Today I’m delighted to be taking part in the blog tour for Sleepless by Louise Mumford.
Don’t close your eyes. Don’t fall asleep. Don’t let them in.
Thea is an insomniac; she hasn’t slept more than three hours a night for years.
So when an ad for a sleep trial that promises to change her life pops up on her phone, Thea knows this is her last chance at finding any kind of normal life.
Soon Thea’s sleeping for longer than she has in a decade, and awakes feeling transformed. So much so that at first she’s willing to overlook the oddities of the trial – the lack of any phone signal; the way she can’t leave her bedroom without permission; the fact that all her personal possessions are locked away, even her shoes.
But it soon becomes clear that the trial doesn’t just want to help Thea sleep. It wants to control her sleep…
An unputdownable, gripping psychological thriller for fans of The One, Behind Her Eyes and Girl A!
Oh my, this was an absolute stunner. You know when you just pick up a book and be sucked into the story, only to surface groggy eyed and feeling like you’ve escaped reality for a few hours? This was exactly what this book did for me.
I find sleep a fascinating subject. I wouldn’t say I suffer from insomnia as such but I do spend my fair share of hours chasing the illusive shut eye usually when I wake in the wee small hours of the morning. It can feel like you’re the only person awake in the world. Louise perfectly captures the loneliness, the sense of isolation and the tiredness that takes overs your body from lack of sleep.
Thea’s insomnia has driven her to despair. Wanting to claim back some form of a life she embarks on a sleep trial, handing over the most intimate part of her, her mind. The trial promises to cure her sleep difficulties and even help her become a better version of herself. But what if there is a more sinister reason behind the trial? Once you allow someone to tamper with the mind is there anything they won’t be able to do, anything they won’t be able to control.
It’s not long before Thea feels that the trial is asking just a little too much of her and asks to leave. But leaving isn’t quite that simple, especially when someone has their sites on controlling your sleep, even controlling your mind , and so doesn’t want you to go.
This is a such a clever novel. It’s incredibly unnerving but completely absorbing. I didn’t know who to trust right up to the very end and felt every emotion that Thea was feeling. The anguish, the despair and the fear. Yet she’s made of stronger stuff than she thinks and She firmly fights back, quite literally fighting for both her mind and her life.
This would without doubt make a stunning film. It has so many high adrenaline and ‘will she make it’ moments that push you on, turning page after page. Our fear of technology is embraced within the pages of this novel. Or perhaps it’s the fear of those who control the technology. For me it almost felt like a modern day Frankenstein, and what a monster they had created this time!
Many thanks to the lovely people at HQ Stories for inviting me to take part in the blog tour. It was a fantastic read and I wonder if there is the opening for a sequel within the final pages. Oh, I do hope so.
About the author
Louise was born and lives in South Wales. From a young age she loved books and dancing, but hated having to go to sleep, convinced that she might miss out on something interesting happening in the world whilst she dozed – much to her mother’s frustration! Insomnia has been a part of her life ever since.
She studied English Literature at university and graduated with first class honours. As a teacher she tried to pass on her love of reading to her students (and discovered that the secret to successful teaching is… stickers! She is aware that that is, essentially, bribery.)
In the summer of 2019 Louise experienced a once-in-a-lifetime moment: she was discovered as a new writer by her publisher at the Primadonna Festival. Everything has been a bit of a whirlwind since then.
Louise lives in Cardiff with her husband and spends her time trying to get down on paper all the marvellous and frightening things that happen in her head.
Sleepless is her debut thriller and was published by HQ on 10th Dec 2020.
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