Review: Insomnia by J.R. Johansson

Author: J.R. Johansson
Series: The Night Walkers #1
Genre: Young Adult, Paranormal, Mystery
Publisher: Flux
Format: E-Book
Copy Provided By: Netgalley
Publication Date: June 8, 2013


It’s been four years since I slept, and I suspect it is killing me.

Instead of sleeping, Parker Chipp enters the dream of the last person he’s had eye contact with. He spends his nights crushed by other people’s fear and pain, by their disturbing secrets—and Parker can never have dreams of his own. The severe exhaustion is crippling him. If nothing changes, Parker could soon be facing psychosis and even death.

Then he meets Mia. Her dreams, calm and beautifully uncomplicated, allow him blissful rest that is utterly addictive. Parker starts going to bizarre lengths to catch Mia’s eye every day. Everyone at school thinks he’s gone over the edge, even his best friend. And when Mia is threatened by a true stalker, everyone thinks it’s Parker.

Suffering blackouts, Parker begins to wonder if he is turning into someone dangerous. What if the monster stalking Mia is him after all?

Insomnia, we've all experienced it at some point in our lives. You lay down, your body succumbing to exhaustion and yet try as you might your mind won't shut off. Desperate for precious sleep you try everything imaginable and yet the sleep you crave never comes. Parker Chipp hasn't slept in 4 years. Instead Parker spends his nights trapped in other peoples dreams. When Parker meets Mia he experiences the closest thing to a peaceful nights rest that he has had in years. Now he wants more and he'll stop at nothing to obtain it. 

Insomnia is a book that I had been really looking forward to reading.  The premise was so unique and I loved that the main character was a guy. The first few pages started out strongly. I found Parker's plight pitiable and wondered what could of caused his situation. However, the book starts to fall apart quite quickly. Parker is for lack of a better word a dick. I understand he hasn't slept in 4 years so naturally that would make him cranky but c'mon it's not like you really are trying to better your situation. If I hadn't slept that long I'd be begging my GP to put me in a medically induced coma so I could get some sleep. Ugh and then there is the way Parker treats others (especially his mom). Parker acts like he's the most unique, Ah-mazing person on the planet ever. To say he has a huge ego would be an understatement. Honestly, Parker might have been the worst main character I have ever read (even worse than Bella Swan and that is saying something). Nothing about him was pleasing to me and I just found myself more annoyed with the character as the book went on. 

On the other hand you have characters Addie and Finn. I liked Addie (until her justification of Parkers actions near the end) but I really found Finn to be the best character of them all. He was a good guy and I really liked how he wasn't afraid to put Parker in his place yet still remained loyal. Oh and I loved his funky T-Shirts. They were a nice touch to the character as well. I want some of them for my own.

Characters aside I think the worst part of Insomnia was that it couldn't decide if it wanted to be a Mystery, Paranormal or some other style book entirely. The story had no real direction and the ending was anti-climactic to say the least. I had guessed correctly who Mia's stalker was and even the death that happens is predictable.

Overall, I really had high hopes for Insomnia and had it even lived partially up to expectations I might still have called it a win read. However, I just didn't really like any aspect of the book. Parker was unlikable, the story almost glamorized stalking someone and the simple fact the book will have a sequel is almost nausea inducing. How this plot line can even handle another book is beyond me. It should have been left a stand alone. Maybe then with some real purpose and direction it could have been good. Though with Parker being the d-bag he is I don't think it would of ever been great. 

Final Verdict: Insomnia had a unique premise with great secondary characters. The writing was smooth and I found the world building OK. However, due to the highly unlikable MC and the lack of direction for the storyline I definitely recommend borrowing first before buying. With that being said, I will be rating Insomnia by J.R. Johansson ★★.

Want to learn more about this book or Author? Click the links below!

J.R. Johansson:

Flux Books


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