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Sleeping Dog Paperback – 1 Sep 2004

4.2 out of 5 stars 5 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 242 pages
  • Publisher: Sparkleberry Books; paperback / softback edition (Sept. 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0954818504
  • ISBN-13: 978-0954818500
  • Product Dimensions: 16.6 x 10.8 x 2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 5,371,670 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

A dark and pacey read. -- Buxton Advertiser

Sleeping Dog is an exciting fantasy of a story that will keep literary thriller fans guessing until the end. -- The Big Issue Cymru

Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.

Etta lay where she had fallen, soon she would be as cold as the worn slates of the kitchen floor. Above her, a calm hand wrapped two small pieces of magnetic ironstone in oak leaves and began to bind the wrapping with a thin leafless strip of ivy.
The sun blazed through the large rotten windows to the man’s right, but no one was likely to be on the moor today and if they were, all they would see would be a figure at the window of a farmhouse.
He crouched down and placed the stones into the top pocket of Etta’s overalls. He had watched her heart stop pumping and vividly seen her body fall, as a boulder into a pond whose surface had been calm for too many years. Placing one hand over the secreted stones he spoke in Welsh, "Deliver unto me my enemies."
The barren house held no more interest for now and he left by the front door.

Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

By A Customer on 11 Nov. 2004
Format: Paperback
OK, I'm not going to hide the fact - I enjoyed this book more than any other that I've read - possibly since wuthering heights at school. The author uses a lot of themes from the mabinogion but doesn't seem to spend an age telling us how much he knows, or waste time on over poetic descriptions. Scenes seem to be set in a few words and keep the fast pace of the story going, without me ever being in doubt as to where I was. Its a book that completely absorbed me. And a double ending that made me think I was clever the first time then made me realise I was wrong all along. It's nasty in bits, and a little romantic as well. I don't like fantsy and this managed, for me at least, to remain a gothic horror.
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Format: Paperback
I just finished reading this, and then read the other reviews on here. I don't realy agree with any of them - the setting is a little "Wuthering Heights" but the story isn't. The end of the book doesn't make me feel as if the author lost interst - it makes me realise their was a plan all along - the books not called sleeping dog for nothing. It is as rotgut says written more as a who dunnit than a horror. I think this makes it a stronger book - more original. I don't know much about the mabinogion, but I did like this story which I think owes a lot to Dracula but without the epistotle style.
One fault though - the back cover describes the story as believable and whilst this may be true of the characters and setting - there is a strong element of fantasy to the horror.
Overall - a clever story, well told although some might object to the sadism.
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By A Customer on 30 Dec. 2004
Format: Paperback
The plot has a wealth of twists and turns which held my attention and act to gradually draw all the characters into play. I have found in the past with this sort of genre that the characters in many books are too transparent, this is certainly not an accusation I could cast about this book. I was kept guessing right to the end, a more experienced reader of the thrillers may have picked up some of the clues, they are certainly all there as a second reading of the book confirmed.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
`Sleeping Dog' by R. A. Sharpe offers a horror set in the modern day and uses one of the Welsh Mabinogion stories as a backdrop.

The novel started off with a decent pace to maintain interest, and slowly pulled me in with its realistic settings and believable characters. While the Mabinogion is a good background, the book's strength is the quality of its plotting and characterisation which kept me turning the pages.

The flavour of the Welsh stories are faithfully maintained. Sharpe also weaves modern witches seamlessly into the plot.

The storyline has enough twists to keep the reader guessing, but not so many that it seemed to sway all over the place.

I have read reviews that complain about the gore, and it's probably fair to say Sharpe doesn't pull his punches in regard to letting blood flow. I did think most of the violence was in context, but the book probably wouldn't have suffered from this aspect being toned down a little.

In all, this was a read that kept me engrossed. If I have any complaints it's to do with the presentation and editing - there were regular glitches and errors that I suspect can't all be blamed on the electronic formatting. These did annoy me in several places, but not enough make me want to stop reading.
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By Rotgut VINE VOICE on 17 Jan. 2005
Format: Paperback
A retelling, or, more accurately, a reinterpretation of one of the older and more impenetrable of the stories of "The Mabinogion" is to be admired, for nerve if nothing else. In this Fantasy/Horror novel, "Pwyll, Lord Of Dyved" is the inspiration for a fast paced romp full of good characterisation and memorable settings.
Some elements, e.g. Goth Vampires and modern day Wiccans, seem to jar with the Ancient Celtic Otherworldy Evil that our heores face, but generally the sense of growing, unseen menace is well sustained, and the book is structured like a detective story "whodunnit" rather than a horror yarn.
Sadly, the ending, featuring a "dog" rather than "god" from the machine, fails to live up to the earlier promise. Potentially interesting ideas about reincarnations of the archetypal figures from Welsh myth are lost in standard B-Movie gore and sadism.
It is difficult to read the closing scene, particularly, and avoid the feeling that the author just lost interest in his own story.
In all, the book has enough of interest to recommend it, but it could have been so much more memorable...maybe if one of the narratively stronger pieces from the Mabinogion would have been used, "Branwen", or "Gerient and Enid", the power of the original tales would have come through more clearly?
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