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My blog theme this month is spooky, scary, creepy stuff and nonsense in the lead up to Halloween, so with this in mind I joined the #redeyereadalong on Goodreads. I’ve already acquainted you with Frozen Charlotte, and now from 5th October 2015 – 11th October 2015,  I’ve read the second book in the #redeyereadalong, Sleepless by Lou Morgan, finishing a couple of days early!!!!

I finished this in super quick time, it was such a faced paced, exciting, adrenalin filled read.  Highly entertaining.

Here’s the Goodreads Synopsis:

Young, rich and good-looking, Izzy and her friends lead seemingly perfect lives. But exams are looming and at a school like Clerkenwell, failure is not an option. Luckily, Tigs has a solution. A small pill that will make revision a breeze and help them get the results they need. Desperate to succeed, the group begin taking the study drug. It doesn’t take long before they realize there are far worse things than failing a few exams.

What did I like about Sleepless?

Well first point I’d like to make is the excellent premise. A bunch of kids from a high achieving school, Clerkenwell, are about to sit their final exams and the pressure is well and truly on to get those perfect results, so they are tempted to take a little innocuous looking pill to make sure they get top marks.  The drug looks harmless but smells foul, that’s the first clue to the outcome. Clever use of this premise by Lou Morgan, she illustrates in vivid detail the nasty side of internet supplied drugs, in crazy, manic, horror fashion, and highlights the temptations that teenagers face in a modern world that is becoming more and more pressurised.

One the whole the characters are well crafted, but I would say that my two favourites are Izzy, and Grey. When these two team up later in the book, the story really starts to buzz with energy.  The beginning of the book builds up the story line slowly introducing the reader to this close knit group of friends. It gives you a view of the different personalities of the characters, not all of which came across as that appealing! Tigs, the instigator tempting the others to take the pills seems pretty brattish, and not particularly likeable. But often it is the characters that seem friendly and approachable that turn out to be not so nice. Lou Morgan explores this concept well by bringing  the worst aspects of the different personalities to the forefront in vivid detail after they have foolishly gulped down these study drugs. Result: Chaos, Fear, Dread, Mania, Sleep Deprivation, Hallucinations.

The book’s title Sleepless is a bit of a hint to one of the possible aspects of the drug. But it does not tell the reader the full story, even though sleeping is crucially important to the story line, believe me when I say there is so much more to come. What price will these youngsters have to pay to get those results?  The reality is shocking beyond the mere word Sleepless. Can you imagine what it would be like to suffer the most dreadful spate of insomnia, then add horrendous hallucinations, murderous intent and then you might be halfway there! I’ve suffered from difficulties sleeping from time to time so this really struck a chord with me, as I know just how wretched this can be. Then add into the horror scenario mix this foul smelling and foul behaving drug. Result: Shocking story.

The story tackles friendships well, and looks below the surface of relationships to question how much do friends know about each other?  Even in sibling relationships in which closeness is paramount, (the twin brother and sister, Mia and Dom,) startling truths are revealed. Just how well do we really know those we love? Again, I felt Sleepless handled this topic so well. The effects of the drug are far reaching, turning friends against each other. So faced with that kind of scenario who do you dare to trust?

The ending is great, but I had to read it twice to really understand what the author was trying to say!! Perhaps it was a bit ambiguous on first reading. So read the ending and the build up to the conclusion more than once to savour its startling implications!!

Warning: Sleepless is shocking in parts, one particular scene really turned my stomach, so this is not for younger readers, or those who don’t like reading anything too gruesome.

My rating:

4 stars.

Highly recommended to readers of YA, Horror, Mystery, Contemporary. Go out and read this now!!

Have you read Sleepless? Or any other good creepy books recently? Do comment and let me know.

Bye for now,

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Marje @ Kyrosmagica xx

 

 

 

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