Monday, May 23, 2011

Book Review: Sleepless by Cyn Balog

Sleepless by Cyn Balog

Reading Level: Young Adult
Hardcover: 224 pages
Publisher: Delacorte Books for Young Readers (July 13, 2010)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 038573848X
ISBN-13: 978-0385738484
Source: Purchased from
Cover: I'm indifferent about this cover. I wouldn't pick the novel up based on it alone but I wouldn't put it down either. I like that there is something that represents both characters on the cover.
First Sentence: "Griffin Colburn knew something was wrong the moment he slid into the driver's seat."

Mini- ReviewSleepless was a fun, light read with a rarely seen paranormal creature.

Book Summary:

Eron DeMarchelle isn't supposed to feel this connection. He is a Sandman, a supernatural being whose purpose is to seduce his human charges to sleep. Though he can communicate with his charges in their dreams, he isn't encouraged to do so. After all, becoming too involved in one human's life could prevent him from helping others get their needed rest.

 But he can't deny that he feels something for Julia, a lonely girl with fiery red hair and sad dreams. Just weeks ago, her boyfriend died in a car accident, and Eron can tell that she feels more alone than ever. Eron was human once too, many years ago, and he remembers how it felt to lose the one he loved. In the past, Eron has broken rules to protect Julia, but now, when she seems to need him more than ever, he can't reach her. Eron's time as a Sandman is coming to a close, and his replacement doesn't seem to care about his charges. Worse, Julia is facing dangers she doesn't recognize, and Eron, as he transitions back to being human, may be the only one who can save her. . . .
 Even once they've become human again, Sandmen are forbidden to communicate with their charges. But Eron knows he won't be able to forget Julia. Will he risk everything for a chance to be with the girl he loves?
 Cyn Balog's follow-up to Fairy Tale has more wit, more supernatural delights, and more star-crossed romance! Teen girls will love this story of a Sandman who falls in love with his human charge.
Book Review

Sleepless is a little bitty book with a whole lot of punch. Focusing primarily on the characters, the chapters are flipped between Eron, a sandman turning human, and Julia, Eron's human he puts to sleep. The storyline was predictable but interesting and the characters were off beat enough to feel real.

Julia and Eron both took turns narrating their journey. One of the best aspects of this novel were their voices. Though there were headers on the title to tell you whose chapter it was, the voices were so distinctive that it didn't need it. Julia was aloof and lonely, trying to cope with how she should act by the death of her first and only boyfriend Griffin. She's unique and her relationship with everyone is complex. I liked getting to know her and I really enjoyed her open, solid relationship with her mother. Eron was born in another time and as such, his narrator was far more formal. I liked how sure he was that he would fit in even though he didn't understand all the phrases of the 21st century and why girl's hemlines have shrunk. It was great watching him try to adapt.

The relationship between Eron and Julia was interesting, I just wish we'd known earlier about Julia's secret so we could understand why Eron felt so drawn and protective towards her. I wanted to know what it was about her that had him hooked and we found that out but not until much later in the novel. As a reader, I don't like not being included in things the characters know. There were also a lot of chapters that ended right when we were getting to something I wanted to know about and then the next chapter with that character picked up somewhere else and DIDN'T tell us. That got frustrating. Over all though, the writing and the plot were solid and I felt like I really understood the character's motivations.

Hands down, the reason I needed this book was because it was about a sandman. I wanted to know all about it and while the book didn't go into it as much as I was hoping, the world Ms. Balog built was solid and interesting. I loved the new paranormal angle and that this was ultimately a love story.

Sleepless is a quick read with characters you'll want to root for and an interesting paranormal angle. If you are looking for a light paranormal romance with good characterization, this novel is most certainly for you. I'd recommend picking this one up. While it won't leave you breathless, it'll definitely cut into your bed time!


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