Friday, September 7, 2018

When the Lights Go Out By Mary Kubica

Good morning, readers! Today I'm a stop on the TLC blog tour for Mary Kubica's latest, When the Lights Go Out.

Jessie Sloan's mother has died. She'd been sick for years, so long that Jessie had spent the latter part of high school and all of her adult life so far helping to care for her, putting her own plans on hold. But now it's time to move on. Time to get a place of her own (she can't bear to be in her home without her mother) and time to start thinking about her future. 

But when the college she's applied to calls to tell her that there's a problem with her social security information, Jessie's plans come to a screeching halt. Her attempts to clear up the matter only result in more questions, leaving her in a position where she must question everything she knows about her mother and her own past. But as she tries to unravel the mystery behind her own identity, insomnia sets in. And Jessie knows that she can only go so long without sleep. 

I've long heard that Mary Kubica was an author I needed to add to my reading plans. Unfortunately I think maybe this wasn't the best book for me to start with.

The book begins with Jessie's mother dying in the hospital. And Jessie has refused to sleep in case she missed her mother's final moments. But even in the wake of her mother's death, she still fights against sleep or flat out can't sleep at all.

She moves into a new apartment where she swears she hears things in the middle of the night, leaving her on guard. And then there's the problem with her school registration. Jessie never had a bank account and her job pays her in cash under the table, so she's never faced any issue associated with her social security number. But without her mom there to ask, it's left to her to figure it out. Her first step is to request her own birth certificate but apparently that's not possible either because she has so little information about herself, including her own father's identity.

With no family left and no one to turn to, Jessie's task is already a difficult one. But the lack of sleep makes everything so much more complicated.

Jessie's story is intriguing. And the insomnia aspects in particular appealed to me considering I'm a long time sufferer myself and can empathize with what she's going through. And her chapters alternate with a second story, that of a woman so desperate to have a child that she'd do anything.

The parallels between the two women in the story and their desperation are the driving force of the story, but the ultimate twist at the end was, to be honest, a let down. It's one I've seen too many times and one I've complained about almost as many times as I've seen it. I won't say what it is because I realize it's a personal opinion and I definitely don't want to spoil the book for anyone, but I was rolling along just fine and enjoying When the Lights Go Out until it was revealed. Which is a shame because for 95% of the book I could see exactly why so many people are fans of Kubica's work.

To see more stops on the tour be sure to check out the official TLC tour page here.

For more on Mary Kubica and her work you can visit her website here. You can also like her on Facebook and follow her on Twitter and Instagram.

Purchase Links: Amazon | Books-A-Million | Barnes & Noble


Dianna said...

Sorry you didn't like this one! The summary interests me. I can't imagine having insomnia, though. I'm the opposite, I'm always falling asleep!!

Heather J. @ TLC Book Tours said...

Thanks for being on the tour.