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Review: Sleepless by Cyn Balog

S l e e p l e s s
Author: Cyn Balog (TwitterSite)
Release Date: 7/13/10 (Hardcover)
Publisher: Delacorte Books for Young Readers
Age Group: Young Adult (13+)
Pages: 224
Source: Library (Local)
Go Buy It: AmazonBarnes&Noble
Overall Feelings: Deliciously sweet and engaging!
Summary: Goodreads

Julia & Eron:
"He pries the watch quickly from my fingers and stuffs it back into his pocket.
'Can I see that again?' I motion for him to hand it over...'Did that say...1908?'
He doesn't answer...
Back on the television, House is ranting. I watch for a few minutes, then I remember. The weird outfit Eron was wearing when I first met him. The way he talks. The fact that a remote control is a foreign concept to him. He acts like he just arrived in a time machine...
He turns to me. 'Yes?'
It's only then that I realize I'm staring at him, my mouth half open...'Um. Just wondering if you would like some...um, Cheez-Its.'
He wrinkles his nose. 'Pardon?'
I gulp. Lack of Cheez-It recognition. Not a good sign. 'Maybe some Oreos?'
I mean, everyone has to know Milk's Favorite Cookie, right?
Not right. He's looking at me like I sprouted wings. Oh, hell no" (166-167).

Sleepless...Sandmen...magic sleep-inducing powder... what a unique, phenomenal, and refreshing concept! In YA, it's so hard to find originality or at least a small dose of it, and with everything being vampires, werewolves, and what have you, reading something else that veers away from all that... It's an absolutely sensational change!

Cyn Balog's Fairy Tale had been a fairly bittersweet read for me, so truthfully I was bracing myself for the same with Sleepless, but what I got instead was a fine, wonderful tale of moving on, living life no matter what happens... A story revolving around an endearing, magnanimous guy and a heartbreaking-ly sad, emotionally wounded girl, who come together in the most unconventional way, enduring many troublesome obstacles in the forms of a coarse, offensive ex, sandmen ramifications, and a manipulative, lonely Original mentor of the sandmen, and much much more...Gosh, how wordy does that sound! *laughs*

Being that Balog's Sleepless is a relatively short novel (it is only two hundred somethin' pages) I didn't anticipate the lovely characterizations of the colorful assortment of individuals swelling within her pages. Besides Eron and Julia, the two main leads, I also sympathized with Brent, Julia's best friend, and Griffin, Julia's boyfriend, two seriously wrecked people filled with bitter pasts and abusive tendencies. Chimere, Eron's mentor, is another that leaves a peculiar ache inside me; I feel tremendously sorry for her.
Eron & Chimere:
"'You wanted me to fail, didn't you? You wanted me to stay here, forever...'
[Chimere] tilts her face up to the moonlight and for the first time I see that her eyes are wet. 'You have always been my favorite. My pet. I can't bear to imagine my existence without you' (186)."
Going back to Julia and Eron (because I just can't seem to help myself^^)... What a beautiful couple they make! These two compliment each other so well it moves me! Julia has suffered a horrible, traumatic event that lingers in her and has become the absorbee of derogatory remarks and disrespect from her dearly departed boyfriend and a forever drunk, broken best friend. So, that makes Eron completely perfect for her, being that he comes from a different time period when most men were gentlemen, cordial, and respectful, all great aspects of a person for Julia to be exposed to. More than that, Eron is just naturally sweet, shy, and protective, all excellent traits in a guy (regardless of the heroine, I might add)!
"...I try to right myself, but she doesn't let go. Her soft lips touch mine. I realize that this is no accident. This is what she wants.
When she pulls away, I lie there, stunned, before scrambling to my feet. Finally experiencing something he's waited over a hundred years for will do that to a person" (194). *Ah, so adorable!*
Sleepless had great structure, an intriguing plot that never let me fall tired with it or grow bored. I enjoyed just about every aspect of this novel, watching as Eron acclimated to his surroundings, the times, seeing Julia happier despite all she's been through, looking on as this amazing pair move forward. It even had a terrific, heartwarming closing that left me unable to become frustrated or annoyed, but instead utterly satisfied.
*A little spoilery: you've been warned!* Julia & Eron:
"I bite my lip. '...You know how I like my sleep.'
'I do, all too well,' he says. He reaches over, cups my face in his hands, and kisses me long and slow on the lips. My toes curl. 'I wish you sweet dreams.'
I smile. That's what you are. My sweetest dream, come true" (215).
I am overjoyed that Balog's second novel is so fantastic... In fact, I cannot freaking wait until the release of the third, Starstruck, coming next year. Don't want to miss out on a lovely YA paranormal love story? Then pick up a copy of Cyn Balog's second title, Sleepless!

Thanks for reading!

Coming up in 2011, is Cyn Balog's
(releasing 7/12/11)


Eleni @ La Femme Readers said...

Nice review! I really enjoyed this one. :P I'm excited for Starstruk.