Book reviews Thriller

Are You Sleeping by Kathleen Barber

About the Book-Are You Sleeping

Serial meets Ruth Ware’s In A Dark, Dark Wood in this inventive and twisty psychological thriller about a mega-hit podcast that reopens a murder case—and threatens to unravel the carefully constructed life of the victim’s daughter.

The only thing more dangerous than a lie…is the truth.

Josie Buhrman has spent the last ten years trying to escape her family’s reputation and with good reason. After her father’s murder thirteen years prior, her mother ran away to join a cult and her twin sister Lanie, once Josie’s closest friend and confidant, betrayed her in an unimaginable way. Now, Josie has finally put down roots in New York, settling into domestic life with her partner Caleb, and that’s where she intends to stay. The only problem is that she has lied to Caleb about every detail of her past—starting with her last name.

When investigative reporter Poppy Parnell sets off a media firestorm with a mega-hit podcast that reopens the long-closed case of Josie’s father’s murder, Josie’s world begins to unravel. Meanwhile, the unexpected death of Josie’s long-absent mother forces her to return to her Midwestern hometown where she must confront the demons from her past—and the lies on which she has staked her future.

Goodreads Page

“The truth is never complicated.  It’s just the truth.  Circumstances may be complicated, but the truth is always black and white.”

Read on for our review of Are You Sleeping by Kathleen Barber

Our Review of Are You Sleeping

I know the book was aiming at a good thriller with podcast themes and stuff but the whole while I could only focus on one thing in the book. Caleb. I mean this has to be the perfect husband and boyfriend and I couldn’t care what was happening in the book. Ironically Caleb is just a wallflower in the book. His character is just there as an extra problem that our heroine has to deal with. To me though, our central character was the problem because I wanted to scream and bang her head to make her come to consciousness as to how idiotic and blind she is to the fact that she has perhaps one of the best possible partners. The funny thing is that the book isn’t about Caleb or our central character’s relationship with Caleb. In fact, Caleb is not even in the picture much. But look at me babbling on and on about this tertiary character in the book. Yup not even secondary. I don’t know how many of the readers were able to see him in the book.

You can imagine the worst possible things your partner could do to you and our central character is doing almost all of that and yet Caleb bounces back with just understanding and compassion. And I decided he has to be somewhere there at the top list of my book boyfriends. Honestly, I don’t even remember what happened in the book and all I can think about is Caleb and how the poor guy was tossed on and off throughout whatever was happening in the book.

Since I have to say something about the book, Let’s explore a bit of “Are you sleeping”. Well, the book uses an interesting technique to reveal the secrets. It takes through these podcasts and recollections of our central character as to what happened in the past, to take us through each event and make us piece each clue together. So you do get to play the detective. But one has to keep in mind that there is a family angle too so it is mixed with family bonds, relationships and murder mystery. So it has dips and ups. On the whole, it is a decent mystery worth investing


In conclusion, I would say ( just as in my whole review) that the whole point of this book was the character of Caleb because I couldn’t fathom a more understanding and supporting partner who had the patience enough to overlook such drastic faults of his partner. Anyway moving away from my creepy addiction to this character, the book has its ups and downs but is a fair enough thriller read that is clouded by a lot of intense family drama too.

Squirrel Rating

You may also like...