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on 8 August 2017
Good buy
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on 24 September 2017
Very good book I enjoyed our twist
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on 5 March 2017
Excellent
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on 27 June 2017
Excellent read
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on 27 July 2015
As one of the early books I did not really enjoy this novel I am a great fan of Ruth Rendell and this for me fell far short/
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on 31 March 2014
This is probably about the fourth time I've read 'Sleeping Life' and it is one of my favourite of Ruth Rendell's Wexford novels, certainly my favourite from this period. It has its flaws of course - the denouement is one of Rendell's most outrageous, one of her really original plots but much of it seems very improbable. Nevertheless, it IS very original and a cracking good tale. The contrast between quiet Kingsmarkham and sophisticated London (once more represented by Wexford's well know 'Kenbourne Vale' parish) is enjoyable and there are several quirky characters, not least the victim herself! Wexford's own family play a slightly larger role from this novel forward - this is the first time we get to learn much about less favoured elder daughter Sylvia - but they don't dominate (as sometimes happens later). Wexford himself as very human in this one - see how he pities the murderer in the end - although his run-ins with comedy Chief Constable Griswold are becoming a little tedious, its a mistake trying to make Reg into a 'maverick cop'.

Overall, very enjoyable and one of her best - in my opinion.
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on 12 November 2013
I cheat! I read this some years ago and it has lost none of its appeal. Ruth Rendell is a superb storyteller, her plots are intriguing and her 'lead' characters are attractive, all contributing to to the best in the entertainment obtainable from books.
Matthew Smith
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on 7 August 2008
The central character leaves a provincial town to churn out a series of steadily selling middlebrow novels - now who does that remind me of? This is almost a good book. It has an ingenious mystery at its heart, and Rendell has obviously visited the locations she uses (a rather grim London suburb, a "new-rich" mansion with mirrored walls), a Victorian villa that's seen better days, and taken notes on characters she's observed (a cute Indian girl, a dim gay wine bar owner) but the whole novel seems bolted together from these components. Wexford and his wife Dora and sidekick Burden stubbornly refuse to come to life. And a clunky "relevant" plot strand about women's lib (this is 1979) is dragged in to provide a clue. The whole thing was done much better by Josephine Tey in To Love and Be Wise.
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on 29 March 2015
According to the 'Daily Mirror', Ruth Rendell is one of Britain's top-selling crime novelists. That doesn't say much for the others as this book was boring and cheaply written. Although the plot is unconventional, it is hardly of Agatha Christie calibre. I don't know why I stayed with the book until the end.
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on 20 June 2013
I thoroughly enjoyed this book. Good light reading, yet very well written in true Rendell style. Plausible plot. Better than just a holiday read.
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