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Before I Go to Sleep: A Novel by S. J.…
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Before I Go to Sleep: A Novel (original 2011; edition 2012)

by S. J. Watson

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3,2172881,724 (3.74)1 / 143
Member:kayceel
Title:Before I Go to Sleep: A Novel
Authors:S. J. Watson
Info:Harper Paperbacks (2012), Edition: Reprint, Paperback, 368 pages
Collections:Adult
Rating:****1/2
Tags:memory loss, mystery, suspense, 2012, women authors, identity, amnesiacs, journaling

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Before I Go to Sleep by S. J. Watson (2011)

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English (270)  Dutch (10)  French (4)  German (2)  Spanish (1)  Danish (1)  All languages (288)
Showing 1-5 of 270 (next | show all)
Ok so I started this book thinking “oh, look at that poor amnesiac gal” and ended up screaming “die bitch die” inside my head. But first things first.

Well actually this book has so many problems I don’t know where to start. Maybe I’ll start with the fact that the author thinks readers are stupid and need everything spelt out for them? Seriously at some point I would start reading a paragraph and I’d know exactly where it was going, so I would think “surely she won’t explain what’s going to happen out loud, right? I mean it’s so obvious nobody would waste words on it, right?” How naïve of me. Long story short, everything was so predictable I almost gave up on reading a few times, not because I figured everything out (even if I did figure everything out, well it wasn’t that hard), but because the narrating bitch voice was telling the story in an unforgivable frustrating way, like she wanted you to know that something was coming but let out too much, so the whole thing seemed very amateurish. Also, the writing was very, very poor (and this coming from the least picky reader when it comes to writing style), the narrating bitch voice was too weak, giving out if-you-have-the-need-to-tell-me-that-a-kite-is-flying-or-some-other-crap-totally-unrelated-to-the-story-one-more-time-please-just-let-me-die-in-peace kind of information or by just being downright stupid.

And the sad part is that her thoughts/reasoning sometimes didn’t make sense at all, but they were more believable than all the other characters put together, since the oddest, most unforgivable actions were easily discharged as “normal” (well, yeah, it is a novel where the female protagonist wakes up every morning without remembering anything that has ever happened to her, but you still would expect some kind of consistent behavior). In fact, this may be the one story where I found nobody likeable. And I do mean nobody. At some point I couldn’t even feel sympathetic toward Christine anymore because I came to realize that she wasn’t a character, just a sad stereotype that went with the flow and didn’t question anything - or rather - questioned the wrong things and just happened to remember pivotal stuff out of the blue at the right time and the right place. (The very ending, too, was a very convenient way out. Too easy doesn’t do the trick for me, sorry).

That said, I didn’t hate the book (in fact when I started it I thought this would be a 5-star review). It had many flaws and the plot twist was never a plot twist, but it had a cool premise, and throughout the first part I was excited and intrigued by the story (even though soon I would just be begging for it to get to the damn point, but let’s look at the bright side for a moment shall we). Also, I’m still curious to watch the movie.

About that..

“He was attractive, too. Not film-star handsome, but better-looking than most.”

(The male lead is freaking Colin Firth. *Crazy inappropriate snorting*).
( )
  kairih | Aug 30, 2014 |
This book is a genuine mind trip that had me hooked right to the end. The repetition, which was necessary since the narrator was the one with daily memory loss, was a little tiresome at times. The writer had a very clear sense of how he wanted to develop the characters and it was quite clever. I really enjoyed the overall thrilling ride this book sent me on and I would recommend it to anyone who loves a good, easily read page turner. ( )
  yougotamber | Aug 22, 2014 |
Ilmselt siis, kui raamat ilmus ja pealkiri meediast läbi jooksis- jäi see mind kummitama. Ilma, et ma oleks teadnud, millest lugu räägib, sai sest mulle nagu mingi mantra: Ei Tohi Magama Jääda.
Kuna mind on karistatud küllusliku unevajadusega, oli seda enda korrale kutsumiseks hea kasutada.

Loe edasi
http://indigoaalane.blogspot.com/2014/03/sj-watson-ei-tohi-magama-jaada.html ( )
  Indigoaalane | Jul 18, 2014 |
Good thriller. ( )
  INorris | Jun 22, 2014 |
Before I Go To Sleep is both a suspenseful, intriguing page turner. But also a reasonably pedestrian, reasonably predictable unfolding of a premise. I enjoyed it, would recommend it, but it was nowhere near the level of spine tingling amazement one can get with a good book by Ruth Rendell, Harlan Coben, or many others.

The book begins when a woman wakes up wondering who the man next to her in bed is. Then she learns that he is her husband, she has a peculiar form of amnesia that resets her memory every night when she goes to sleep, leaving her unable to remember anything before about college. So every day she has to start from scratch, learning her husband, her way around the house, forming new memories that get erased in the morning.

