From a Dead Sleep
John A. Daly
BQB Publishing (2013)
Reviewed by Paige Lovitt for Reader Views (12/13)
We begin John A. Daly’s “From a Dead Sleep” with Sean Coleman - the town loser. He has a job as a security guard because his uncle owns the business. He has one person who considers him a friend and that is a young man with autism. He just isn’t likeable. One thing he does have going for him, is a keen gift for observation. This gift usually gets him in trouble because he tends to go off the deep end and make false accusations against people. When Sean witnesses an unusual suicide, after waking up from being passed out in a ditch, no one believes him. Because the victim shot himself in the back of the head while jumping off a bridge, there is no body. Sean is sure that something funny is going on, and the only person that believes him is his young autistic friend, who also has a fantastic memory.
As events play out, Sean finds himself on the road out of town to find out information about the victim. Sean arrives at the wife’s house just in time to save her. When some dangerous people show up in Sean’s town and start causing trouble while they are looking for him, the townsfolk start thinking that he might have actually seen something for real this time. While he is away from home, Sean is finally able to step out of his shell as a loser. It doesn’t happen right away, but he manages to help save this woman and help solve the mystery of what happened to her husband. The truth goes much deeper than would be expected.
I totally enjoyed reading John A. Daly’s “From a Dead Sleep.” The author used creative writing techniques that make this a mystery/suspense that is very different from other books in this genre. I loved that he did this because, as the story progresses, he allows us to see what really happened before Sean even came into the picture. In doing so, it all makes sense. The author also does a wonderful job of creating characters and scenes that are quirky, yet believable. I loved watching Sean’s character evolve and emerge into the person that he should have been if he hadn’t allowed himself to get stuck in a negative role by everyone else’s opinion of him. I highly recommend this entertaining story.