Rating: 4/5 Stars
Genre(s): Thriller, psychology fiction
I got The Silence as an Amazon first reads for February and choose it just because Amazon said its prose writing was stunning. They weren’t lying.
This story is about Stella Wiseman, once a child TV star, but now as an adult, there’s nothing glamorous about her life. Alone in her thirties, she’s lost her parents and her friends and she’s stuck in a dead-end job. However, just as she hits rock bottom, she meets Marco, a charismatic older man who offers to get her back on her feet.
He lavishes her with money, encourages her to see a doctor, and provides her with pills. Thank God for pills. They’re helping her sleep… or are they helping her avoid her problems?
With Stella’s life still in freefall, Marco whisks her away to a secluded cottage where she is isolated from everyone except him and a few strangers in the nearby town. Yet, the closer he pulls her, the worse she gets. He tells her it’s all in her head, and she just needs time away from the world.
No longer sure what’s real and what’s not, Stella begins to question everything. Was she going insane? Was she wrong to trust herself? Is the one person she thought was fighting for her survival actually her biggest threat?
Can I just say, I loved this story. I read it quickly, gobbling down the words with great anticipation for what would happen next. My favorite part was the style of the writing. It had a lot of great lines, but my favorites were:
“Marc- o. Marc- oh. I need to remember that. He’d shown me such kindness.”
“The bureaucracy of death is daunting.”
“I can feel the edges of myself and the anxiety that waits there, sharp as blades.”
“I am horrified by tears. Real tears, the rawness of them.”
“But I can tell by the set of his shoulders that what he means is I will swallow you, I will swallow you whole, and I am afraid.”
“I stared at him without speaking. I was thinking about Hansel and Gretel, nearly eaten by a witch who had pretended to be good and kind and sweet but, of course, she had not been. We knew that, dear reader. We knew she was a cannibal.”
The characters in Pearce’s novel are well designed as well. Many of the side characters are only in it for a scene or two, but they seem so real, and like there’s more to them then just the surface.
Throughout this book, I was completely unsure what was going to happen next. There were so many suspects and many different ways the story could go. I was filled with anticipation, waiting to see how the story would play out.
However, this also led to a lot of confusion about the events of this book. Stella, being an addict, has a lot of gaps in her memory. She is confused by her own life and things as they happen, making her an unreliable narrator as we never really know what was actually going on. This was extremely frustrating at times, but it also made the mystery that much deeper.
I’m pretty sure this will be one of those books where you either hate it or love it. I enjoyed it immensely, but that doesn’t mean everyone else will. If you’re looking for a good psychology thriller, Daisy Pearce’s The Silence has been one of my favorites I’ve read in a long time. I’d encourage you to give it a try.