Julie's Reviews > Are You Sleeping

Are You Sleeping by Kathleen  Barber
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really liked it
bookshelves: e-book, edelweiss-review, mystery-shelf, suspense, 2019, crime, gallery-books

Are you Sleeping (Truth be Told) by Kathleen Barber is a 2017 Gallery Books publication.

Highly suspenseful psychological thriller!

I received a newsletter/ email from one of the many book related sites I subscribe to, I can’t remember which one- but they highly recommended a book called ‘Truth be Told’ which will soon be adapted into a miniseries for Apple TV. When I went to Goodreads to see how well the book was received, I didn’t find it right away. A little digging revealed the book was originally published under a different title- “Are you Sleeping”

As it turns out, I already had this book on my Kindle, but as so often happens, it slid down on my TBR list a long while back. So, I pulled it up, intending to only sample a few chapters, and before I knew it, I was halfway through it.

True Crime Podcasts are all the rage, and have been instrumental in helping solve cold cases, or in casting doubt on the guilt of a prime suspect or the person currently serving time for a crime they may not have committed. As such, the premise of this book is timely, capitalizing on a very hot trend.

In this case, ruthless crime reporter, Poppy Parnell, the host of a true crime podcast, begins poking around in the murder investigation of one Charles Buhrman. When Poppy challenges the eyewitness accounts, going so far as to suggest the man sent to prison for the murder might, in fact, be innocent, the podcast goes viral almost immediately. Everyone is talking about it.

But for Charles’ daughter, Josie- the podcast becomes her worst nightmare. After her father’s death, she left home, changed her name and started a new life. Now with the popularity of Poppy’s podcast, hurling the lurid details of her father’s murder into the public’s consciousness again, her hard won battle for privacy is skating on thin ice.

Then she gets a phone call explaining that her estranged mother, who had joined a cult after her husband was killed, has died, forcing Josie to return home and face the past she has been running from for over a decade…

As much as she is loath to think about her messy family situation and the awful events surrounding her father’s murder, deep down Josie is worried Poppy might be right. What really happened the night Charles Buhrman was murdered? Could there have been a mistake? Is the wrong man in prison? Is the real killer still out there?

The tension in this book is thick- not just from the mystery surrounding the murder, but from all the family drama and the prickly situation Josie finds herself in with her fiancé, who knew nothing of her past. I’m always a sucker for deep dark family secrets and betrayals, and stunning revelations. On top of that, cold case mysteries are one of my favorite crime tropes, which explains why I was so easily pulled into this drama.

As engrossing as the story was, it was probably impossible to fully prevent one from developing a strong suspicion about the ultimate big reveal. I guessed it in advance, but the author left me twisting in the wind almost to the bitter end before finally letting all the missing pieces to click into place.

Normally, that wouldn’t be such a bad thing, but in this case, the author waited a bit too long to lock in the final puzzle piece, which under the circumstances, was anticlimactic, and a little too convenient, as well.

However, I still enjoyed the story. It was a fast read- in a good way- and was very absorbing and atmospheric.

Overall, this is an impressive debut novel and I think Kathleen Barber is an author we’ll want to keep our eyes on.

3.5 rounded up.
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Reading Progress

March 1, 2017 – Shelved
March 1, 2017 – Shelved as: to-read
March 1, 2017 – Shelved as: e-book
March 1, 2017 – Shelved as: edelweiss-review
March 1, 2017 – Shelved as: mystery-shelf
March 1, 2017 – Shelved as: suspense
November 30, 2019 – Started Reading
December 12, 2019 – Shelved as: 2019
December 12, 2019 – Shelved as: crime
December 12, 2019 – Shelved as: gallery-books
December 12, 2019 – Finished Reading

Comments Showing 1-43 of 43 (43 new)

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message 1: by Dita (new)

Dita Happy reading!


Julie Dita wrote: "Happy reading!"

