Sweet Dreams by Tricia Sullivan (book review).

October 5, 2017 | By | Reply More

After volunteering for a drug experiment, Charlotte ‘Charlie’ Aaron becomes a narcoleptic, dropping asleep anywhere anytime. She also becomes a lucid dreamer, that is someone who stays conscious in her dreams and then into those of others who sleep nearby. Being a bit penniless, Charlie finds this can turn into a job that can make her some money by being able to enter people’s dreams as a form of therapist. The story is a sandwich of her diary, her workbook and an interview over the death of one of her clients, Melodie Tan, a harpist of some repute, before following the events in first person. It seems that she isn’t the only person to do this and someone she calls the Creeper can make these dreams real and people jump out of windows and roofs killing themselves. Charlie has to work out what is going on, making this something of a detective story and hence spoiler zone.

I have to confess I worked out who was the Creeper half-way through the book simply because there was misdirection in particular areas. Unless you’re good at problem solving, you’ll probably take longer and it certainly won’t stop you reading until the end.

Tricia Sullivan has a good grasp of character writing and only one of the supporting characters, Shandy, doesn’t get as much as she should considering she’s supposed to be her best friend. A bit paradoxically, she’s supposed to be Charlie’s best friend but kicked her out of her cupboard bedroom when she became skint which is a bit contradictory. Would you want to stay that friendly with someone like that? Sullivan certainly doesn’t treat any of her characters as fools. If anything, I think Charlie, as a narcoleptic, should have had more naps and her dialogue should have reflected that than be so coherent when awake but the reader might have adapted to reading this. Nevertheless, the book is a page-turner and someone will look at this and think it might make a good film.

GF Willmetts

October 2017

(pub: Gollancz. 313 page enlarged paperback. Price: £14.99 (UK), $21.99 (US), $24.99 (CAN). ISBN: 978-1-473-21299-2)

check out websites: www.orionbooks.co.uk, www.gollancz.com and www.triciasullivan.com

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Category: Books, Scifi

About the Author ()

Geoff Willmetts has been editor at SFCrowsnest for some 21 plus years now, showing a versatility and knowledge in not only Science Fiction, but also the sciences and arts, all of which has been displayed here through editorials, reviews, articles and stories. With the latter, he has been running a short story series under the title of ‘Psi-Kicks’ If you want to contribute to SFCrowsnest, read the guidelines and show him what you can do. If it isn’t usable, he spends as much time telling you what the problems is as he would with material he accepts. This is largely how he got called an Uncle, as in Dutch Uncle. He’s not actually Dutch but hails from the west country in the UK.

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