate characters I've found, his narcolepsy and cataplexy turning the narrative into almost stream of consciousness. One wonders how he can lead such a life and, at the same time, one understands that he would choose some kind of life. Why not this one? As it is always the case, Mr Tremblay left me thinking about the book. This story is one of a kind. Liked it very much.
Apr 25, 2010 Alan rated it really liked it
Shelves: mystery
I really enjoy the main character - a narcoleptic private investigator from South Boston. The local references were great and the dialogue was pitch perfect. I liked this better than the first one - in his first book the narcolepsy was almost too dominant, here it was blended in much more smoothly.
Paris Chanel
May 19, 2016 Paris Chanel rated it did not like it
I purchased this book from a discount bookstore for only $1 after reading the synopsis. I really wanted to enjoy it but...the price was low for a reason. It felt like the story was going nowhere and the protagonist's use of metaphors and dry humor sentence after sentence left me annoyed.
Apr 17, 2010 Heyhansen rated it liked it
Shelves: 2010-fiction
A little rougher than the first one I thought, seemed like the balance between being "serious" and keeping the character like-able wasn't kept as well. Maybe that was intentional, but the outcome for me was I just wasn't as invested in the character.
Jan 06, 2017 Kylie added it
Enjoying this series.
Oct 24, 2013 Sherilyn rated it liked it
Shelves: all-john-s-fault
I like the way Paul writes. He plays with words in a way I've not seen before. It's amusing. I would happily read more of his work.
Mar 04, 2016 Kim rated it did not like it
Shelves: gave-up-on

TRIGGER WARNINGS: ableism, violent content, substance use, domestic violence, sexual abuse
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Paul Tremblay is the author of DISAPPEARANCE AT DEVIL'S ROCK and the award-winning A HEAD FULL OF GHOSTS. His other novels include THE LITTLE SLEEP (Henry Holt), NO SLEEP TILL WONDERLAND (Henry Holt), SWALLOWING A DONKEY'S EYE (Chizine Publications), and the YA novel FLOATING BOY AND THE GIRL WHO COULDN'T FLY (co-written with Stephen Graham Jones, as P. T. Jones).

He is the author of the short sto
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Other Books in the Series

Mark Genevich (2 books)
  • The Little Sleep (Mark Genevich, #1)

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“I swoon into a standing eight count. Goddamn, I actually feel my consciousness want to detach and hide like a turtle retreating into a hopelessly soft shell that won't save anyone.” 4 likes
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