All the Dangerous Things

Stacy Willingham


One year ago, Isabelle Drake’s life changed forever: her toddler son, Mason, was taken out of his crib in the middle of the night while she and her husband were asleep in the next room. With little evidence and few leads for the police to chase, the case quickly went cold. However, Isabelle cannot rest until Mason is returned to her—literally.

Except for the occasional catnap or small blackout where she loses track of time, she hasn’t slept in a year.

Isabelle’s entire existence now revolves around finding him, but she knows she can’t go on this way forever. In hopes of jarring loose a new witness or buried clue, she agrees to be interviewed by a true-crime podcaster—but his interest in Isabelle’s past makes her nervous. His incessant questioning paired with her severe insomnia has brought up uncomfortable memories from her own childhood, making Isabelle start to doubt her recollection of the night of Mason’s disappearance, as well as second-guess who she can trust… including herself. But she is determined to figure out the truth no matter where it leads.

-Excerpt taken from Goodreads.

Check Goodreads to see the book’s ratings.

My Opinion

4 out of 5 stars (4 / 5) Isabelle’s child was taken while she was sleeping in the next room. Over the next year, she rarely sleeps, all in the name of furthering the investigation or finding her child. Standing in front of true crime addicts and depicting her story becomes her new norm.

“Because that’s the thing with the audience, the thing I learned long ago: They don’t want to get too uncomfortable. They don’t want to actually live through what I’ve lived through, every ugly moment. They just want a taste. They want enough for their curiosity to be satiated—but if it gets too bitter or too salty or too real, they’ll smack their lips and leave dissatisfied.”

Isabelle is playing to the audience, purely hoping for a tip, a frequent attendee or anything that might lead to her child.

Personally, I’ve been struggling with serious insomnia for months. As a true insomniac, I can relate to this book in so many ways. Reading it during the night due to insomnia makes it ring even more true.

“You know what’s more dangerous than sleepwalking? Sleep deprivation.”

The problems that arise with insomnia, such as delusions, memory difficulties, mood changes and more made the story so much more interesting. Not only is she possibly sleepwalking, but her realm of what is real is so obscure that it makes you wonder what truly has been or is happening.

“So a sleepwalker could do things, terrible things, that they would never do if they were awake. They can’t differentiate between right and wrong.”

One aspect of the book I didn’t like was that I couldn’t tell how old the child was. It was almost halfway into the book before it mentioned he was 18 months old when taken. At this point, a few pieces fell into place a bit better into my head.

“You don’t have to pull the trigger to get away with murder—sometimes, all you need to do is load the gun and let it go off on its own.”

I liked the end, there was a depth to it that I wasn’t expecting. Sometimes, how the book ends leaves an overall feeling for the book. I was impressed!

AUDIO REVIEW: Great! Thrillers are my go-to genre right now and this one did not disappoint. The narrator had a good, even pace that kept me interested throughout.

General content summary: This book deals with some heavy subjects. If you’re a sensitive reader or have multiple triggers, I do not recommend this book. F words= 7, alcohol (multiple, alcoholism), sleep medication (multiple), child missing, previous m/f kiss (2x), memory of a father drinking and mother bloody, an emotional relationship with a married man, suicide (pills), postpartum negative feelings toward baby, funerals and grief, physical violence (blood, broken nose), intimacy (no details), previous child drowning (few details), sleepwalking (multiple), previous small house fire, previous stillborn (grief, severe postpartum depression/psychosis, some details), attempted killings (few details), forced drowning (few details but intense). 

Thank you to Minotaur Books for the gifted copy!

The book releases January 10, 2022.

**As an Amazon associate I earn from qualifying purchases. 

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