Early Review: Silence by Michelle Sagara

, by Kt Clapsadl

Silence by Michelle Sagara
The Queen of the Dead #1

It began in the graveyard. Ever since her boyfriend Nathan died in a tragic accident Emma had been coming to the graveyard at night. During the day she went through the motions at her prep school, in class, with her friends, but that’s all it was. But tonight was different. Tonight Emma and her dog were not alone in the cemetery. There were two others there—Eric, who had just started at her school, and an ancient woman who looked as though she were made of rags. And when they saw Emma there, the old woman reached out to her with a grip as chilling as death….

Emma's life is only a shell of what it once was due to the grief that is completely consuming her at the loss of the love of her life, Ethan. She may say and do all the right things, but she's really just going through the motions during the day. Her nights are spent in the graveyard so she can be alone in her grief. But one night, the graveyard didn't offer the normal solitude, but a terrifying event that changed her life forever.

I really enjoyed the characters in Silence. Each and every one no matter how large or small of a role felt fully fleshed out to the point where they just felt real. It really made it easy to get into the characters and sympathize along with them throughout the entire book. Although I do have to say that Emma was by far my favorite character. She just had so much thrown at her in such a short time, yet she handles it all with incredible grace. Seriously she is like a still lake when in the same situation I would have long been thrown overboard for my hysterics. Even when she was faced with the high probability of her imminent demise (numerous times) she never once falters from her determination to do the right thing. She would rather sacrifice herself, than allow the obstacle to stand in her way. Seriously, she is an incredibly admirable character, and I can't wait to see her in future installments.

As much as I enjoyed Silence, I found it to be incredibly frustrating as well. Granted, a lot of that frustration comes from my impatience with the world building necessary with any new series. I just want to know what is going on, and slow reveals can be killer. Even so, I have learned to mostly accept that's just they way a first book is going to be. However, what will really drive me nuts if by the end of that first book, we still don't know something major, as in something integral to the plot or main character. To keep from spoiling things too much, I'll be a little vague in talking about Silence. (Although the cover flap is rather spoilery, so be warned if you don't like that kind of thing.) When a main character goes through a major change or suddenly develops powers, I expect some sort of explanation for the sudden onset, but in Silence those questions were never answered. I just wanted to know why Emma started to develop the abilities she did, but unfortunately other than finding what she was supposed to be, there wasn't any real information. To make matters worse, she didn't really fit into the mold of what they thought she was, in fact she's completely different. I'm sure the reasons for those differences will be further revealed as the trilogy progresses, but I still want to know what caused everything in the first place, so hopefully that will be forthcoming soon.

I think the biggest proof of a really good book is when you are already thinking about the next installment before you even finish reading, and even once you do finish, it just sticks with you for a long time afterwards. Even if I hadn't already been completely engrossed, the ending events of Silence would have claimed me hook, line, and sinker, so now I'm completely desperate to get my hands on the next installment. Silence is a book you just won't want to miss! Its amazing characters and refreshing premise promise a solid block of entertainment that I highly recommend. Bravo!

(Received a copy from the publisher)

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