Publisher: Crown Publishing Group
Release Date: February 16, 2016
Source: Crown’s Blogging for Books
The gripping, moving story of a mother and daughter’s quest to uncover a dark secret in the Alaskan wilderness, from the New York Times bestselling author of Sister and Afterwards.
Thrillingly suspenseful and atmospheric, The Quality of Silence is the story of Yasmin, a beautiful astrophysicist, and her precocious deaf daughter, Ruby, who arrive in a remote part of Alaska to be told that Ruby’s father, Matt, has been the victim of a catastrophic accident. Unable to accept his death as truth, Yasmin and Ruby set out into the hostile winter of the Alaskan tundra in search of answers. But as a storm closes in, Yasmin realizes that a very human danger may be keeping pace with them. And with no one else on the road to help, they must keep moving, alone and terrified, through an endless Alaskan night.
I’m not quite sure what to make of this book. There were parts I absolutely loved and parts that just didn’t work. The premise of THE QUALITY OF SILENCE is hard to believe, but the wild Alaskan setting is amazing.
Matt is a wildlife photographer currently filming in northern-most Alaska. There’s some kind of trouble between him and his wife, Yasmin. She and their 10-year old daughter, Ruby, fly from their home in the UK to Fairbanks to confront Matt, only to be told that he’s been killed in a terrible accident. Yasmin doesn’t believe that he’s dead, so she decides to drive with Ruby across Alaska, over snowy, icy mountains, practically to the Arctic Ocean, to find him.
Now, I did enjoy their frantic journey north toward Deadhorse very much. It was scary and suspenseful. The descriptions of Alaska were breathtaking, “thousands of miles of snow and hardly any people.” Each time a landmark was mentioned, I had to Google it. It’s dark all the time and there’s a blizzard bearing down on them. Gave me chills!
The writing didn’t flow particularly well, mainly due to the many abrupt perspective changes. First to third person, character to character. Flashbacks to the present. Ruby’s part was always in first person, and she was my favorite character by far. It was interesting to learn the challenges she faced as a deaf person in a hearing world, and somehow even getting her mother to understand where’s she’s coming from (with help from Alaska).
Overall, I’m glad I read this book. The twist at the end was disturbing and eyeopening too. It concerns me that something like that could happen, or perhaps already has.
Disclosure: I received a copy of this book from Crown Publishing Group’s Blogging for Books Program in exchange for an honest review.