Heidi Ward's Reviews > Before I Go to Sleep

Before I Go to Sleep by S.J. Watson
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"Memento" with more journaling and fewer tattoo needles. Kidding, sort of.

Watson's debut novel is a solid psychological thriller that kept me guessing, and kept me up late finishing it. To say more about the twists and turns than the book blurb does would constitute spoilers, but the narrator Christine's total amnesia, and the ways in which disturbing memories of her past begin to slip in by increments as she writes the details of her daily struggle, make for a taut and tantalizing narrative.

It's not a perfect book -- at least one major plot element will demand a HUGE suspension of disbelief -- but Watson's prose is quite effective in evoking the terror and dislocation Chrissy endures each morning upon waking to a blank slate. All told, Before I Go to Sleep is a creepy and intense read, and certainly better written than your standard pulp thriller. I'll give it 3.75 for the plot; 4.25 for the writing.

(That being said, I have read two books in the last month in which the narrator has to piece her own identity -- and the cause of her amnesia -- together from her handwritten notes. Gotta say The Rook was way more inventive, if not nearly as serious.)

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Reading Progress

March 25, 2012 – Started Reading
March 25, 2012 – Shelved
March 25, 2012 – Shelved as: library
March 25, 2012 – Shelved as: psychological
March 25, 2012 – Shelved as: 21st-century
March 25, 2012 –
page 100
March 27, 2012 –
page 155
March 27, 2012 – Shelved as: suspense-thriller
March 27, 2012 – Shelved as: madness-and-mental-health
March 27, 2012 –
page 203
March 28, 2012 – Shelved as: identity
March 28, 2012 – Finished Reading
July 27, 2015 – Shelved as: reviewed

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