The Bram Stoker Award–winning author of Survivor Song and The Cabin at the End of the World “slices, dices, and spins the neo-noir in his own strange way” in his “fast, smart, and completely satisfying”* debut novel featuring a narcoleptic detective from Southie.
The Little Sleep is Paul Tremblay’s nod to Raymond Chandler starring a PI who nods off. Mark Genevich is a South Boston private detective who happens to have a severe form of narcolepsy, which includes hypnagogic hallucinations, like waking dreams. Unsurprisingly, his practice is not exactly booming.
Then one day the daughter of an ambitious district attorney and a contestant on the reality talent show American Star named Jennifer Times comes to him for help—or does she? A man has stolen her fingers, she claims, and she’d like Genevich to get them back. When the PI wakes up from what must surely be a hallucination, the only evidence that his client may have been real is a manila envelope on his desk. Inside are revealing photos of Jennifer. Is Genevich dealing with a blackmailer or an exhibitionist? And where is the mysterious young lady, who hopefully still has her fingers attached?
The detective has no choice but to plunge into what proves to be a bad dream of a case, with twists and turns even his subconscious could not anticipate. Chloroforming the hardboiled crime genre then shaking it awake and spinning it around, Paul Tremblay delivers a wholly original, wildly imaginative, gleefully entertaining noir mystery—guaranteed to keep you up all night, even if Mark Genevich won’t be joining you.
South Boston PI Mark Genevich struggles to lead a seminormal life despite his narcolepsy, whose symptoms include falling asleep mid-conversation and hallucinations, in this uninspired noir from Stoker-finalist Tremblay (City Pier). When Jennifer Times, the daughter of prominent DA William "Billy" Times, comes to Mark's office with racy photographs of herself she received anonymously, Mark agrees to take her case. But after trying to contact both Jennifer who's a contestant on an American Idol like TV show and her father, Mark realizes that Jennifer's visit was a hallucination. The photographs are his only tether to reality, one that becomes even more tenuous when he discovers not only that the subject isn't Jennifer, but that her father and his goons will do anything to get the mysterious photos back. Despite a promisingly quirky hero, Tremblay's plot is so full of holes that readers may wonder if they've suffered from one of Mark's frequent blackouts.