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Sleep by C.L.Taylor

Writing.ie | Book Reviews | Crime/Thriller

By Swirl and Thread

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7 Guests
7 Secrets
1 Killer
Do you dare to sleep? 

Sleep is the latest novel from C.L. Taylor and is published with Avon Books. Described as ‘a masterful, nail-shredding read,’ it follows the story of Anna Willis, a young woman struggling to come to terms with a traumatic event in her life. Anna was the driver of a car involved in a terrible accident leading to fatalities and life-threatening injuries for others. Anna, following recuperation in hospital, walked out the door free of any major physical scars, but the emotional scarring was something she could never escape from. She was unable to return to work and struggled in the relationship with her boyfriend. Anna had repeated nightmares that filled her with terror, resulting in severe exhaustion and the inability to cope any more.

Anna makes the decision to pack up and travel to the remote island of Rum, off the Scottish coast. A hotel there is looking for assistance in the everyday running of things and Anna is convinced that this is just what she needs. Anna is consumed with guilt following the accident and the isolation of Rum might just be the solution for her, perhaps allowing her to make sense of her life and hopefully get some closure.

Rum is noted for it’s climate and landscape, attracting folk searching escape from the everyday noise and pollution of their lives. Seven such guests sign in with Anna at the Bay View Hotel, each carrying their own secret, each with their own agenda.

Anna, after only two weeks in situ at the Bay View herself, has settled in, working companionably beside David, the proprietor. A relationship of trust has developed between the pair and Anna is very positive about her decision to come to the island. Before she had left home Anna had felt very suspicious of things and incidences, very jumpy to noises and events, but here on Rum, the wildness and the tranquility of the island, relaxes her and she drops her guard somewhat.

As the seven guests settle into their surroundings, Anna is forced to rethink this barren landscape, as the peace she has sought is very suddenly disrupted, throwing Anna into another, different, nightmare, one that she fears she may never escape from.

Sleep is an absorbing tale. Anna is a gutsy protagonist. The setting of Rum, an isolated island, adds to the claustrophobic feeling of the book and as the weather turns, the sense of foreboding drips off the pages, adding to the intense atmosphere of the story. The portrayal of each guest is skillfully written, adding to the overall suspense of the plot. There were a few areas within the book that I felt were a little ‘out there’ but, this is fiction, so I parked reality for a bit and allowed myself to get caught up in Anna’s story……so much so that I read it in one sitting!

(c) Swirl and Thread

Order your copy online here.

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