ARC Review: Don’t Go To Sleep by Bryce Moore

Posted August 5, 2022 by Lisa Mandina in Review / 8 Comments

I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

ARC Review:  Don’t Go To Sleep by Bryce MooreDon't Go to Sleep by Bryce Moore
Published by Sourcebooks Fire on August 2, 2022
Genres: YA Historical Fiction, YA Horror, YA Thriller
Pages: 320
Source: the publisher
Format: ARC
My Rating: five-stars
Buy on AmazonBuy on Barnes & Noble


A seventeen-year old girl goes up against the notorious axeman murderer in 1918 in this suspenseful historical fiction story from the author of The Perfect Place to Die.

Gianna is the average seventeen-year-old girl living in 1918 New Orleans. She worries about her family’s store, the great war, and a mysterious illness that’s about to take hold of the city she loves.

It doesn’t help that there also appears to be a mad man on the loose in her neighborhood. The attacks started as burglaries but soon escalate to cold blooded murder. There’s a killer out there, and the police can’t seem to figure out how to stop him.

Gianna enlists the help of her friend Enzo to investigate. And as they study the crimes, they see a common link between the victims, and Gianna can’t help but wonder if it’s the same man who attacked her family years before.

As Gianna gets closer to the killer, she discovers a connection between them that she never would have suspected.

My Review

First I just have to say that I devoured this book! It was one that was so hard to put down whether it was to go to bed or back to work after a lunch break. I have been fascinated with New Orleans for a long time, and that fascination only became more intense after visiting it for the first time a few years ago, so much that I visited it again twice more after that! This book brought in a lot of historical events that I was unaware of, or just didn’t really know much about if I even had heard of them.

The whole Axeman storyline was scary and definitely gave the horror to this tale. It was so neat to hear about the different neighborhoods and areas in NOLA at the time, and how one would get around to them. The influenza epidemic at the time was a unique aspect as well with the present day world having just come out of a time of wearing masks and even still dealing with a disease. The thoughts that Gianna had throughout the different stages of the story, wondering what good a mask did, to even when she was wearing one how she felt about other people not wearing them, to how she felt at times about wearing one herself. Her comments on how the disease affected different people different ways resonated as well.

My dad’s side of my family is Italian and has always been very proud of that part of our heritage. And while I knew that there was of course persecution of Italians in the past even in America, I guess I never thought about it in places like NOLA which seems like such a melting pot of so many cultures. Although Italian was never a culture I really connect to that location. Also the little Italian grocery stores and how they were run out of their houses. While it reminded me a bit of the Olsens on Little House on the Prairie, it was definitely something intriguing in this story.

I wanted to read the first book by this author, but just didn’t get it fit in when it came out, so I’m grateful the publisher sent me this copy and that now I can share it with my students!

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8 responses to “ARC Review: Don’t Go To Sleep by Bryce Moore

  1. I knew NOLA was a port of entry for lots of immigrants including Italians (I was trying to find my grandpa’s port of entry), but I don’t think of Italians in that city either. Wow, sounds like a compelling read, Lisa.

    • Lisa Mandina

      I don’t know why I never realized that about NOLA! Probably because I hadn’t heard a ton of its history until I grew up and got interested in it. It was a definite thriller!

    • Lisa Mandina

      My family is Sicilian too! I guess it was my dad’s grandpa who came over to America I think. I know that based on how many generations back it was, or how few, my dad and sister were able to get their Italian citizenship a couple years ago. I could do it as well if I wanted to go through all the paperwork.

        • Lisa Mandina

          You really could if you wanted! Yeah, not sure what I’d do with it either. My sister travels a lot and actually moved to Scotland in October of 2019, so she probably uses it more.

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