Sleeping Giants by Sylvain Neuvel – A Book Review

Sleeping Giants


What happens when you make a discovery that changes everything?

Deadwood, USA. A girl sneaks out just before dark to ride her new bike. Suddenly, the ground disappears beneath her. Waking up at the bottom of a deep pit, she sees an emergency rescue team above her. The people looking down see something far stranger…

“We always look forward. We never look back.”

That girl grows up to be Dr. Rose Franklyn, a brilliant scientist and the leading world expert on what she discovered. An enormous, ornate hand made of an exceptionally rare metal, which predates all human civilisation on the continent.

“But this thing … it’s different. It challenges us. It rewrites history.”

An object whose origins and purpose are perhaps the greatest mystery humanity has ever faced. Solving the secret of where it came from – and how many more parts may be out there – could change life as we know it.

“It dares us to question what we know about ourselves.”

But what if we were meant to find it? And what happens when this vast, global puzzle is complete…?

“About everything.”

* * *


Author: Sylvain Neuvel

Publisher: Penguin

Release Date: 30/03/2017

Pages: 384

Genre: Science Fiction

Series: Themis Files #1

My Chosen Format: Kindle

My Rating of ‘Sleeping Giants’: 5 out of 5

Purchase: Amazon UKAmazon USAudible UKAudible US



This is easily the most enjoyable book I’ve picked up this year. Words I thought I’d not be saying due to the strange format of the novel. It’s told entirely in the form of interviews and other report-style pieces and, despite that, I feel as though I am more attached to the characters in this than I have been to any other novel in lord knows how long.

Just by seeing the words ‘told in the form of interviews’ you’d not imagine there could be a great deal of emotion, excitement or, well, interest within these pages. There was so much. So, so much to love and enjoy within ‘Sleeping Gods’.

I expected to enjoy it (having loved a podcast told via the medium of ‘found footage’ titled ‘The White Vault’) I felt as though I had a bit of experience with this medium. Still, I didn’t expect to enjoy it anywhere near as much as I did.

In ‘Sleeping Giants’ Sylvain Neuvel gives us a cast of wonderfully different characters, each with their own motivations, personalities and flaws. He creates protagonists that are easy to get behind and relate to, just as well as he creates antagonists that are easy to hate.

Perhaps my favourite part of this novel, aside from the fact that it makes the Ancient Astronaut theory seriously cool, is the character of the interviewer. So much mystery surrounds this man and, with every interview given, you can’t help but fall deeper into the pit of curiosity where he is concerned.

The skill at which the plot is woven is superb and the way in which the author brought things to a close at the end was fantastic. As I mentioned earlier, the primary plotline revolves around ‘Ancient Astronaut’ theory, this is the theory that advanced, space-faring beings have visited our planet in the past and, in some way, influenced our growth as a civilisation. If you’ve ever seen ‘Ancient Aliens’ or seen the gif of that guy with the overly-loud hairstyle saying ‘it’s aliens’, then you should give this a try. Even if you hate the idea of ancient alien space travellers, this story is told in such an in-depth, enjoyable way that you won’t be able to stop yourself from respecting the work put in.

The author also has a talent for throwing curve balls at you left, right and centre. Some of the things that happened left me shocked, happy, excited etc … I don’t often go beyond ‘I enjoyed that’ or ‘that was pretty bad’ where a range of emotions are concerned when reading.

I found this to be such an easy to read, easy to visualise page turner and can’t wait to jump into the next in the series. I only hope I’m able to enjoy the rest of the series as much as I did ‘Sleeping Giants’.


How awesome is that cover? Absolute work of art.

20 thoughts on “Sleeping Giants by Sylvain Neuvel – A Book Review

  1. I’ve seen this one pop up on a couple of blogs already and it really sounds terrific. I have once read a novel in this style as well (The three by Sarah Lotz) and it was really good. This one is currently pretty high on my to read list. Great post as always! 😀

    Liked by 1 person

  2. That cover is great. It’s why I’m happy to have a copy of the hardcover edition although I’m not a fan of hardcovers. I do want to read this and you review renewed my curiosity about it, but I tend to tiptoe toward sci-fi books. For some reason, I keep thinking I’ll feel confused when reading them.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. This is done in a way that’s very accessible. The interview style explains everything so well. I’d say it’s one of the rare sci-fi books that’s not confusing, in my opinion anyway.

      Hope you enjoy it if you do decide to take the plunge.


      1. They should have been here Monday. But think there’s still postage delays going on. I’m away for sunny Leicestershire tomorrow so if they’ve not arrive by next Monday I’ll need to chase it up

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Where in Leicestershire? If you’re Melton Mowbray way on feel free to give me a shout.

        I can also confirm that Leicestershire weather is pretty weird right now. Sunny … yes … but everything else as well 😂


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