This is my fist experience reading Greg Iles. Dead Sleep was recommended to me by a friend who also likes mystery and suspense novels. When I read the little blurb about the book I thought this was going to be quite the ride. Here is the Goodreads description:
An intricate and emotionally resonant story from one of the most versatile thriller writers at work today. Jordan Glass, a photojournalist on a well-earned vacation, wanders into a Hong Kong art museum and is puzzled to find fellow patrons eying her with curiosity. Minutes later, she stumbles upon a gallery containing a one-artist exhibition called "The Sleeping Women," a mysterious series of paintings that has caused a sensation in the world of modern art. Collectors have come to believe that the canvases depict female nudes not in sleep but in death, and they command millions at auction. When Jordan approaches the last work in the series, she freezes. The face in the painting seems to be her own. This unsettling event hurls her back into a nightmare she has fought desperately to put behind her - for, in fact, the face in the painting belongs not to Jordan but to her twin sister, murdered one year ago. At the urging of the FBI, Jordan becomes both hunter and hunted in a duel with the anonymous artist, a gifted murderer who knows the secret history of Jordan's family, and truths that even she has never had the courage to face.
This book started off really strong. The scene at the beginning where Jordan looks up into a painting and connects with her own eyes was really well written. From that point I was hooked. Her struggle with whether or not her sister was still alive and a new determination to figure out why she disappeared was great. The book was strong until about mid way through. Then it started to really slow down for me.
The things I didn’t care for was all the back story. I started to get bored because I couldn’t see what the point of all that information was. I didn’t need her whole childhood story to figure out there was tension between Jordan and her sister. I also didn’t need so much art talk. It’s got a lot of art jargon that just bored me. This could be an issue with just me. I’m not a fan of art. I can appreciate the skill it takes because I am a terrible artist, but outside of comic book art I just don’t seem to care. These parts in the story lost me a little and I just wanted to get back to the suspense.
What I did like about all of this was Greg Iles’s writing style. For my first book by him this was a good choice. It was suspenseful enough to make me want to keep going even through all of the slower parts. The ending did pick up so I was glad I stuck with the story to see how it turned out, even though it was rather predictable. I would give this book a solid 3 out of 5 stars. If there weren’t so many slower parts this would have definitely been a 4 star book just because of how much I enjoyed the beginning of it. You might wonder if I will be reading anything else by him and the answer would be yes. This may not have been my favorite book, but it was written well enough to peak my interest, and I would like to see if his books are as suspenseful as the book blurb claims.