05 October 2011

63. Sleepyhead

Sleepyhead - Mark Billingham

This is a police-procedural type book. It is the first novel by this author and was a hit. A big enough hit to spawn an entire series of books starring Detective Inspector Tom Thorne.

It was a creepy book. Weird in that it had a person killing people, but his intent was not for them to die. His goal was to put them into a semi-comatose state where they were alive and aware, but unable to move or communicate with the world outside their own minds.

That raised an interesting legal question for me early on. If and when they catch the "killer" would he be tried for first degree pre-meditated murder when the intent was NOT to kill? Would it actually be second degree? Maybe even manslaughter with reckless endangerment if they got a super lawyer?

Another interesting part to this book was the character of Allison. She was a 24 year old woman who was the "killers" first success. She is actually in this semi-comatose state all through the book. That could make for a seriously boring character, but it was the opposite. I found her to be the most interesting person in the book. Every second or third chapter was Allison alone. It was Allison within her head. Her thoughts. Her frustrations. Her desires and triumphs and failures. Rational and irrational. It was fascinating. Allison's character very much reminded me of "Johnny Got His Gun". That one freaked me out.

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