Before I Wake

Before I Wake

Paperback Reading Group Gold

By (author) Robert J Wiersema

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  • Publisher: St Martin's Press
  • Format: Paperback | 312 pages
  • Dimensions: 137mm x 208mm x 36mm | 318g
  • Publication date: 22 July 2008
  • Publication City/Country: New York
  • ISBN 10: 0312381050
  • ISBN 13: 9780312381059
  • Edition statement: Reprint
  • Illustrations note: black & white illustrations
  • Sales rank: 1,141,512

Product description

After an unthinkable tragedy happens, an unbelievable miracle begins. . . Three-year-old Sherry is the adored only child of Simon and Karen Barrett. But when Sherry is critically injured in a hit-and-run accident, the fault lines in the Barretts's marriage begin to show. As her parents' marriage falls apart, it is discovered that Sherry has miraculous healing powers. Meanwhile, the guilt-stricken driver of the truck attempts suicide--but is unable to die. Henry Denton instead finds himself in a place of darkness, somewhere between this world and the next, invisible to all but a group of mysterious and downtrodden men. Haunted by his shame, Henry struggles to understand this mysterious limbo.As word of Sherry's powers spread, her parents must decide how best to shelter their daughter and help the many sick and dying who are drawn to her side. At the same time, a larger battle is brewing-- one that has been raging for two thousand years, and one that might yet claim the lives of Sherry and her family.Robert J. Wiersema's brilliant debut novel sheds light on the inner lives of characters struggling against tragedy, who find each other and themselves in the darkness. "Before I Wake" reveals the power of forgiveness, and the true nature, and cost, of miracles.

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Author information

Robert J. Wiersema has been a bookseller for more than fifteen years. A journalist and reviewer who contributes regularly to many major Canadian publications, he lives in Victoria, British Columbia, with his family.

Review quote

"Before I Wake is a stunning debut. Robert Wiersema's novel is original, thought-provoking and downright wonderful." -Michael Connelly, author of The Closers" "and The Lincoln Lawyer "Through a tale that is both intimate and profound, Robert J. Wiersema reminds us there is magic in truth, and truth in the fantastic. Before I Wake is an edge-of-your-seat debut that is "never" faint of heart." -Ami McKay, author of The Birth House" " "I wept over this book as I read it, and I'm still haunted by it. Wiersema's compassion for us all shines through in writing that is vivid and very often disturbingly powerful. He is a beautiful writer, and this is a beautiful book." -Gail Anderson-Dargatz, author of The Cure for Death by Lightning, A Recipe for Bees" "and A Rhinestone Button" " "I read this book in less than three days, over the Christmas holidays with a house full of family and friends, and every time I had to put it down, I found myself compiling lists of people for whom I wanted to buy it. It captured me from the opening page and kept me going, wanting more, because it is a wonderful story, superbly told. The tight, tersely written chapters with their constantly changing points of view had me totally enthralled, because the characters are all utterly believable; every one of them rings true, with no miscues. A wonderful novel from a storyteller who knows what being a master of the craft entails." -Jack Whyte, author of the Dream of Eagles series "Inventively told using cinematic jump cuts and fantastical interventions, Before I Wake provocatively dances along the lines between faith and science, life and death. Robert Wiersema's first novel shows a writerpossessed with the kind of storytelling instincts that make you care about the answer to the one question that really counts: What happens next?" -Andrew Pyper, author of The Wildfire Season

Back cover copy

"[An] intriguing supernatural thriller in which a sudden tragedy befalls a family and strange, wondrous events take place in its wake . . ."--"Seattle"" Post-Intelligencer""Wiersema provides a deep thriller that will keep his audience wondering until the revelatory final confrontation." --"The Midwest Book Review""Wiersema threads the supernatural throughout a novel grounded in domestic conflict and tragedy . . Intriguing." --"NY Daily News""An intelligent, contemplative supernatural thriller replete with well-rounded characters, artless dialogue and a plot that, while imbued with the unexplained, develops organically, revealing its secrets at just the right pace . . . an engrossing story of flawed but genuinely good people who must bear up under the stress of loss, betrayal, unwarranted miracles and unconventional spiritual warfare . . . an engaging, emotionally resonant read." --"Publisher's Weekly" ""Before I Wake" is a stunning debut. Robert Wiersema's novel is original, thought-provoking and downright wonderful." --Michael Connelly, "New York"" Times" #1 bestselling author of "The Closers" "Riveting. . . grips the reader in a chokehold on page one and doesn't let go until the very last line. . . . Wiersema's story is utterly fearless, right to the very end. It never shies away or backs down from its questioning of faith, theology, morality and mystery. . . a unique, spellbinding, and ultimately uplifting gem." --"The Globe and Mail" """"Before I Wake" provocatively dances along the lines between faith and science, life and death." --Andrew Pyper, author of "Lost Girls" and "The Wildfire Season"After an unthinkable tragedy happens, an unbelievable miraclebegins. . . Three-year-old Sherry is the adored only child of Simon and Karen Barrett. But when Sherry is critically injured in a hit-and-run accident, the fault lines in the Barretts's marriage begin to show. As her parents' marriage falls apart, it is discovered that Sherry has miraculous healing powers. Meanwhile, the guilt-stricken driver of the truck attempts suicide--but is unable to die. Henry Denton instead finds himself in a place of darkness, somewhere between this world and the next, invisible to all but a group of mysterious and downtrodden men. Haunted by his shame, Henry struggles to understand this mysterious limbo.As word of Sherry's powers spread, her parents must decide how best to shelter their daughter and help the many sick and dying who are drawn to her side. At the same time, a larger battle is brewing-- one that has been raging for two thousand years, and one that might yet claim the lives of Sherry and her family.Robert J. Wiersema's brilliant debut novel sheds light on the inner lives of characters struggling against tragedy, who find each other and themselves in the darkness. "Before I Wake" reveals the power of forgiveness, and the true nature, and cost, of miracles.