2-3-4 Challenge Book Discussions #1 discussion

Breaking Silence (Kate Burkholder, #3)
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Breaking Silence > Question #14

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Lauren (laurenjberman) | 2239 comments Once the truth is revealed about Salome, did it alter your perception of earlier events such as her initial conversations with Kate and her relationship with Mose?


Charlene (charlenethestickler) | 1379 comments I wasn't sure how manipulative she had to be with Moses; after all, he was seventeen and could have instigated their hayloft activities himself.

It was when they both learned the reason why their uncle arrived from Pennsylvania that circumstances escalated rapidly. I do not think Salome would have been 100% responsible for Mose's actions, but she certainly did throw herself into criminal activity at some point. How soon I'm not sure. I'm still wondering about Mose's relationship to his parents' death and how that affected him.


Lauren (laurenjberman) | 2239 comments Charlene wrote: "I wasn't sure how manipulative she had to be with Moses; after all, he was seventeen and could have instigated their hayloft activities himself. "

I have my doubts about that. The fact that he was 17 and innocent and probably traumatized by his parents' death made it all the more easy for Salome to manipulate him and his raging hormones. Based on what we learn about her, I think she was the one to instigate the sexual relationship not him.

While she isn't solely responsible for Mose's actions (there is such a thing as knowing right from wrong), she definitely took advantage of him and I don't think he would have killed anyone if she hadn't lied about being molested and encouraged him.

As to the criminal acts she committed herself - she planted the rifle in Coulter's apartment, and she is the one who put the boys in the pit. Mose saved them by putting the ball in with them because he had finally realized what she was.


Charlene (charlenethestickler) | 1379 comments Do we know that she told Mose that her father was molesting her? Or did she make this up after Mose's death to make Mose look like the exclusive killer? I've just read the book, but I don't remember any hint of this until much later in the story when she was trying to convince the male authority figures of what an abused young girl she was.

I also have some problem thinking a fifteen-year-old Amish girl would make the first moves on her adopted brother.

I agree about the money jar and the rifle, although we get no hint about how the latter could have been achieved. I would have thought the Amish community watching over the children would have been pretty close supervisors. Obviously it happened behind the scenes.


Lauren (laurenjberman) | 2239 comments Yes, it is only at the end that Salome tells the sheriff that her father was molesting her and that when she told Mose, he went berserk and killed Solly. The impression that I got is that she wanted to put all of the blame onto Mose and this was the easiest way to accomplish that.

I have no doubt that Salome made it up and Adam more or less confirms this when he says that he doesn't believe Solly would do that.

Once Salome's actions became clear, I stopped thinking of her as an Amish girl. She is a sociopath who will stop at nothing to get what she wants and will remove any obstacle in her way. She wanted Mose and her parents and uncle were going to take him away so she made sure they couldn't do that. The fact that she is Amish only means that her behavior is all the more diabolical as there is no doubt that she was well aware of right and wrong. She simply didn't care.

I'm not sure exactly how Salome or Mose planted the gun. My assumption is that they walked to his apartment and gained access under some pretext. It isn't explained.


Jonetta (ejaygirl) | 7619 comments Mod
Once it was revealed that Salome was the true manipulator, I questioned everything!

I do believe that she initiated the sexual relationship with Mose. There was nothing in his history to suggest that he would have taken advantage of her. She made up that whole mess about her father molesting her. Solly was a devout Amish man and if he was doing this, he wouldn't have taken the hard line with Adam.

I wanted to know how they got that gun placed in Coulter's home but suspect Mose did it during that time he was out and about pretending he was assaulted by those bigots.

I don't understand why Mose drove off with her after she put those boys in that pit. At that stage, he had to know she was diabolical. I knew from the beginning Mose was hiding something but had no idea it was anything close to this.


Charlene (charlenethestickler) | 1379 comments I did not mean to imply that Mose instigated the loft activity, but that as a teen, he might not have protested Salome's initiation of contact. She certainly was the criminal mastermind -- no doubt about that.


Jonetta (ejaygirl) | 7619 comments Mod
Ah, I understand. I'm sure Salome planned this carefully.


Lauren (laurenjberman) | 2239 comments Jonetta wrote: "I don't understand why Mose drove off with her after she put those boys in that pit.

Yes, this raises questions. On the one hand, Mose is like any other besotted teen and wanted to run off with Salome and have her to himself even though he knew what she was capable of. In his mind, she may have done it all for love of him and this must have stroked his ego.

On the other hand, it is possible that he simply wanted to get her away from Ike and Samuel before she actually killed them. By placing the ball int he pit, he may have felt he had done what he could to save them until someone came along.

Not sure he was thinking with the right brain here, lol!


Lauren (laurenjberman) | 2239 comments Charlene wrote: "I did not mean to imply that Mose instigated the loft activity, but that as a teen, he might not have protested Salome's initiation of contact. She certainly was the criminal mastermind -- no doub..."

I'm sure that Mose didn't protest at all. He is a teen with raging hormones after all.... That said, he had no way of realizing just how manipulative and twisted Salome really was.


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