Sunday 12 February 2017

Silent Scream by Angela Marsons

Published by Bookouture on February 20, 2015
Published by Zaffre on July 14, 2016

Late to the party doesn’t really cover this review, but as far as I’m concerned it is never too late to rave about a book like Silent Scream.

Silent Scream is book one in the Kim Stone series written by Angela Marsons, and every single good thing you’ve heard about this book and its author is absolutely true. This book had me glued to its pages and obsessing over the dark and gritty story it contained. It’s a truly nail-biting crime novel that had me grasping at any spare time whatsoever so I could pick my Kindle up and read some more.

The beginning of the book sees five people stood around a grave with secrets they are determined to bury forever. Only secrets never stay secrets forever. If the opening to this book wasn’t intriguing and attention-grabbing enough, fast forward a few more pages and several fictional years, and the reader is met with the first murder of Silent Scream. By then I was completely engrossed in this gruesomely layered crime novel and the suspense was built, ready, if apprehensively, to see what Kim, Bryant and the rest of the team would uncover.

I loved Kim Stone and everything about her. I get the feeling she would be pretty uninterested or bemused to know I felt that way too, but she’s just a brilliant character who even really early on in the book showed potential that she had the backstory and the personality to feature in several more of Angela’s books. I enjoy crime novels more where we can really feel and understand the detective’s personal story without it taking anything away from the crime and investigation. Kim in Silent Scream is the perfect example of that. The things we learn about her life and her upbringing only made the crimes feel more personal, involving me in the story even more as we follow Kim’s thought processes and the brief hints at the ordeals she has faced in life.

Kim Stone is honest, sharp and snarky, and her mind is always on the case at hand and she is generally one or two steps ahead of everyone else, which I loved, especially the way she did little to hide this. Her quick wit and interactions with colleagues and in fact everybody she encountered did make me laugh quite a lot throughout, which is slightly unusual (in a good way) for a crime novel. Her working relationship with Bryant was a real highlight of this book for me. I could understand how she might frustrate some of the people she worked with, but her attitude is a big part of what made her so easy for me to like.

Silent Scream is packed with twists, some I saw coming, some I would never have seen coming and some that had me scrambling back and re-reading parts to see if I’d actually read what I thought I’d just read. I simply loved the way this book was told and the way everything played out. It’s pacy and riveting with darkly disturbing actions throughout. The killer, through the odd chapter we read from their perspective, was vile and one of those you’d love to see get their comeuppance. And whilst this book is about discovering the culprit, there was much more to it than that. Every victim, and actually nearly every character we meet, had a story that meant something, that moved me or saddened me or sickened me. As much as I wanted to know who the murderer was, I was that involved with every other aspect of the story that when it was revealed, I realised in a way I had been blind sighted as there were so many thought-provoking themes in this book I hadn’t even attempted many rubbish guesses, which is very unlike me as I work my way through a crime novel. Overall I absolutely loved Silent Scream, and further books in the series have now become unmissable for me.

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