Traveling Sisters Book Reviews

Traveling together through books. Join us on our adventures through the books we read

Are You SleepingAre You Sleeping by Kathleen Barber

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Norma’s Review

Traveling Sisters Group Read with Brenda, Kaceey, & Lindsay!

3.5 stars rounded up to 4 stars

ARE YOU SLEEPING by KATHLEEN BARBER is a clever, suspenseful, creative, and a somewhat predictable psychological thriller novel that was uniquely told with podcast excerpts and social media feeds which added a very interesting aspect to this storyline for me. The way that this story was told and the format of this book is what I found most enjoyable.

KATHLEEN BARBER delivers a well-written and character-driven novel here that takes us on a journey of solving the murder of Josie’s father from 13 years ago that has attracted the attention of the media. I really enjoyed Josie and Lainie’s characters.

This isn’t particularly what I would call a fast-paced or gripping thriller but KATHLEEN BARBER wrote a very readable story here and I really enjoyed and found the dysfunction of the family quite interesting and it was hard to put down. Would recommend to anyone that likes a thriller on the lighter side with lots of betrayal, secrets, lies, and familial dynamics within the storyline.

Thank you so much to NetGalley, the publisher and Kathleen Barber for the opportunity to read an advanced copy of this book in exchange for a review.


Brenda’s Review

I read this one along with my Traveling Sisters and enjoyed our short discussions.  Time wasn’t really in our favour with this one and we mostly read it on our own. So for this review I will focus on my thoughts.

Are You Sleeping was a nice surprise for me and I really enjoyed the lighter side to this story yet a little chilling and unsettling at the same time.  It’s a story with hidden family secrets and betrayals that has caught the attention of the media. I really enjoyed what I called the Poppy Pods (podcasts) and liked that unique twist to the story.  I thought Kathleen Barber gave us a good look into how the media and their audience can latch on and become obsessed with their views and how their reactions can affect a person.  I could really see how that affected our main character Josie in this story and I could really feel for her.

I had a love/hate relationship here with Josie and I have to say she was not my favorite twin sister in this story.  I really felt more for her sister Lanie and I thought Josie was not the best sister either.  Josie had me so angry at her at times and I really wanted to shout at her  to change her behaviour to her sister.

Like Norma’s thoughts I didn’t find this story gripping or fast-paced. I did enjoy the story and found it quite interesting.  I recommend for a interesting lighter read.

Thank you to NetGalley, Gallery Books and Kathleen Barber for the opportunity read and review this book.


Kaceey’s Review

An unscrupulous reporter, Poppy Parnell starts a podcast to reopen the murder case of  Charles Buhrman and it quickly goes viral. His two daughters, Josie and twin sister Lanie haven’t spoken to each other since the day of the murder. A horrid event that sadly tore the family apart along the way.

Now, years later, the recent death of their mother is bringing them back together. Can Josie let go of the past and reunite with her sister?

Told from Josie’s perspective, as well as Poppies’ pod-casts and the avalanche of tweets that followed. Then the ensuing crazed masses getting caught up in an internet witch-hunt.

This book highlights how social media can influence people, creating a frenzy in whatever direction the cursor is pointed. While this pseudo-power can be applied for good, or in many cases, for pure sensationalism at the expense of those the spotlight is on.

This is a very quick and easy read that kept me guessing through most of the book. I did figure out the curve-ball before the end but still enjoyed getting there. I enjoyed the ride and would certainly recommend it. To me, this book would make a great light vacation/ beach….mountain getaway kind of read!

A traveling sister read with Norma, Brenda and Lindsay!

Thank you to NetGalley, Gallery Books and Kathleen Barber for an advanced copy to read in exchange for an honest review.


Lindsay’s Review

3.5 stars!

I enjoyed this suspenseful, gripping, page-turning debut psychological thriller!

This story follows the main character, Josie, through the reassessment of her father’s murder case from thirteen years prior.  Investigative reporter, Poppy Parnell, creates and releases six mega-hit podcasts titled “Reconsidered” that re-examine this murder trial.  Through the podcasts, Parnell asks questions to  uncover facts and theories which end up reopening the case that was ‘solved’ years ago.   Was the convicted killer who has been sitting in prison since the trial actually innocent?

I loved the format of this book and the way this story was presented.  I liked reading from Josie’s perspective. The six podcasts along with several blog posts and interviews are included throughout the chapters.  This provided a unique and refreshing reading perspective which I greatly enjoyed.

I found myself glued to the pages for the majority of this engrossing story, however, the ending didn’t quite live up to the excitement of the rest of the book for me.  It was still a good, satisfying ending, but not as excellent as the rest of the novel.   Things seemed to wrap up a little too quick and neat for me.  Overall, I enjoyed this fast-paced and creative story and would be very interested in reading more from this author!   This was an impressive debut novel.

A big thank you to NetGalley, Threshold Pocket Books and Kathleen Barber for providing an ARC in exchange for an honest review!!

2 thoughts on “Traveling Sisters Group Review: Are You Sleeping by Kathleen Barber @katelizabee @GalleryBooks

  1. Lindsay says:

    Loved reading this with you Norma and Brenda! I really loved the layout of this book – very unique! I’ll always think of Brenda’s “Poppy pods” haha!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I will always think of this book too with Brenda’s “Poppy Pods” comment! 😂


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