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In "A River of Silence," the third Detective Radhouser book, Radhouser is called upon to investigate his least favorite kind of crime: one involving the death of a child. On the other side of the story, Caleb Bryce is racked with guilt over failing to prevent the death of his girlfriend's toddler son. But who is really behind it?
"A River of Silence" is a murder mystery, but it's also the story of two families, Bryce's and Radhouser's. Bryce is desperate to build a family after being abandoned as a child and losing his own daughter as an infant; Radhouser's attempts to create a second family after his first was destroyed in a car accident are jeopardized when his wife becomes ill. Both men struggle to find acceptance and forgiveness for the people who caused them so much pain. The murder mystery is deftly handled and ends with shocking twist, but just as compelling for the reader is how the family dramas will be resolved and whether Radhouser and Bryce will be able to put the past behind them and move on.
The silence referred to in the title could be taken as referring to many things. Most obviously, Bryce is hearing impaired and lives in a kind of semi-silence. All the characters struggle with loss and the silence of those who have been taken from them. And perhaps silence also suggests the peace that can be found in acceptance and forgiveness. This is a murder mystery that will tug at the heartstrings, but also gives hope that it is possible to come back from suffering and loss and find peace with one's life.
My thanks to the author for providing a review copy of this book. All opinions are my own.
I started reading this book, a book I found as I perused through Amazon for a new read. The beautiful cover caught my attention, as did the affordable price. The description definitely grabbed me in just the right way. I knew this book would be one I'd truly enjoy. I was wrong -- I enjoyed it so much, I came to love it too! I was rooting all through the story for the accused character!
As I absorbed the story, the events were becoming more and more compelling, as each page was absorbed, I had to see what was happening after that and after that . . . enjoyment of this book was not dependent on reading others in the series. With that said, there is no stopping me reaching for the others right away!
Susan Clayton-Goldner is one of the consistently best writers I have discovered recently. Her Winston Radhauser mysteries are particularly good.
In this novel, Radhauser has to solve the case of a deaf man accused of murdering a child who has been living with him – supposedly because the boy’s mother is planning to go back to her husband and take her children with her. Despite the bad day the accused man, Caleb Bryce, has just before the toddler’s death, you are pretty sure he didn’t do it. But the actual murderer is, as usual, not who you think it is.
It takes Radhauser and his colleagues, the new public defender – Kendrick Huntington Palmer IV (Kendra) – and Kendra’s famous defense attorney father all working together to find the real murderer. Along the way, Radhauser and Bryce and even Kendra have to learn some lessons about forgiveness and letting go.
Thanks to the author for a free copy of this book for review.
An intriguing mystery and courtroom drama and very well-written for the most part. I give it four stars rather than five for two reasons. I felt the the background on Radhouser and Bryce was repeated too many times. It's difficult to draw a balance between telling and showing when dealing with motivation caused by past experiences but it would have been worth the effort here. The other point is minor but was like fingernails on a blackboard to me. Bryce finds out that he has a nephew with the same name going to college in Ashland, and yet with all of the media circus surrounding the trial, one would think the nephew would have faced repercussions because of his name but there was no indication of that. It had nothing to do with the plot so it just seems to be an unnecessary coincidence and added nothing to the story. I also found it a little unlikely that the solution wasn't reached much earlier in the investigation.
I'm so glad I discovered Susan Clayton-Goldner. What a super writer! This fourth book of hers that I've read is probably my favorite. The characters have been given so much depth, and every emotion I can think of is portrayed in this story: grief, love, hate, depression, joy, misery, hope, forgiveness, jealousy, etc. While we've met Detective Winston Radhauser in previous books, this is when we really get to know what has made him who he is. The other main character, Caleb Bryce has been imprisoned for the murder of a toddler; as we follow the story, we are able to determine whether, or not, he is guilty.
I, especially, enjoyed the poetry interspersed with the story. I mean, I have won a couple of national poetry contests and love good poetry but wouldn't be able to, possibly, come up with something this expressive and downright beautiful!
I liked this story for the twists and turns that occurred. I also liked that the main character was hearing impaired. It is rare to see someone with a disability in a story, although there have been some authors that use them. But I really liked how the author worked through the issues as the story moved along. I would have given it five stars, but sometimes too much background explaining can pull you off track from the story. It is better, in my opinion, to have it come out gradually in flashbacks, or conversation, but that's just my preference. Overall, I enjoyed this story a lot.
This is the first book I've read by Susan Clayton Goldner, but it will not be my last. Her writing is impressive with enough detail to ensure reader understand everything and just enough detail to create beautiful mental beginnings to each Character. My description does not do her book justice, and I'm looking forward to ordering another of her books as soon as I close this review. Do yourselves a favor and check it out.
I am a big fan of series books. It hard to let characters go sometimes, like watching tv shows that pull you into their story line. That’s exactly how I feel about Detective Radhouser. River of Silence is heartwarming and very sad. It is a story, that throughout , I thought I had it figured out, and again the author twist it around. My favorite! I am also intrigued with a new character in this book, the public defender Kendra, a sweet tough lady. Fighting to make her own way in life without the help of her father. A father, a well know attorney, that wants nothing more than have his daughter in his practice. Not a happy man when she decides a different path in life. All in all an excellent book. Thank you Susan Clayton-Goldner for continuing your stories of Detective Radhouser.