House of Silence by Linda Gillard
|House of Silence by Linda Gillard
|Category: Women's Fiction
|Reviewer: Sue Magee
|Summary: Family saga, rom-com. country house mystery - this book has them all and does them all well. Highly recommended.
|Date: April 2011
|Publisher: Linda Gillard
|External links: Author's website
Gwen Rowland was a sensible, cautious kind of girl, but then the only family she'd ever known were all dead from a surfeit of unprotected sex, drink and the sort of drugs that don't come in a child-proof bottle. So – her relationship with an actor was a little out of the ordinary, but they seemed to be friends before they were lovers. The crunch came at Christmas when Alfie said that he was spending it with his family – which would have left Gwen on her own. She did slightly twist his arm to take her with him and he was obviously reluctant to comply. When they arrived at Creake Hall, home of author Rae Holbrook and her daughters, Gwen sensed a change in Alfie, a lack of warmth towards his family. Then there was the family photo which didn't fit the known facts and the complication of the gardener who said little but was a very good listener.
Nowadays it seems that books have to fall into a particular genre before publishers are willing to take them on and this book really does defy classification. There's a family drama and a country house mystery which could stand up on its own. There's romance in there, but it's not of the typical chick-lit type and sometimes the tension is such that you have to remind yourself to breathe. Normally if I reviewed a book with all these attributes I'd be suggesting that the author should make up their mind rather than throwing everything into the mix and hoping that the reader will find something which appeals, but that's not the case here – this is an author at the top of her form who knows exactly what she's doing. Brilliant. It's an intelligent book for people who like their reading to challenge them.
Linda Gillard is a great favourite of us here at Bookbag because she writes intelligent fiction. It's the sort that you read and enjoy and then go back to the beginning and read again to find out how she did it. They're always brilliant reads and tremendous value. HOUSE OF SILENCE is like life: it doesn't work out quite the way you expect and it's only when you look back afterwards that you understand why.
The book is intricately plotted, with some great characters who stay with you long after you've finished reading. I've surprised myself by being just a little bit in love with one of them - but I'm not going to tell you who! Linda Gillard makes the writing of a book appear effortless, but believe me, plots like this require real talent (and perhaps a little bit of blood, sweat and tears).
Now, you might have looked at the ebook price and thought £1.90! That's too cheap to be worth buying or Surely some mistake?. Well, it's not a mistake and if you're interested in knowing just why it's so cheap read Selling Well is the Best Revenge. Linda is only too happy to explain why she's selling at this price and there are important implications for every reader in what she has to say.
You might also enjoy Come Home by Lisa Scottoline.
You can read more book reviews or buy House of Silence by Linda Gillard at Amazon.co.uk Amazon currently charges £2.99 for standard delivery for orders under £20, over which delivery is free.
You can read more book reviews or buy House of Silence by Linda Gillard at Amazon.com.
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