Book Review: Sleep, My Child, Forever

Sleep, My Child, Forever: The Riveting True Story of a Mother Who Murdered Her Own ChildrenSleep, My Child, Forever: The Riveting True Story of a Mother Who Murdered Her Own Children by John Coston

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

True crime at its most chilling.

I was intrigued by John Coston’s tale of Ellen Boehm since I grew up in St. Louis, Missouri where the sordid tale is located. I was very young during the series of events so I only vaguely recalled the story of a mother who slaughtered her children in cold blood. Being a true crime fanatic, I grabbed a copy of this book during an Amazon sale.

Ellen Boehm and her husband Paul came from a long line of abuse. When they met and eventually married, they had dreams of the perfect life together — the house, the children. What happened what much, much different. After meeting a new woman, Paul abandoned his wife and three children, leaving them to fend for themselves with little money and no support. Ellen quickly lost her home and took on extra work when she could in an effort to make ends meet. It still wasn’t enough and soon the woman was overwhelmed with her own fantasy world and three children standing in the way of her wonderful life.

What unfolds next is something of horror stories. Ellen kills her two youngest children within a year and attempts to murder her eldest daughter. By a stroke of luck, her daughter survives unscathed but life will never be the same. Ellen tries to reap the death benefits following the murder of her sons but underestimates the tenacity of the St. Louis Police Department.

Sleep, My Child, Forever is a tale of true monsters. Not the ones that live in closets and under the beds of children, but the ones that we see everyday and never suspect.