Thank you, Dita!! So far it's pretty good! 😊


message 3: by Dita (new)

Dita Awesome!


message 4: by Antoinette (new)

Antoinette Great review, Julie!😁


message 5: by Ceecee (new)

Ceecee Fantastic review Julie 🤗


message 6: by Maureen (new)

Maureen Wonderful review as ever Julie 🤗💕


message 7: by Richard (new)

Richard An excellent review Julie :)


message 8: by Kimber (new)

Kimber Silver Awesome review, Julie! 😊


message 9: by Paromjit (new)

Paromjit Excellent review, Julie.......I can barely remember a large number of books that I have on kindle! :) 😘🌷


message 10: by Beverly (new)

Beverly Wow! This sounds wonderful Julie! I added it posthaste.


message 11: by Angela M (new)

Angela M Great review, Julie.


Julie Antoinette wrote: "Great review, Julie!😁"

Thank you, Antoinette! 💖


Julie Ceecee wrote: "Fantastic review Julie 🤗"

Thank you, Ceecee!! 💖


Julie Maureen wrote: "Wonderful review as ever Julie 🤗💕"

Thank you very much, Maureen!! 💖


Julie Richard wrote: "An excellent review Julie :)"

Thank you, Richard!! 😊😊


Julie Kimber wrote: "Awesome review, Julie! 😊"

Thank you, Kimber!! 💖


Julie Paromjit wrote: "Excellent review, Julie.......I can barely remember a large number of books that I have on kindle! :) 😘🌷"

Thank you, Paromjit!! Yes, I wish I could read them all someday! 💖


Julie Beverly wrote: "Wow! This sounds wonderful Julie! I added it posthaste."

Thank you, Beverly! Hope you enjoy it! 💖


Julie Angela M wrote: "Great review, Julie."

Thank you, Angela!! 💖


message 20: by Michelle (new) - added it

Michelle Awesome review, Julie! 💜 This sounds great!


Julie Michelle wrote: "Awesome review, Julie! 💜 This sounds great!"

Thank you very much, Michelle! 💖


message 22: by Holly (new) - added it

Holly  B I have this one somewhere! Hoping to read it soon. Great review Julie!


Marialyce What a terrific review, Julie!


message 24: by Paula (new)

Paula Great review, Julie!


Julie Holly wrote: "I have this one somewhere! Hoping to read it soon. Great review Julie!"

Thank you, Holly!! Hope you enjoy it, once you get a chance to read it! 💖


Julie Paula wrote: "Great review, Julie!"

Thank you so much, Paula!! 💖


Julie Marialyce wrote: "What a terrific review, Julie!"

Thank you very much, Marialyce!! 💖


message 28: by Libby (new)

Libby Fabulous review, Julie!


Kaceey Excellent review Julie!🤗💖


Julie Libby wrote: "Fabulous review, Julie!"

Thank you so much, Libby!! 💖


message 31: by Kat (new) - added it

Kat Valentine Fantabulous review Julie!!💋😉💖👍


Julie Kaceey wrote: "Excellent review Julie!🤗💖"

Thank you very much, Kaceey!! 💖😊💖


Alex ✰ Comets and Comments ✰ Wonderful review, Julie! <3 x


Julie Kat wrote: "Fantabulous review Julie!!💋😉💖👍"

Thank you, dear Kat!! 💖😊💖


Julie Alex ✰ Comets and Comments ✰ wrote: "Wonderful review, Julie! <3 x"

Thank you so much, Alex!! 💖😊💖


message 36: by Deanna (new) - added it

Deanna Great honest review, Julie!!


Julie Deanna wrote: "Great honest review, Julie!!"

Thank you, Deanna! 💖😊💖


message 38: by Mackenzie (new)

Mackenzie Glad you still enjoyed the story even though the ending was evident! Lovely review :)


Julie Mackenzie wrote: "Glad you still enjoyed the story even though the ending was evident! Lovely review :)"

Thank you very much, Mackenzie!! 💖


Meredith Fantastic review, Julie! I felt the same way about this book!


Julie Meredith wrote: "Fantastic review, Julie! I felt the same way about this book!"

Thank you very much, Meredith. It had a few problems, but overall, I liked it well enough. 💖


message 42: by Laur&#x1f4ab; (new)

Laur&#x1f4ab; Awesome review Julie


Julie Laur💫 wrote: "Awesome review Julie"

Thank you, Laur!! 💖


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