cover image The Edge of Sleep

The Edge of Sleep

Jake Emanuel and Willie Block, with Jason Gurley. St. Martin’s, $29 (304p) ISBN 978-1-250-28493-8

Adapted from the popular 2019 QCODE podcast of the same name, this dizzying debut posits sleep as a matter of life and death. Dave Torres, a night watchman, is no stranger to sleep problems, having suffered from chronic night terrors since childhood. The night of Independence Day, the coastal town of Santa Mira, Calif., along with the rest of the country, goes to sleep as usual. In the morning, Dave discovers that the streets are eerily quiet and empty; everyone except for Dave and his fellow insomniacs and night shift workers have died in their sleep. Joined by his best friend, Matteo; his ex, Katie; and Linda, an ER nurse, Dave works to understand this strange phenomenon—and struggles to stay awake. The line between dream and reality blurs when Dave realizes the answer lies within his terrifying nightmares, and he is forced to confront his inner demons to save himself and his loved ones. Though a fresh take on the apocalyptic genre, some of the elements undoubtedly worked better in audio form: a multitude of side characters and changing perspectives prove cumbersome to keep track of and the mystery leaves many threads dangling. Still, die-hard fans of the podcast are sure to be pleased. (June)