Sleep No More, by Jayne Ann Krentz

January 11, 2023 Book Reviews 11 ★★★½

Sleep No More, by Jayne Ann KrentzSleep No More by Jayne Ann Krentz
Series: Lost Night Files #1
Published by Berkley on January 3, 2023
Genres: Paranormal romantic suspense
Pages: 332
Format: Kindle or ebook
Source: the publisher
Purchase: Amazon | Book Depository | Bookshop | Barnes & Noble | Audible
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three-half-stars
Also by this author: Copper Beach, Dream Eyes, River Road, Secret Sisters, Eye of the Beholder, Lost and Found, Sharp Edges, When All the Girls Have Gone, Smoke in Mirrors, Falling Awake, Hidden Talents, All Night Long, Untouchable, The Vanishing

Seven months ago, Pallas Llewellyn, Talia March, and Amelia Rivers were strangers, until their fateful stay at the Lucent Springs Hotel. An earthquake and a fire partially destroyed the hotel, but the women have no memory of their time there. Now close friends, the three women co-host a podcast called the Lost Night Files, where they investigate cold cases and hope to connect with others who may have had a similar experience to theirs—an experience that has somehow enhanced the psychic abilities already present in each woman.

After receiving a tip for their podcast, Pallas travels to the small college town of Carnelian, California, to explore an abandoned asylum. Shaken by the dark energy she feels in the building, she is rushing out when she’s stopped by a dark figure—who turns out to be the women's mysterious tipster.

Ambrose Drake is certain he’s a witness to a murder, but without a body, everyone thinks he’s having delusions caused by extreme sleep deprivation. But Ambrose is positive something terrible happened at the Carnelian Sleep Institute the night he was there. Unable to find proof on his own, he approaches Pallas for help, only for her to realize that Ambrose, too, has a lost night that he can’t remember—one that may be connected to Pallas. Pallas and Ambrose conduct their investigation using the podcast as a cover, and while the townsfolk are eager to share what they know, it turns out there are others who are not so happy about their questions—and someone is willing to kill to keep the truth from coming out.

I received a review copy of this book from the publisher.

This book contains mature content and may not be suitable for younger readers.

Fun rehash of previous plots

Sleep No More kicks off the Lost Night Files, a trilogy of books about three women whose psychic talents were apparently enhanced after a mysterious night none of them can remember.

Ambrose Drake is convinced he witnessed a murder while a patient at a sleep clinic. Or at least, he witnessed the cleanup. But without evidence, he can’t be sure. When a member of the clinic’s staff goes missing after contacting Ambrose, he contacts the Lost Night Files podcasters to investigate. The one who shows up is Pallas Llewellyn, an interior designer whose career has been derailed by her need to find out what happened on her “lost night.”

It turns out that Ambrose, like Pallas and her friends, also experienced an increase in his talent (in his case, reading auras) after a similar lost night… which has been affecting his sleep, as well as his writing career. The pair set out to solve the mystery of the missing man and uncover a lot more than they anticipated.

I really debated how to rate Sleep No More. It’s a fun, quick read, and I enjoyed it on the whole. However, the typically convoluted plot doesn’t hang together quite as well as in most of Krentz’s books, the banter is not as witty or sharp, and much of the novel felt like a rehash of various plot and character elements from previous books. For instance, if you are familiar with Krentz’s books, particularly the Arcane Society and Fogg Lake series, you’ll immediately see parallels with the Nightshade organization and their talent-enhancing formula. I suspect the series may tie in with the Arcane novels eventually, if only tangentially. (There’s even a Jones in the book, albeit briefly and in flashback.)

Another problem I had is that while the prologue does a good job of setting up Ambrose’s backstory and motivation, the same isn’t true of Pallas. In her case, Krentz keeps dropping hints about a similar experience in Pallas’s past, but for too long, I felt I was in the dark regarding the traumautic experience Pallas shared with her fellow podcasters — her main motivation throughout the book. (Note that the publisher’s synopsis leads with that incident, but the reader shouldn’t have to rely on a blurb to figure out what’s going on.)Structurally, I think the book might work better with two prologues, one from each main character’s POV. I do understand why Krentz didn’t lead with Pallas’s lost night; it may be her motivation, but it’s not the central plot of Sleep No More, although it will probably turn out to be the main focus of the overall series arc. But it would have helped to have the information sooner.

So all in all, a fun entry in the Krentz canon, but not one of her best. Still, I’m looking forward to the next installment!

Reading this book contributed to these challenges:

  • COYER Upside-Down 2023: Chapter 1
  • NetGalley & Edelweiss Reading Challenge 2023
three-half-stars

About Jayne Ann Krentz

The author of over 40 consecutive New York Times bestsellers, JAYNE ANN KRENTZ writes romantic-suspense, often with a psychic and paranormal twist, in three different worlds: Contemporary (as Jayne Ann Krentz), historical (as Amanda Quick) and futuristic (as Jayne Castle). There are over 30 million copies of her books in print.

She earned a B.A. in History from the University of California at Santa Cruz and went on to obtain a Masters degree in Library Science from San Jose State University in California. Before she began writing full time she worked as a librarian in both academic and corporate libraries.

Ms. Krentz is married and lives with her husband, Frank, in Seattle, Washington.

Pseudonyms: Jayne Ann Krentz, Amanda Quick, Stephanie James, Jayne Bentley, Jayne Taylor, Amanda Glass.

Reading this book contributed to these challenges:

  • COYER Upside-Down 2023: Chapter 1
  • NetGalley & Edelweiss Reading Challenge 2023

11 Responses to “Sleep No More, by Jayne Ann Krentz”

  1. Peggy Murphy

    Having a hard time getting into this book. Usually I devour Krentz, but not this time.

    • Lark_Bookwyrm

      I wondered if it was just me, but apparently not. Well, not every book can be a home run! I will say, though, that if you hang in there, things become somewhat clearer.

    • Lark_Bookwyrm

      I imagine it’s hard to avoid that when you have written as many books as she has! Especially when what your readers want is usually “more of the same.” (I’m guilty of that, myself.)

    • Lark_Bookwyrm

      For straightforward romantic suspense, try River Road or All Night Long. Sharp Edges is also pretty good. For a slightly paranormal edge, try Light in Shadow, followed by Truth or Dare (Whispering Springs #1 and 2.) And if you want to get into her decidedly paranormal romantic suspense (i.e., strong psychic talents; there are no vampires, witches, or shifters), try White Lies, followed by Sizzle and Burn (books #2 and #3 of the Arcane Society series.) Book #1, Second Sight, was written under Krentz’s Amanda Quick pen name, and takes place in the Victorian era; you can read it before or after #2 and #3. The first 8 books are spread between the Krentz and Quick pen names & timelines, and involve the past and present of the Arcane Society. You don’t absolutely have to read them in order, and most if them can stand alone &mdash. But if you like them, and if you get that far, read some of her Ghost Hunter series (written as Jayne Castle) before you tackle the 9th Arcane novel, because you really do need some background on the world before diving into Midnight Crystal.

  2. Katherine

    I liked this book a bit better than you though I definitely see the parallels. I think I’ve read several books lately where the characters just can’t communicate and be honest with each other so to see this couple actually talk and tell the truth was so refreshing that it bumped it up for me!

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