Fourth Grade Journey

A Fourth Grade Teacher's Journey Through the World of Books

Saturday, February 11, 2017

The SleepWalker by Chris Bohjalian

How I Heard About It:  Chris Bohjalian is one of my favorite authors of novels published for adults.  I've read most of his works and loved every one of them.  What amazes me most is how each of his stories is completely different from his other novels.  A sign of a truly gifted writer.  This was actually our most recent selection for our BBC (Boy's Book Club).  I was excited that another member of my book club chose this newest work by Chris.  

What It Is About:  Annalee is a mother.  She is a wife.  She is also a sleepwalker.  While her husband is away on business, she leaves the house in the middle of the night and doesn't return home.  Her two daughters, Lianna and Paige, are left to deal with the mystery while they wait for their father's return.  Gavin Rikert is the detective put in charge of Annalee's disappearance.  Lianna ends up the one family member working most closely with Gavin to find her mother, while Warren and Paige try to continue their lives as normal as possible.  Lianna learns that Gavin actually knew her mother before her disappearance.  This brings questions, but also answers as to what her mother was going through with her sleepwalking.  As more and more time goes by, the family isn't sure they will ever get the answers they are looking; but as both daughters go through "sleep" testing, they begin to put together the pieces of that fateful night.  

What I Thought Of It:  It is always a bit nerve raking to read a new novel by a favorite author.  As the reader you always want it to be as good, or better, than the previous story you read by them.  This was a complete delight to read.  From the first page to the last page, I enjoyed everything about the story.  It was part mystery, part family saga, and part just GREAT fiction.  I was fascinated by the concept of sleepwalker and it was so interesting to read about what can happen to people who do sleepwalk.  There were so many great surprises along the way that kept me completely engaged the entire reading experience.  I knew saw the ending coming and was kind of a jaw-dropping moment.  Love it as did the other members of my BBC.  

Who Should Read It:  If you have read anything by Chris, then you need to experience his newest story.  If you enjoy strong, rich, well-told literature, then this is the story for you.  The book really has it all:  great characters, swiftly-moving plot, and lots of mystery and suspense.  Well done Chris Bohjalian!  Happy Reading...

Rating:  4 STARS out of 5 Stars

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