Customer Review

61 of 73 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Sorry ..., June 29, 2011
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This review is from: Before I Go to Sleep: A Novel (Hardcover)
I know I'm in a perilously small minority in panning this book, but ...

I'm perfectly willing to submit to a writer's request to suspend reality if it makes sense to do so in the context of the work -- say, when reading Tolkien or Poe or Vonnegut, or Marvel Comics for that matter.

But this novel requires the reader to suspend all sense of reality in a situation that supposedly is rooted in reality. And that just doesn't work.

The idea that the protagonist, day after day, wakes up in a strange bed with a strange man, not knowing who she is, and, day after day, is resigned to the situation in an hour or two, and responding with minimal sense of fear, panic and confusion, is simply unsupportable. It defies most standards of human behavior and emotion.

We're to believe that, in this situation, she agrees to dash off to meet with strangers who call her on the telephone? That she can write page after page of seamless prose in her diary in mere minutes, while huddled on her knees at a bedroom closet door, pencil in hand? Please. There are scores of other contradictions and illogic, but space precludes addressing them all.

I allowed a second star out of mercy, recognizing that the author had at least created a compelling (if not exactly original) scenario, no matter how poorly it was executed.
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Showing 1-4 of 4 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Jun 29, 2011 8:55:56 AM PDT
Bruce Stern says:
I commend you, and appreciate, the restraint, compassion and honesty you exercised in your review. Negative comments of such consideration, generosity and specificity are too uncommon for Amazon reviewers. Thanks.

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 19, 2011 2:47:29 PM PDT
I agree. I just finished this book and had to force myself to complete it. Think of what Ruth Rendell could have done with this premise.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 5, 2011 12:06:52 PM PST
Linda Wolfe says:
Hi, Jane,
It's nice to read a comment relating to the wonderful Ruth Rendell. I am reading Watson's book now and the same thought occurred to me. Not sure what star I would give this book yet. But it is too bad that the streets of London are not an integral part of the story, as in a Rendell or Barbara Vine novel. No atmosphere means the book is a little flat, like champagne left out of the bottle.
Mary Anne

Posted on Dec 6, 2011 10:26:56 AM PST
welcome to Alzheimers
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