The woman, Christine, meets with a doctor who hands her a journal she has been keeping of her memories over the previous several weeks. And then the suspense begins.

The book feels workmanlike because the journal reads like a novel, the clues are obvious and surrounded with the literary equivalents of neon lights, and everything unfolds somewhat slowly and predictably. It feels like the author could have done more with his premise, the device of a journal, and the unreliability of memory.

That said, it is still a page turner and leaves one fascinated about what life would be like if every day began from scratch. ( )
  nosajeel | Jun 21, 2014 |
Showing 1-5 of 270 (next | show all)
What if you woke up every morning, confused and lost? What if the body you woke up in was not the body you remember going to sleep in? What if you were oblivious to the events of the last 30 years of your life? Memories are what define all of us as people. But when you wake up, tangled in lies, visions and fleeting images of memories that seem to dark and fiction to seem real, how do you make sense of that?

Welcome to the life of Christine Lucas, a middle aged woman suffering from extreme amnesia, who has no memory of what happened in her life for her past 30 years. When she sleeps, her memory melts away, like snow on a spring day.

The highly acclaimed, internationally best seller is truly a suspenseful, interesting and gripping book that will keep you entertained for all 356 pages of it. For lovers of Mysteries, this is a must read book, and I highly recommend it to everybody.
added by davidboot | editEnglish 9, David Boot (Jan 28, 2013)
 
What if you woke up every morning, confused and lost, and unfamiliar with your own reflection in the mirror? What would you do when you wake up, tangled in lies, visions and fleeting images of memories that seem to dark and fiction to seem real?

Welcome to the life of Christine Lucas, a victim of an unsettling accident leaving her unable to retain memories for longer than 24 hours. When she sleeps, her memory melts away, like snow on a spring day. Keeping a diary of her daily events, she fits the pieces of her life puzzle together; she reaches a disturbing conclusion.

The Journal style format of this book creates a truly unique style of writing, one that truly pulls you into the struggles of Christine’s daily life. The narration gives the reader a striking insight into the daily battle of discovering her identity. However, the style of daily journal entries can make the book slow at parts, but much like a roller coaster, it is all simply preparation for the plunge of excitement.

For lovers of mysteries and psychological thrillers, this is a must read book. However, I still highly recommend it to everybody. The sudden flashbacks, the distorted images and the faint impression that things are not at all what they seem. This book will make you rethink all of your unclear memories; it will keep you extremely entertained.

added by davidboot | editEnglish 9, David Boot (Jan 27, 2013)
 
The ending feels hurried; a sentimental postscript to the meticulously plotted main event. But these are minor gripes. Before I Go to Sleep is an enjoyable and impressive first novel. Like the best of its thematic predecessors, it is also an affecting moral allegory: don't forget your loved ones. Or else.
 
The most unnerving aspect of Before I Go to Sleep is the way it is rooted in the domestic, the suburban, the trivial. Forget whizz-bang futurism: it proceeds from ordinary life in tiny, terrifying steps, and is all the better for it.
 
Watson’s pitch-perfect writing propels the story to a frenzied climax that will haunt readers long after they’ve closed the cover on this remarkable book.
added by Shortride | editKirkus Reviews (Mar 1, 2011)
 
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Epigraph
I was born tomorrow
today I live
yesterday killed me


—PARVIZ OWSIA
Dedication
For my mother, and for Nicholas
First words
The bedroom is strange.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Wikipedia in English (2)

Book description
As I sleep, my mind will erase everything I did today. I will wake up tomorrow as I did this morning. Thinking I'm still a child. Thinking I have a whole lifetime of choice ahead of me...

Memories define us.

So what if you lost yours every time you went to sleep?

Your name, your identity, your past, even the people you love — all forgotten overnight.

And the one person you trust may only be telling you half the story.

Every day Christine wakes up not knowing where she is. Her memories disappear every time she falls asleep. Her husband, Ben, is a stranger to her, and he's obligated to explain their life together on a daily basis — all the result of a mysterious accident that made Christine an amnesiac.

With the encouragement of her doctor, Christine starts a journal to help jog her memory every day. One morning, she opens it and sees that she's written three unexpected and terrifying words: "Don't trust Ben." Suddenly everything her husband has told her falls under suspicion.

What kind of accident caused her condition? Who can she trust? Why is Ben lying to her? And, for the reader: Can Christine’s story be trusted?

Haiku summary
To Christine, each day
Is a blank page. Who can she
Trust? Can we trust her?
(passion4reading)

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An amnesiac attempts to reconstruct her past by keeping a journal and discovers the dangerous inconsistencies in the stories of her husband and her secret doctor.

(summary from another edition)

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Editions: 1921758155, 1921758988

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