Monday, June 25, 2012

Book Review: The Weight of Silence by Heather Gudenkauf

You know those books that you read that rocked your world? And how you just want to run around to all of your bookish friends telling them how awesome these books are? And how you look like a nerdish maniac doing so?

I'm going to be that nerdish maniac in these next two posts, because I just read AMAZING books and feel it is my obligation to tell the world about them.

The first one I read has been on my bookshelf for a little under a year now. Based on its description, I figured I would like it, but did not realize I would love it as much as I did. The novel is The Weight of Silence by Heather Gudenkauf. Here's the Goodreads summary:

The Weight of SilenceIt happens quietly one August morning. As dawn's shimmering light drenches the humid Iowa air, two families awaken to find their little girls have gone missing in the night. Seven-year-old Calli Clark is sweet, gentle, a dreamer who suffers from selective mutism brought on by tragedy that pulled her deep into silence as a toddler. Calli's mother, Antonia, tried to be the best mother she could within the confines of marriage to a mostly absent, often angry husband. Now, though she denies that her husband could be involved in the possible abductions, she fears her decision to stay in her marriage has cost her more than her daughter's voice.Petra Gregory is Calli's best friend, her soul mate and her voice. But neither Petra nor Calli has been heard from since their disappearance was discovered. Desperate to find his child, Martin Gregory is forced to confront a side of himself he did not know existed beneath his intellectual, professorial demeanor. Now these families are tied by the question of what happened to their children. And the answer is trapped in the silence of unspoken family secrets.
It sound great, right? It is. The novel is told from several points of view:  Calli, Calli's mother, Deputy Sheriff Louis (who once had a "thing" with Calli's mother), Calli's brother, and Martin Gregory, who is the father of Calli's best friend Petra. The first half of the book is really the back story: what is happening, and what relationships these people have with each other. Memories are spotted throughout. Then, just as that gets a little old, some other events come up and the novel picks up it's pace. The next thing you know, it's done, and you're salivating for more. The plot was addicting and unique. The whole novel you're wondering what is going on and who is responsible. SO. GOOD. It's a little Jodi Picoult-esque, so if you enjoy her writing, give this one a chance. Even if you don't, I'd encourage you to give this one a chance.

Here's where I'm at after this book (which was super fast-paced, BTW):
The Weight of Silence by Heather Gudenkauf
Rating: 5/5
Pages: 373
2012 Reading Goal: 10,977/15,000

Happy Monday, readers!

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