Cover Image: Second Sleep

Second Sleep

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Member Reviews

A lovely middle-grades novel. Readers will enjoy the magical realism of the “second sleep” and wish they could join in the dreams.

There were a few things that bothered me - the formal dialogue between the kids and that the adults in the book were not more worried about the protagonist’s missing mom.
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This book taught me I don't like magical realism. No matter how well-written, they're just never my favorite. Even for fans of the genre, the plot of this book was extremely flawed. It constantly sucked me out of the story. The whole premise is the idea of a "second sleep," where all of these kids from different time periods dream together. This magic is never explained or developed in a way that felt satisfying. How did "ageing out" work exactly? Why didn't the kids communicate more and colossally mess up the future (paradox, anyone?). Beyond the flaws of the plot, I also disliked the dialogue. All of the characters sounded like a professor, even the supposed children. Their reactions to events also seemed incredibly off. At one point the tone reminded me of a phycological thriller, with all of the kids heading towards some unspecified doom (which never happened). The entire subplot of the missing mother also made little sense and wasn't developed enough for my liking.

All in all, I don't see this book appealing to many. There are too many flaws that even the youngest of kids could point out and question. I'm sure someone would enjoy it. That someone just isn't me. #netgalley
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So good! It was completely beyond what I expected and I loved it. The story had me hooked the entire time. I was not expecting the plot twist, but how everything came together, in the end, was perfection!
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Gentle and a little melancholy is how I would describe this book. Definitely not in a bad way! A good read for day-dreamers.
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I have always enjoyed middle grade novels. I am older now, but I’m still reading and loving them! However I haven’t had a chance to review any until now. Second Sleep is a wonderful book. It has mystery, friendship, and touches of a dreamlike magic which makes sense since it’s all about dreams.
	Max and Rosie’s mother has disappeared. No one knows where she went, and no one knows when she will return. Without their mother Max, Rosie, and their father start drifting away from each other. So their grandmother suggests they visit the old log cabin their mother used to spend her summers in. The first night Max and Rosie travel in their dreams to a strangely beautiful place. They meet new friends that seem so real that they wonder whether it was actually a dream. Max slowly starts to realize that this wonderful dream world might be the key to finding his mother and bringing her home.
	This was such an interesting book, and honestly, I’m still trying to wrap my head around some of it. Max is trying to figure out how to navigate his life without his mother, and one of the things that really helped him was his friends in the dream world. I'm going to try and explain this, but I do think that half of the appeal is that it doesn't totally make sense. After all, magic is never as fun when it's explained all the way.
The dream world is filled with all the different kids who've spent summers in the lake. The fascinating thing though is that it's all the kids from years before. For example, Max befriends a girl named, Lila who is 40ish years old in his time. But in the dream world, Lila is the same age as Max. As the days go by, Max starts to realize that this dream world holds clues to his mother's disappearances. And it might even help him bring her home.
I thought that Ms. Stanley did an amazing job in keeping the plot moving with so many surprises. But I loved how there was a lot more emphasis on how much the characters were growing. The dream world was doing amazing things on Max and Rosie especially with the influence of their new friends. And the beautifulness of the nature around them. I would totally recommend this beautiful, magical book. There is a brief mention of a gay marriage.


I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book which I received from the publisher through Netgalley. All views expressed are only my honest opinion, a positive review was not required. 

I posted on Goodreads, Bookbub, and Barnes and Nobles on 05/22/2021. I will post on Amazon and blog closer to release date
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