Posted in Book Review, Books I have read

While You Were Sleeping – Kathryn Croft

Psychological Fiction 4*s
Psychological Fiction

One of my chief pleasures in reading a ‘grip-lit’ novel is imagining what I would do in the same scenario posed, however the author had me stumped with this one, my imagination simply doesn’t allow me to believe that I would wake up in bed with the murdered body of a neighbour. That said, even though I wasn’t able to play the ‘what would I do?’ game, this book certainly had me reverting to the whodunit game with no problem at all!

Tara Logan wakes up next to her neighbour who has been stabbed, she remembered visiting the night before, her intent being to see his wife, she also remembered drinking some wine, but after that nothing. How she happened to be in the marital bed, naked, but fortunately with no blood on her she can’t imagine. She makes a choice, and runs home pretending that whatever it was that happened, never had.

Luckily for Tara, she is alone in the house, her husband away on a work trip, her daughter staying with a friend and her son is with his grandparents. This rare empty house was so that Tara could submit a work of art for a national prize but she can’t paint she’s too busy worrying what Lee’s wife will say when she returns from her hen-do and hoping that no-one saw her sprinting across the close to the safety of her own home – but wait, it might not be safe, after all, if she didn’t murder Lee someone else definitely knows she was at the scene.

Of course before too long Lee’s body is found and the police begin their investigation and Tara has to stay one step ahead. She no longer just has to lie to her husband, her children and by omission to her parents and her sister, she has to come up with a plausible account of her evening, one that didn’t involve downing a bottle of red wine or two with Lee while his wife was out of town.

To be a successful read in this genre, by necessity most of the characters need flaws, and not little bitty ones either, you need to be far too gullible, or obviously have a loose association with the truth or better still have some form of guilty secret that surfaces at inappropriate moments. While You Were Sleeping is no different, if I were living on this close, particularly with the organisers of the local neighbourhood watch, I might struggle, but Kathryn Croft keeps them all just the right side of outright nuts to keep the number of suspects pegged at practically every character whilst allowing the story to have one foot in a twisted sort of reality. To this end we have the busybodies, the media frenzy, some sibling rivalry, some stalking and some adultery – enough to keep even the most ardent issue junkie sated.

So in brief, I loved this book, the story is certainly compelling and I was invested in every aspect; I wanted to know not only who killed Lee, but why, how when and how on earth did they expect to get away with it? This is a book to set aside time for, because although you want to ask the major questions, you probably don’t want to dwell too much on some of the other aspects of the book, particularly those surrounding the police investigation. But that’s a minor quibble and as a fiction reader as long as the plot rattles along and doesn’t introduce outright implausible happenings, I’m prepared to enjoy the ride, and what a ride this book was.

I’d like to thank the publishers Bookouture for providing me with a copy of While You Were Sleeping. This review is my thank you to them, and of course the author Kathryn Croft

First Published UK: 16 November 2016
Publisher: Bookouture
No of Pages: 324
Genre: Psychological Thriller – Grip Lit
Amazon UK
Amazon US

This is the third book I’ve read by this author

Kathryn Croft – Books I’ve Reviewed

The Girl With No Past
The Girl You Lost


A book lover who clearly has issues as obsessed with crime despite leading a respectable life

24 thoughts on “While You Were Sleeping – Kathryn Croft

  1. Glad to see that you enjoyed the book. The small issues as far as the investigation was concerned did bug me but it was still a good read. Great review!


  2. I found this a good page-turner but did struggle with the characters- especially the very unprofessional cop!! I also wasn’t convinced by the ending… But having said that I couldn’t put it down!


  3. What an intriguing premise, Cleo! It makes me wonder exactly what did happen, and that’s part of the secret to a great read, I think. I think you’re right, too. If this sort of story is going to work well, you need to have a carefully drawn main character. And it seems that’s happened here, which is great.


  4. “To be a successful read in this genre, by necessity most of the characters need flaws, and not little bitty ones either, you need to be far too gullible, or obviously have a loose association with the truth or better still have some form of guilty secret that surfaces at inappropriate moments.”
    That’s a great quote Cleo. Very true.


  5. This one sounds great. Definitely adding to my TBR… seems like there are so many thrillers right now I want to read. A good problem I guess. 🙂


  6. Great review! It sure does sound like a great thriller; I will have to mix up my ARC order so I can read this one first. 🙂 I’m glad you enjoyed it!


  7. I’d rather not imagine myself in the situation the main character finds herself in! The premise sounds very good, and I’m glad you enjoyed it despite a few flaws with the investigation.


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