Before I Wake by Dee Henderson

3 stars

Dee Henderson’s newest release is another multi-layered suspense novel which keeps you guessing until the end.

Rae Gabriella is seeking refuge in the town of Justice, Illinois, trying to escape the memories from her former career as an FBI undercover agent and a case that went horribly wrong. Turning to her former boyfriend and now close friend, Bruce Chapel she takes up his offer to work alongside him as a private investigator and attempts to put her shattered life back together. When women start being murdered in Justice, Rae is asked to investigate by one of the distraught families and her skills and resolve are tested to the limit by a serial killer who leaves little if any evidence behind. The investigation introduces her to Sheriff Nathan Justice, a man dedicated to his town and intent on catching the killer. Nathan is reluctant to accept Rae’s involvement but his protective nature and budding attraction to her hit a higher level when it becomes clear she could be the killer’s next target.

The storyline of Before I Wake is much more complex and detailed than Dee’s earlier books and this is to be commended. The many twists and subtle clues keep the reader intrigued throughout the story and the perpetrator’s motives are hidden until the end which makes for a satisfying read. Once again the dialogue between her characters is detailed and provides much of their background and exposes their personalities in a unique way. The three main characters are interesting and their expressions of faith genuine and relevant. The romance angle of the story which Dee usually writes to perfection falls a little flat with Rae happy to encourage Bruce’s attempts to reestablish their relationship while enjoying time with Nathan. It was a little implausible for my liking. Despite this the suspense is superb and I hope a sequel is written which reaches a satisfying conclusion of the storyline between these appealing characters.

Dee’s books have always been a “must read” for me and that is yet to change!

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15 Responses to Before I Wake by Dee Henderson

  1. I totally thought the same things with this book. I’ve always loved Dee Henderson and the O’Malley Series is one of my favorites. I too, am looking forward to the next book in this series to see where she takes all the loose ends.

  2. Who was the killer??? I have gone back and re-read all the clues, but I still am not certain??? I don’t want to ruin the read for anyone who hasn’t read the book yet, but I’m so frustrated getting to the end and it not being clear to me . . . I couldn’t put the book down the whole week; it kept me so intrigued. Now, at the end I still can’t figure it out! Any help??

  3. I think the killer was the senior Keif, Isaac’s father.

  4. I usually enjoy Dee’s books too, but I found this really frustrating that it didn’t have a definite end. I can cope with the loose ends of romance (JUST!) but not knowing for sure who the killer is is really hard to take. I feel like I wasted the hours spent reading for no conclusion…

  5. I’m with you, Heather! Nothing new on the horizon from Dee at this stage though. Thanks for dropping by!

  6. Ditto. My husband and I read it together every evening and as it drew to an end, we were looking forward to our evening reading time only to be… disappointed is not the word… I guess to feel like it wss a bad joke or that we missed a couple of chapters… that maybe we bought a faulty book… it will be a while before we read another one again… sad cuz we have really enjoyed her books in the past.

  7. The killer was definitely NOT Keif's father. Who it was remains a mystery. It was a frustrating end for me too.

  8. I agree that this was a frusterating ending, I spent so much time reading it and then all of a sudden it ended and I didnt know who the killer was. I actually came on here to find if someone did figure out who the killer was but I no such luck. 1 it was not the Sr. Keif because well the cook didnt know how to cook. Finally there was a house that Rae was looking at at the end of the book…. could that be the killer's house, there is a name mentioned there….. but the more i think about it i think that Dee did finish and give us closer, remember what Devon thought at the end after he talked to the cook. That is the closer with the cook…

  9. It took me awhile to get into this book but halfway through I was anxious to pick it up to get the end. But such a letdown to get to the end of the book and not learn who the killer is. I think it's the truck driver – he knew that Peggy was going to see her and why. Does anyone know if there is a sequel to this book??

  10. Am sure dee Henderson has another story to compliment this one. So I am looking forward to it. Instead of being frustrated, I prefer to be expectant. Go Dee!

  11. I think it was Walter Senior that is also involved. He had a relationship with Nella, and had to keep her mouth shut

  12. He spent the night and watched her die. Then he turned up the heat in the house, and left. He then lied to Nathan that he saw her last Wednesday, but he saw her the weekend.

  13. The cook is someone named Horton, but I can’t figure out who that is. It took me so long to get through the book that I forgot if he was introduced throughout the book. Remember on page 377 that the unnamed man is moving and there’s a new address for people to have and a pretty good story for him leaving? Then they go and look at a new house on the market in the last chapter…that’s how I read it at least. If anyone remembers who Horton is, though, let me know. It’s driving me crazy and I don’t want to go through the whole book again to figure it out.

  14. I cannot believe that it ended so abruptly! I have gone over her book list and I’ve read every one of them, no Devon… Dee please write a sequel because without it this book falls flat.

  15. Saw the movie today … is different …

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