“While the City Slept is an expertly crafted nonfiction narrative, marred only by Sanders’s unwieldy use of geological metaphors and his predilection for sentence fragments. His even-handed reporting and emotional commitment to the story make for gripping reading — and the systemic failures he highlights cry out for remedy, even if it’s hard to know just where to begin.
Sanders spares readers the horrors Hopper and Butz endured until the final third of the book. Although the story is told with incredible sensitivity, Sanders doesn't spare readers the truth that made journalists and court reporters cry in the courtroom. Many readers will want to read through it, all of it, to see the best of Sanders' elegant writing and learn of Butz and Hopper's profound courage.
Sanders does a terrific job of telling the life stories of all three principal characters - from their childhoods through the night their lives gruesomely intersected ... While the City Slept is a heartbreaking - and compelling - story from every angle.