'Reading a book is like re-writing it for yourself. You bring to a novel, anything you read, all your experience of the world. You bring your history and you read it in your own terms.'- Angela Carter

Wednesday, 12 June 2013

REVIEW: Before I Go To Sleep - S. J. Watson

Before I Go To Sleep - S. J. Watson
Before I Go To Sleep
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.

Welcome to Christine's life.
This was such an unsettling read. I didn't know what to expect from the book upon starting but I am so glad that I picked it up. The concept was enough to give me the shivers - just imagine waking up every day with no idea where you are, who you are and who on earth is sleeping in the bed next to you? There are a lot of questions left hanging open and we, as well as our protagonist Christine, are still left wondering about the truth of the things that we have been told.

I felt incredibly torn throughout the entire novel. Do I trust Ben, her husband? How about Dr. Nash? Is he plotting something? We as readers are equally as lost with no memories of Christine's past to go on. Almost immediately we are given a curve ball, one single sentence which sticks with us throughout the book; DO NOT TRUST BEN. Why? Will we ever find out the answers to any of our questions? What makes this all the more chilling is that parts of Christine's amnesia are taken from real cases - things which unsettled me greatly. I cannot bare the thought of losing my memories.

Christine's case is incredibly rare with her being able to remember entire days but as soon as she falls asleep, everything erases and she awakens the next morning in yet another web of confusion. I truly sympathised with Christine. With so many things unveiled throughout, and her journal keeping her up to date on all of what she has discovered in the previous weeks, the readers are in as much turmoil as she is. Why does Ben keep lying to her? Does Dr. Nash have her best interests at heart? A really different book from what I usually read.

I have this book 3.5/5* as it unsettled me far too much to say that I 'enjoyed' it. I definitely recommend the book, I just think it was that little bit to real for me. It's written amazingly, and I began to question what on earth I would do if I lost my memory. I mean, it would be difficult as I wouldn't realise immediately, and that completely terrifies me. I recommend this book, definitely, although it won't be one I will be picking up again for a long time! Baby, I know, haha.


  1. I had no idea what I was getting into when I read this one. It is a crazy read and agree when you say a bit too REAL.

    Ashley @ The Quiet Concert

  2. I loved this book. Though, you're right; it feels strange saying that about a story dealing with something that could happen to anyone at any time. I thought it was well-written too and I hope to see more from Watson!
    --Sam @ SIK Book Reviews


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