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(Sleeper #1)

3.98  ·  Rating details ·  40 ratings  ·  19 reviews
Sixteen-year-old Will Starling is pulled from the sea with no memory of his past. In his blazer is a strange notebook with a bullet lodged inside: a bullet meant for him. As London prepares for the Blitz, Will soon finds himself pursued by vicious agents and a ruthless killer known as the Pastor. All of them want Will's notebook and will do anything to get it. As Will's me ...more
Paperback, 228 pages
Published April 28th 2017 by The Dome Press
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Average rating 3.98  · 
Rating details
 ·  40 ratings  ·  19 reviews

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Karen Cole
May 07, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Sleeper opens with Will Starling still knowing who he is and what he is doing. At this early point the reader is told very little. It is clear he is on some sort of mission but why and who he is working for is a mystery. However, it is immediately obvious that there are people who want him dead. After Will loses his memory we are on equal footing with his character, which I found a really clever way of revealing the truth, neither the protagonist nor the reader knows before the other. What follo ...more
Jackie Law
Apr 26, 2017 rated it really liked it
Sleeper, by JD Fennell, is the first book in a proposed action adventure trilogy aimed at young adults. It introduces the reader to sixteen year old Will Starling who has been training since the age of twelve with the agents of VIPER. This ruthless organisation has military links around the world, access to advanced weapons technology, and is intent on acquiring power and wealth for its elusive puppet masters.

When the story opens it is 1941 and England is at war. Will is near Hastings on the mis
Mar 13, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Will Starling is on a mission when something makes him disobey orders. The result is him fleeing for his life and guarding what he has discovered in his search for truth.

Set in 1940’s London, this book definitely falls into the “fast-paced” category. Will has a specific skill set, though these skills do catch him unawares as he tries to remember who he is, who he should trust. It was great to learn about Will as he remembered things about himself, a great way to put the reader on an even keel wi
Jessica Bayliss
May 11, 2018 rated it really liked it
A fun, adventure with a Da Vinci Code + Indiana Jones vibe. Fast paced. A great blend of thrills and a speculative element.
Laura Turner
Apr 18, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2017-reads
All my reviews can be found on my blog:

Review to follow on 5th May 2017 for blog tour.
Chris Hannon
Jul 27, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Set against a backdrop of wartime Britain, Sleeper tells the story of Will Starling, a talented teenager with special training and an undercover mission that could tip the balance of the war either way...

Set at a breakneck pace, I loved the flow of the story as well as the menace of the two baddies: the pastor and Colonel Frost which makes for a high octane cat and mouse that i couldn't put down. JD Fennell does indeed write up a storm, and i will definitely be on the train for the next novel:
A Colleen Jones
Aug 08, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This YA thriller is like a bit of Jason Bourne mixed with The 39 Steps but featuring teenagers! It is told from the main character's point of view, so what he feels, you feel, especially about the people he meets and the situation he's in. Great cast of characters around him, lots of action and adventure, set during WWII. There's also a rather mystical element to the story, which is a nice twist on the war-time thriller caper. I'm looking forward to reading the follow-up story! ...more
Katherine Sunderland
This book is the perfect blend of Alex Rider, Jason Bourne and The Da Vinci Code. As the main character, Will, is 16, the story is aimed at Young Adults but it is exciting and with enough intrigue to appeal to anyone who enjoys a fast paced thriller.

Fennell wastes no time sucking you straight into the story, opening in London during the Second World War and in the thick of the Blitz. As if this setting wasn't dramatic enough, we are thrown head on into the action and barely allowed to draw breat
Rachel (Rae)
May 02, 2017 rated it it was amazing
The first couple of chapters are action packed and I was definitely thrown straight into the story. It was a great introduction to Will and his very dangerous life. Many questions are brought up regarding Will's past and it made things all the more interesting that Will has lost his memory. Due to the memory loss that Will has I felt that I got a more tense experience. There was plenty of mystery surrounding Will and I was eager to discover all about Will and his life. He is a strong, resilient ...more
May 10, 2017 rated it it was amazing
SLEEPER by JD Fennell begins with the main character, sixteen-year-old Will Starling, in the throes of a secret mission set in England in 1941. Working as a trained soldier for the Agents of Viper, Will is sent to steal a very special notebook that could change the world as we know it. But Will has his own plans, and they do not involve the vicious Viper team whom he despises. Obtaining the notebook, Will is then on the run from Viper and The Pastor, a truly terrifying enemy. But when he almost ...more
Nicole Sweeney
May 06, 2017 rated it really liked it
Review originally posted on The Bibliophile Chronicles

