The Sleeping Girls by Rita Herron

The Sleeping Girls

Posted on January 24, 2024 by Nadene @ Totally Addicted to Reading in Reviews / 5 Comments

In The Sleeping Girls, book 9 of the Detective Ellie Reeves series, Herron delivered another powerful and riveting police procedural. The story hidden between the pages of The Sleeping Girls pulled me in and had me reading into the wee hours. Fans of crime fiction will want to add this one to their reading list.


The Sleeping Girls by Rita HerronTitle: The Sleeping Girls
Author(s): Rita Herron
Series: Detective Ellie Reeves #9
Also in this series: The Burning Girls , Widow Lake
Published by Bookouture on January 22, 2024
Pages: 402
Genre(s): Mystery, Thriller
Source: Publisher
Format: eArc
Purchase: Amazon|Audible
Rating: One StarOne StarOne StarOne StarHalf a Star
Series Rating: One StarOne StarOne StarOne StarOne Star

The young girl looked so innocent, like a sleeping angel. Kelsey lay on a bed of white sheets, golden hair fanned across the pillow, eyes closed, pale lips pressed together. A white teddy bear was tucked under her slender arm… “My baby, she’s dead” her distraught mother choked out.
When the call comes in that fifteen-year-old Kelsey Tiller has gone missing from her bedroom in the middle of the night, Detective Ellie Reeves rushes to talk to her distraught parents. They tell her that Kelsey, a slender blond with green eyes and a timid smile, had plans to go shopping for her homecoming dress the next day, insisting she would have no reason to run away. But when neighbors report seeing Kelsey with a secret boyfriend, Ellie wonders how much Kelsey really told her parents.
Ellie is determined to find Kelsey’s boyfriend and interviews her friends and teachers at school. But just as she is making headway with the case, she receives some devastating news. Kelsey’s parents have received a photo of their daughter lying on a bed with white sheets over her body, skin ghostly pale under the freckles dotting her nose, her precious life snuffed out.
Desperate to find answers for those who loved Kelsey, Ellie studies the picture and realizes that her body has been posed in the same way as a teenage girl murdered ten years earlier. And when she learns Darnell, the killer in that case, has just been released from prison, fear crawls through her. Could Darnell have stolen another innocent life?
But just as Ellie thinks she has cracked the case, Kelsey’s best friend Ruby is snatched from her home, and Darnell has an unbreakable alibi. Haunted by Kelsey’s ashen face, Ellie knows she must race against time to find Ruby alive. And when she discovers one of her team is hiding critical information, she realizes she needs to act alone. But is she dealing with a twisted copycat killer or is the danger far closer to home?
A totally gripping and pulse-pounding crime thriller that will have you holding your breath as you race through the pages! Perfect for fans of Lisa Regan, Kendra Elliot and Melinda Leigh.

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

This post contains affiliate links you can use to purchase the book. If you buy the book using that link, I will receive a small commission from the sale.

This book may be unsuitable for people under 17 years of age due to its use of sexual content, drug and alcohol use, and/or violence.

Detective Reeves always work endlessly to find justice for the victims, and it was no different in The Sleeping Girls.  She worked tirelessly to find the person behind the disappearance of two teenage girls while juggling her personal life. The parents received photos of the girls posed in a particular manner. Now a murder, which occurred ten years ago, bore similar traits to the current case of the missing girls. The body of the victim in that case was posed in an identical manner.  Now, the person charged with the ten-year-old crime currently coming to terms with his recent release from prison, while an agency seeking justice for wrongfully accused individuals seeks to clear his name. However, with this latest development, its’s possible the young man may not be so innocent after all. Or is it a case where someone is trying to frame him?

Twists and turns permeated the pages of The Sleeping Girls. The twists and turns not only occurred in the mystery but also in the personal lives of the characters. There was a particular character I did not trust. I figured she was using trickery to snare someone. Also, her hostility towards Ellie rubbed me raw. In the end, the story revealed her deceit. I hope with this revelation that Ellie can finally be with the man she truly loves.

It’s rare for to feel empathy for a murderous villain. Now, while I am not in agreement with their actions, one can empathize with the situation in this instance. Unfortunately, the negative actions of others started the chain of events ten years ago.

Now figuring out the person responsible for the crimes and the proved an exciting challenge. The killer’s perspective added to the intensity of the story. It is said there’s a fine line between brilliance and insanity, and the killer’s perspective epitomized this statement.

Now I have not read all the books in the series as joined this remarkable journey late. Luckily, the books work well as stand alone. I enjoyed how the story unfolded and admired Ellie’s determination in finding justice for the victims. Fans of crime fiction will find this a fascinating read. 


Story Evaluation
World Building
Writing Style
Overall: One StarOne StarOne StarOne StarHalf a Star



About Rita Herron

USA Today Bestselling and award-winning author Rita Herron fell in love with books at the ripe age of eight when she read her first Trixie Belden mystery. Although she wanted to be a writer then and actually scrawled her first novel at age twelve, she didn’t think real people grew up to be writers, so she became a kindergarten teacher instead. Ten years ago, she traded her classroom storytelling and puppets for a computer and now writes so she doesn’t have to get a real job. Having sold over fifty books to date, she enjoys spinning spine-tingling romantic suspense tales filled with murder, mayhem, and spicy romance as well as sexy romantic comedies. Rita Herron currently writes romantic suspense for Harlequin Intrigue and she’s writing dark, gritty romantic suspense thrillers for Amazon Montlake.

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5 responses to “The Sleeping Girls by Rita Herron

  1. You have me curious to read this mystery with that hateful person twisting her personal life, too. I’ve been meaning to try Rita Heron’s books at some point.