Synopsis from Macmillan Publishers:
A murder she doesn’t remember committing. A killer she doesn’t remember meeting. Megan Goldin’s Stay Awake is an electrifying novel that proves memory can be deadly.
Liv Reese wakes up in the back of a taxi with no idea where she is or how she got there. When she’s dropped off at the door of her brownstone, a stranger answers—a stranger who claims to live in her apartment. She reaches for her phone to call for help, only to discover it’s missing. In its place is a bloodstained knife. Her hands are covered in scribbled messages, like graffiti on her skin: STAY AWAKE.
Two years ago, Liv was thriving as a successful writer for a trendy magazine. Now, she’s lost and disoriented in a New York City that looks nothing like what she remembers. Catching a glimpse of the local news, she’s horrified to see reports of a crime scene where the victim’s blood has been used to scrawl a message across a window, similar to the message that’s inked on her hands. What did she do last night? And why does she remember nothing from the past two years? Liv finds herself on the run for a crime she doesn’t remember committing. But there’s someone who does know exactly what she did, and they’ll do anything to make her forget—permanently.
A complex thriller that unfolds at a breakneck speed, Stay Awake will keep you up all night.
About: Stay Awake is a psychological thriller written by Megan Goldin. It will be published on 8/9/2022 by St. Martin’s Press, an imprint of Macmillan Publishers, ebook, 352 pages. The genres are mystery thriller, psychological thriller, adult fiction, and contemporary. I have read all 3 books from the author: The Escape Room, The Night Swim, and this one Stay Awake and loved them all. According to Macmillan’s website, “St. Martin’s Press has a long and respected history of publishing a solid and varied list. We are dedicated to publishing emerging new authors, and offering a fresh perspective on classic genres, while maintaining a diverse and interesting range of books.” Please see below for more information about the author and publisher.
My Experience: I started reading Stay Awake on 5/28/2022 and finished it on 7/3/2022. An interesting read for sure! I haven’t read a story where a character suffered memory loss or sleep conditions such as this. Honestly, I was a bit confused at first. However, the story was easy to read and easy to follow that kept me turning the pages. It was fascinating that this story referenced to Agatha Christie’s memory loss. With regards to fiction books, I wasn’t sure if this reference was true or false so I googled on Agatha Christie and Wikipedia informed me the same as what was referring in this book! I have only read the author’s And Then There Were None and loved it so it was exciting to see the mention of the author experiencing the same condition as the main character in this story! I liked how smart and quick thinking the main character Liv was. Ted sounds like a great guy as well as Harry. I can’t imagine living life with this medical condition but it was good to see how a person could attempt to live a normal life by following doctor’s advice.
This book started with Liv at 2:40am. She woke up in a cab with no memory of how she got there. Somehow she got cash to pay for the fare but no purse or the keys to her apartment she shared with Amy. When the cab driver dropped her off at her apartment, she rang the bell for Amy to let her in but met with a stranger couple. They let her in to use their phone to call her boyfriend. When Liv entered their apartment she noticed that the apartment no longer looked like hers. She decided to take a cab to her boyfriend’s place. She dig around her pockets and found cash for the ride and an unexpected surprise in her sweater pocket. She saw notes on her hands with the name of a bar so she decided to stop by the bar first. The second view was Darcy, Detective. She responded to the police call, 6th floor apartment to find a dead man in bed with an apparent stab wound. They estimated that he may have been drugged because it doesn’t look like he put up the fight when he was attacked. Liv again woke up at a park bench and had no memory what had happened previously except for seeing the notes on her hand. The story then changed direction starting with Liv two years earlier when she was dating Marco and roommate with Amy. Things started happening with her but she had no recollection that she did it, such as picking up dry cleaning clothes. After she woke up from the bench, she went into her job but didn’t recognize the layout and the coworkers. After a few blunders, Liv realized two years have passed by and she didn’t know why. The story told in a timeline. In present day, Liv found herself restarting the day with no memory each time she woke up at odd places like park bench or train. The alternative view was the police detective investigating a crime. The story switched to the past followed Liv’s life before the incident. All evidence at the murder scene pointed to Liv, but Liv couldn’t remembered if she had killed anyone.
Stay Awake was well written and a fast paced read! Each time I read this story I didn’t want to put it down. But life got in the way and I didn’t get to read it as often. This is the only thriller where I able to guess who the killer was. I still loved the read despite knowing who killed. I enjoyed the detective’s investigations. That art exhibit was really out there freaky. How did the author think of that idea?! I also enjoyed the mini cliffhangers at each chapter. The randomness of the stalker’s acts was definitely odd. I can see why police wouldn’t take the report seriously. I wonder if there will be a sequel for this book because that bad police Krause should get in trouble for his slack in investigations. This book was an excellent read and I recommend everyone to read it.
I rate it 5 stars!
About the Author:
MEGAN GOLDIN, author of THE ESCAPE ROOM and THE NIGHT SWIM, worked as a correspondent for Reuters and other media outlets where she covered war, peace, international terrorism and financial meltdowns in the Middle East and Asia. She is now based in Melbourne, Australia where she raises three sons and is a foster mum to Labrador puppies learning to be guide dogs. (Photo and info obtained from Macmillan’s website).
More Information about St. Martin’s Press
*** Many thanks to St. Martin’s Press and NetGalley for the opportunity to read and review. Please be assured that my opinions are honest.