The Sleep Police by Jay Bonansinga

Originally posted to Audiobookreviewr.com

The sleep police

My only previous experience from Jay Bonansinga, as many others I’m sure, is THE WALKING DEAD novels. If you read them, or heard the audio version, the work speaks for itself, it’s very good. I got offered to review this for Audiobookreviewer.com by Paul, the man behind the great site, not even knowing it was available. I snagged it up, ready to get started.

The story focuses on Frank Janus, a veteran homicide detective with a troubled passed. He grew up with a crazy mother who warned her children that the Sleep Police came for young boys who stayed up too late. Having lost their father early, Frank and his brother became accustomed to seeing a string of “uncles” come through their mother’s bedroom. One night Frank walked in on his mother sitting at the ended of the bed, mumbling to herself, with a dead body laying in her room. Mrs. Janus was committed to a psychiatric facility. This drove Frank Janus to pursue a career in law enforcement and he devoted his life to it, becoming destined to carry the badge.

Ten years ago, a young Detective Janus come across a case that would haunt his life for the following decade, The Thumb Sucker killer. The case went cold, but not before it really messed with Janus’s mind; causing blackouts and forcing him to start seeing a psychiatrist. Now in his late thirties, he’s walking into an all too familiar scene with his partner, Sully Deitz, with a woman curled in the fetal position, a thumb in her mouth. The Thumb Sucker was back, and Frank thought he might be breaking. While working the case, Janus comes across a videotape that sends his world spinning. It was the killer, confessing everything to Sully Deitz, even his name. He called himself…The Sleep Police. After a long talk with therapist, Dr. Pope, Janus starts investigating himself in hopes he’s wrong. Things get worse for Frank; he finds another tape, gets arrested, escapes, blacks-out again, and has to call his ex-wife.

The narration was great in this book, as was the audio quality. I was unfamiliar with Paul Heitsch prior to this book but, he brought the story to life. He fit the story perfectly with good voices, easily identifiable, and read at a good speed (this may seem silly but if you’ve ever heard a slow narrator, you’ll understand it can be a bit tedious). I hope I come across some more of his work soon.

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