Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Book Review - Pray for Silence

Pray for Silence by Linda Castillo

Format - On my Nook
Why?  Pray for Silence is the 2nd book in the Kate Burkholder series...I couldn't wait to start it :)
What Now?  Diving into the 3rd in the series...the last one so far

Golden Lines

The thought makes me sick.   The terribleness of it frightens me on a level so deep that for a moment I can't catch my breath.  I've never been a crier, but I feel the burn of tears at the backs of my eyes.
"Chief?  You okay?"
I choke back a sound I don't recognize.  A sound that echoes the barrage of emotions banging around inside of me.  For a full minute, I don't respond.  When I'm finally able to speak, my voice is level.  "Call Glock and Pickles again.  Tell them we need those lights and generator yesterday."

Relinquishing control of your emotions is the ultimate bad form for a female cop.  Especially a female in a position of command.  I need to get a grip.  Suck it up and get the hell back in there.  Start the paperwork that will close this godforsaken case once and for all.
But I'm in no condition to go back inside.  I can't face my team.  I'm too raw.  Too far gone.  Already over that precipice and tumbling down the mountain.

I end the call and sigh.  In the kitchen, I find another lantern on the counter, light it, turn up the wick.  I want it light in here.  Crossing to the sink, I open the curtains.  Lightning flickers above the trees to the north.  A cool breeze wafts in, and I smell rain.  The storm would be perfect cover for a home invasion.  I go to the living room and pull open the curtains.  I want him to see me.  An Amish woman staying up late to mend trousers and socks or maybe work on a quilt.  Her family is already in bed for the night.  The doors are unlocked.  They are the perfect victims.
"Come on, you son of a bitch," I whisper.  "I'm waiting.  Come on in and get me."


10 months after solving The Slaughterhouse Killer murders, Kate Burkholder is faced again with a violent crime targeted this time on one Amish family...The autopsy reports focus specifically on the 15 year old teenage daughter as most likely the target of the violence.  The case becomes more than just a horrific case for Kate; it becomes a revisit to the violence in her past as a young Amish girl.  

What I Liked

The relationship between Kate and Tomasetti - while "together," their relationship doesn't consume either of them...they lead their own lives, deal with individual issues from the past without each other and then come together...both grasping for a chance at a happy future...but slowly.  They each have their vices and their nightmares, but they know that they have to deal with their own issues before they can help each other deal with being a couple.  

Amish culture - I love the inside information Castillo shares just at the right moments...the clash and conflict the Amish feel with the English, the positive aspects of their culture reinforced by Kate's warm feelings from her childhood, as well as Kate's realistic look at their differences, many of which are reasons she chose to leave the church.
I also appreciate Castillo's portrayal of the Amish as imperfect...the Amish are a community of people within which live many different personalities.  Those who are examples of the stereotypical Amish people and those who aren't.  Who'da thought the Amish liked to gossip?

Mary Plank - we only get to know Mary posthumously, but she is the epitome of young girls her age, Amish or not, who get in over their heads before they realize what's really happening.  As a mother of two teenage daughters, it is one of my biggest fears.  I sometimes think teenage girls are little rabbits we send out into a world of wolves.  And, no matter how much we prepare them, they are easily duped by slick talking fellas who know all too well how to schmooze and take advantage of their naivety.

What I Didn't Like

Lots of Suspects - the list was almost too long...By the time the killer is unveiled, I had to look back to see exactly which person he was...his connection and where he entered the story.  

I wanted to see Aaron Plank once more after Kate completely closed the case...it seemed there should be more to his story after Kate finding him and his lover at the house after the murders.  This was a loose end for me.

This crime takes place 10 months after The Slaughterhouse Murders.  I couldn't help but think that's actually a pretty short amount of time between murders in a small town.  I'd be pretty nervous if I lived in Painters Mill.  I realize there has to be more murder for there to be more books...but is it realistic for only that short amount of time to have lapsed? 

Overall Recommendation

If you like strong female characters, Amish culture, and a no holds barred murder mystery that turns your stomach and grabs your emotions, this is your book.


  1. Thanks for the review, but I won't be reading it!  Ha!  :)

    Thank you so much for all of the encouraging comments you have left me the last few weeks.  I really appreciate them!  Real life friends (even ones you haven't seen in 20 + years) are the best!  I am doing so well now.  And I know it is because of kind people like you praying for me and lifting my spirits with your kind words.

    I hope you are having a good week.  

  2. Diane@BibliophilebytheseaApril 11, 2012 at 5:52 AM

    This author seems to have quite a following already. I like the sound of this one.

  3. I'm entertained by these books.  I like the supporting cast of characters, and I'm enjoying the "courtship" of Kate and Tomasetti.  The Amish setting gives it an interesting twist as well.  But the author is going to have to move Kate somewhere else soon if she is going to keep catching murderers.  No way there is this much crime in one small Amish community.

  4. Ha! Sandy I agree totally!! The next book in this series is Gone Missing and it's due out in June...we'll see if Castillo can make that shift and keep her readers (you and me anyway) :)

  5. I've always had a fascination with the Amish community, Diane, so Castillo's books have been very interesting as well as hair raising.  Check her out :)

  6. I think about you everyday, Roan...my friend here is still contemplating some decisions to be made by this summer.  She has read your blog postings and appreciated so much your honesty and your positivity!   Thank YOU!  
    I wouldn't recommend this book for you at all ;)


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