I wish I could lay claims to being one of those book bloggers who has her finger firmly on the literary pulse, but alas it's just not the case. It feels almost pointless adding this review because judging by the number of Goodreads contacts in my list who have already read Before I Go To Sleep, I am later than late to the party. By the time I got my hands on a copy it had already been passed around all the members of my immediate family, and several other friends had given it a glowing recommendation. But I can't help but share my two pence worth because at times I have to admit to wondering if I was reading the same book as everyone else!
The premise of this novel is excellent and I was really looking forward to giving it a go.
Christine suffers from a rare form of amnesia meaning that she can only
create and retain new memories during the day - while she is asleep they
are all lost. This means that each morning she awakes to a world of the
unknown. Her only aid comes in the form of a diary in which she logs
the intricacies of her life and her relationships on a daily basis, to
jog her barely-existent memory when morning comes around again. Because of course even if you don't know what else in your life to rely on, you can always trust what's written in black and white in your own hand. Or can you?
this story was just too implausible for my liking. I just couldn't get
away from the fact that there are not enough hours in the day for
Christine to have documented her every action in such detail, let alone
having time to read through her previous entries as well. In addition, I
felt like the way Christine was treated by the authorities was unbelievable - without wanting to give too much away, the final 'twist'
relies heavily on the supposed incompetence of her carers. In reality
there would be far too many safeguarding measures and red tape in place
to ensure that something like that could happen (I hope?? Please fill me
in if anyone knows of any such real-life examples!).
intricacies aside, I found the novel as a whole to be somewhat
lacking in tension & intrigue. I have to admit that I actually
abandoned the whole thing at one point because I didn't really care what
happened, only picking it up again because I was reaching the end of my
holiday and had finished all the other books in my suitcase! It is a
shame because Before I Go To Sleep has obviously offered so much to
entertain so many other people. Well, we can't all agree on everything,
I read this as part of my RIP VII challenge!