As anyone who’s read my blog – or any of my novels – will know, I’m a sucker for Celtic-themed horror. ‘Sleeping Dog’ by R. A. Sharpe offers a horror set in the modern day and uses one of the Welsh Mabinogion stories as a backdrop.
The novel started off with a decent pace to maintain interest, and slowly pulled me in with its realistic settings and believable characters. While the Mabinogion is a good background, the book’s strength is the quality of its plotting and characterisation which kept me turning the pages.
The main points and the flavour of the Welsh stories are faithfully maintained. Sharpe also weaves modern witches seamlessly into the plot.
The storyline has enough twists to keep the reader guessing, but not so many that it seemed to sway all over the place.
I have read reviews that complain about the gore, and it’s probably fair to say Sharpe doesn’t pull his punches in regard to letting blood flow. I did think most of the violence was in context, but the book probably wouldn’t have suffered from this aspect being toned down a little.
In all, this was a read that kept me engrossed. If I have any complaints it’s to do with the presentation and editing – there were regular glitches and errors that I suspect can’t all be blamed on the electronic formatting. These did annoy me in several places, but not enough make me want to stop reading.