This is one action packed story! Sleeper follows sixteen year old Will Starling who is anything but ordinary. I really loved this book. I was sucked in almost straight away. Sleeper is written in short punchy chapters, that always leave you wanting more. I found myself often saying ‘oh the chapter is short, I’ll just read another one’ and still being there an hour later. Sleeper is a well-spun narrative, and one that fans of Anthony Horowitz’
Ronnie Turner
Sleeper is an edge-of-your-seat read that beckons you into Will Starling’s world with the very first sentence. This book is not only fast-paced but also a hugely exciting tale, that beautifully encapsulates the authenticity of war and excitement of a thriller without losing its emotional depth.

When sixteen-year-old Will Starling wakes after being pulled from the sea, he remembers nothing from his life before. With only a notebook in his pocket as a clue to his identity, he travels to London in t
A romper of an action adventure story that's great for fans of Alex Rider and the Young Bond series'.

I loved that the pace kept going the whole way through, barely giving the reader (or poor Will Starling) a chance to catch a breath!

The setting in the outbreak of World War 2 is excellent, it's vivid and richly described making us think about Central London in detail I hadn't thought of before - like what happened to all the exhibits in the National Museums and Galleries? They needed to be kept s
Oct 26, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I forgot to review this it seems. Book 25 of 2017, Sleeper by @jdfennellauthor (on IG). I found this back in July at St Paul's tube station (deliberately and cleverly by the publishers, due to the tie-in of the story). Having read it I have now written a note inside [placed] it back at St Paul's for someone else to find and enjoy. It's definitely YA but an enjoyable historic-fiction romp through wartime London. Almost sad to let go of it but the story must go on...☺️ ...more
Book Inspector
Oct 21, 2018 rated it it was amazing
The protagonist in this book is Will, he is a sixteen-year-old spy, and the whole book is set in 1941, during the Second World War. I loved that this book is telling an action-filled story but during WWII! I loved how the author described everything, from guns, cars to buildings and streets.

This story was told from single, Will’s, perspective but it was fully sufficient for me, as this story was trying to keep the secrets and give out all the findings slowly. I really liked how J. D. Fennell cho
Cally Evans
Characters seemed like robots but the plot was alright.
Sep 28, 2018 rated it really liked it
I might be a little biased, since I know the author.
i can see why this will appeal but I'm not getting into it right now. might return to it in summer holidays ...more
Kevin Moloney
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Nov 03, 2020
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D H Thompson
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Sep 15, 2018
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Sep 07, 2017
Anna Murray
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Jan 04, 2019
Ann-Marie Norton
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Jul 03, 2017
Geoff. Lamb
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Sep 30, 2018
Iva Vucenovic
rated it it was amazing
Jul 25, 2017
Gosh! What to say about Sleeper, fast paced and action packed – a book I could see on the big screen for sure! Following Will Starling, fighting to stay alive and hotly pursued in his quest to secure the Stones of Fire. Set during World War 2 and therefore lacking the modern technology we take for granted, Will relies on instinct and old fashioned means of communication including morse code and phone boxes (remember them!?)
Reminiscent at times to James Bond or even The Da Vinci Code, this book a
rated it liked it
Mar 11, 2019
Jo Zebedee
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Jun 13, 2017
Amy Parker
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Jul 05, 2018
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J.D. was born in Belfast at the start of the Troubles, and began writing stories at a young age to help understand the madness unfolding around him. A lover of reading, he devoured a diverse range of books – his early influences include Fleming, Tolkien, Shakespeare and the Brontës.

He left Belfast at the age of nineteen and worked as a chef, bartender, waiter and later began a career in writing f

Other books in the series

Sleeper (2 books)
  • The Red Storm (Sleeper #2)

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