cover image Insomnia


Sarah Pinborough. Morrow, $27.99 (336p) ISBN 978-0-06-285684-5

In this gripping if flawed domestic thriller from British author Pinborough (Behind Her Eyes), Leeds solicitor Emma Averell sees her enviable existence start to implode days before she turns 40, the age at which her mother’s psychotic breakdown shattered their family. As Emma struggles with insomnia, her mind races with obsessive thoughts—what if she really is going off the rails like her mother? Increasingly exhausted, she bungles client conferences and snaps at her stay-at-home husband, Robert, and their two children. Emma loses it when an emergency call from her estranged older sister, Phoebe, tricks her into a situation that lands her in a murder investigation. She becomes convinced she’s being gaslighted by either Phoebe or Robert, who kicks her out of the house because of professed concern about the impact her deteriorating mental state is having on their kids. As she strives to figure out who’s trying to destroy her and why, the suspense becomes almost unbearable. Only a paranormal-tinged deus ex machina to tie up the unruly plot twists disappoints. Readers should be prepared for a page-turner that at times is too unsettling to be thoroughly enjoyable. Agent: Grainne Fox, Fletcher & Co. (Apr.)