Friday, April 22, 2016

Sleep Sister - Laura Elliot

I read Sleep Sister by Laura Elliot has part of a month long Buddy Read in the Netgalley Readers Goodreads group. Like me, my fellow readers were enchanted by the synopsis of this book, drawn to the family drama and the suspense.

Rating: 3 Stars
Published: March 2016
ARC provided via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

Amazon Goodreads
Beth and Sara are as different as day and night; one with dark hair and one with blonde, one is loved by her mother while the other is not, but both their childhoods are ruined by the same monster. With years of secrets behind them, Beth and Sara's childhood continues to haunt them, and those around them, for their entire lives. Their spouses, their friends, and their children feel the ripple effects of the past in their daily lives, with words unspoken and harsh secrets leaving a dark shadow over them. As the secrets start to reveal themselves, Beth must learn to cope with the secret she and Beth shared, and the revenge she wants to see through.

I was sucked into the story of unhappy Beth and spoiled Sara right away, desperate to see how two sisters were wound together with one secret when their lives seemed so different. As I continued to read I found myself wrapped in the dark cloak that Beth had wrapped around her, her life taking a different path as she ran from the monster both physically and in her head. I wanted so desperately to see these two sisters lives play out differently, but like the childhood abuse, their adult lives carried that same heavy weight. In Parts 2 through 4 we meet more characters, affected by the tragedy of the sister's youth though they don't know of it. I really like seeing how a moment in two young girl's lives played into the future, I think it takes a lot for an author to really carry such a hard thing, such as childhood abuse, through an entire book and Laura Elliot does so well. There are several layers to the story and it was easy to feel as though I was twisted up in it just as much as the characters were.

Unfortunately, while the words were beautiful and the story line was intriguing, Sleep Sister just felt never ending. With several POV's, flashbacks, and four total parts, I lost track of the characters and my feelings for them as I ultimately ended up reading just to finally get to the end. At one point I lost track of the several open plots that twisted together, realizing as I finished the book that some were left incomplete. While the subject was sad one, my complaint lies more with how the book flowed and worked through the characters emotions than with the heavy subject. I tend to love a good family drama, but this one just wasn't for me.

Sleep Sister is heavy, a realistic look at the drama and angst that can tear a family apart and leave rippling effects for years to come. Everything you could want in a dramatic suspenseful read is in this book and I think it just didn't work on a personal level for me.

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