I’ve had so many different emotions reading While I Was Sleeping by Dani Atkins. And I’m still not sure how to feel about one character! This is the first novel I’ve read by this author but it won’t be my last.
- Paperback: 560 pages
- Publisher: Simon & Schuster UK (23 Aug. 2018)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1471165930
- ISBN-13: 978-1471165931
I don’t remember what happened or what has changed.
I can still hear your voices but you can’t seem to hear me.
I was about to be married and had everything to look forward to.
Now I have to find a way back – to you, to our family, to us.
It’s hard to write a review when there is so much intrigue with the blurb and it shares very little about the story. This may be a short review because if I said what I want to say there will be spoilers and I don’t want to do that!
There is one simple thing that makes a huge difference to this story (in my opinion) and that is hearing Maddie’s narrative first. When it came to Chloe’s narrative I thought oh no, I’m going to have all the feels for her now. But NO! I was loyal to Maddie. She had my heart. It gave her an advantage. So when the rest of the story unfolds, at first, I felt hatred. I felt like the worst person in the world to wish so much harm. In fact, the strength of my feelings surprised me. When things become friendlier, I felt it but from a distance because still my underlying emotions were critical. Despite knowing that life changes both on an emotional and practical level and looking at it logically I still couldn’t change how I felt. There was no question in my mind who the ‘victim’ was. I’m still wondering though if there is a second best or are all things equal and just different? Can you live a life trusting that the universe won’t take it all away? How powerful is that! What skill Dani Atkins has to provoke such strong feelings with her words. Beautiful prose it is too.
Another thing that I loved are the ambiguous statements – another thought is put in your mind and you think surely not, she wouldn’t do that to her characters would she? Well …
While I Was Sleeping is a story about sacrifice, compromise, family and love. It’s about the complexity of emotions both on a filial and intimate level. It’s about putting ego aside for the greater good of all.
I’ve no doubt this will be a big hit for many readers as it was for me because simply put, it’s an outstanding story.
Connect with Dani Atkins
Read all posts in the contemporary fiction genre on Jera’s Jamboree.
Simon & Schuster UK on Jera’s Jamboree.