A mostly Young Adult book review blog run by a mother and daughter team.
Before I Wake by C.L. Taylor is one of those books where readers will embark on an emotional roller coaster ride. The story flips from main character, Susan Jackson’s, past to present day. The main objective is to figure out why her daughter, Charlotte, jumped in front of a bus.
As a devoted and loving mother, Susan does whatever it takes to unravel the mystery of her daughter’s incident, even if it means re-visiting a past that she ran away from a long time ago.
There were many elements in Before I Wake by C.L. Taylor that I enjoyed. I love when books go back into the past to give readers that background needed for the book. In this case, it was going by using a diary that was kept by the main character.
The story was written in such a way that the reader (aka me!) was doubting their own judgment. I, for one, honestly thought that Susan was going out of her mind and was witnessing her downward spiral.
I struggled with some of the things I was reading in the book, but only because I have never personally lived through anything that Susan lived through. I couldn’t understand why she just wouldn’t leave her douchy, abusive boyfriend. I couldn’t understand why she kept forgiving him when all his actions and words were so obviously a warning!
As a mother, I can completely understand her hardheaded ways when trying to get the information that she needs to try and figure out the mystery behind her daughter’s accident. But would I be ballsy enough to do what she did? Like go to a club and be embarrassed by the very people who hold the answers?
The writing was pretty solid, and the characters were believable. I will admit that the author does a fantastic job of convincing readers of just how crazy and manipulative James is. The more the story goes on, a little more of his mask is revealed and in the end, you are 100% in hate with this character.
I would recommend Before I Wake by C.L. Taylor to fans of psychological thrillers. Although a little predictable, readers will appreciate the intense relationships in the story, and the undeniable love of a mother for her daughter.