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Other Authors, Books or Groups > The Weight of Silence - Edgar Nominee Group Read

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message 1: by Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl, Colorful Colorado (new)

Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl (dustpancrazy) | 786 comments Mod
Please use this discussion thread as we read and discuss The Weight of Silence :-) use *Spoiler Alert* as needed. Happy Reading!
The Weight of Silence by Heather Gudenkauf


message 2: by Christine (new)

Christine I started this one today. Its pretty good so far!


message 3: by Laurel (new)

Laurel (laureljean) I still plan on reading both it and Await Your Reply, but life has intervened. It may take me awhile.


message 4: by Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl, Colorful Colorado (new)

Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl (dustpancrazy) | 786 comments Mod
I read a few pages and then set it aside - ummm, maybe I'll get to the Weight of Silence in June sometime. I'm still planning on reading it though :-)


message 5: by Laurel (new)

Laurel (laureljean) Good! Then I'll have company!


message 6: by Christine (new)

Christine This book will be hard to read if you have children in your life, whether they are your own or not. It has to do with your worst nightmare, the disappearance of children. Its kind of creeping me out.


message 7: by Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl, Colorful Colorado (new)

Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl (dustpancrazy) | 786 comments Mod
Well, that sounds like fun! Geez, we picked some creepy books for the Spring Group Reads :-)


message 8: by Christine (new)

Christine I know I was thinking the same thing! :)


message 9: by Jan C (new)

Jan C (woeisme) | 119 comments I don't want to say I told you so ... but I did.


message 10: by Christine (new)

Christine I finished Weight of Silence. It was very good. It was actually better than I thought it was going to be after reading the first few pages which really gave me the creeps. I will write my review later today and hope to hear some of your comments.


message 11: by Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl, Colorful Colorado (new)

Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl (dustpancrazy) | 786 comments Mod
I probably won't get to this until June :-( but I'm glad to hear good things - that'll motivate me to read it!


message 12: by Christine (new)

Christine Silence unleashes a series of tragic events in this novel. Its appropriately titled The Weight of Silence.


Susan (aka Just My Op) (justmyop) I enjoyed this one more than I thought I would. I especially liked the way that each chapter written from a different person's perspective worked.


********* SPOILER ***********

Was anyone else surprised by who dunnit? I thought that it couldn't have been one of the people who looked the most suspicious but hadn't actually guessed the right person, although it had flitted through my mind and out again.


message 14: by Christine (new)

Christine *****Spoiler****

The person who dunnit kind of disappeared from the story and that made me suspect him.

I, too, liked how it was written from the different perspectives. It really picked up the pace for the novel with that and the relatively short chapters.


message 15: by Laurel (new)

Laurel (laureljean) I'm halfway through...hope to finish by the weekend.


message 16: by Jan C (new)

Jan C (woeisme) | 119 comments I passed on this reading because I am just not that crazy about children in peril. They are in peril enough these days.

But I was looking at reviews today on Amazon to find out whether I wanted to read it or not. I was at work and couldn't access Goodreads.

Anyway, one of the reviews commented that it was good that it was told from multiple points of view but the problem was that all of the views had the same vocabulary.

What do you think? Is that a valid point?


message 17: by Christine (new)

Christine I thought that is was an interesting way to tell the story and what lead up to the events captured in the novel. I'm not sure what the reviewer was complaining about. As far as I was concerned each character had its own voice told through their perspective.


message 18: by Jan C (new)

Jan C (woeisme) | 119 comments I think their complaint was that the 7-year old had the same vocabulary as the 57 year old, and everyone in between, including the professor.


Susan (aka Just My Op) (justmyop) That may very well be true, but it is something that I didn't notice while reading it so it didn't detract from the book for me.


message 20: by Janice (new)

Janice I have started The Weight of Silence, and finding it very readable, though disturbing. I like the structure, the varying characters voices, and am not finding them to all appear to be coming from the same source, at least at this point.


message 21: by Christine (new)

Christine I think the structure of the book is its real strength.


message 22: by Janice (new)

Janice I finished this today, I was glad to be through with it, even though it is very well written. My review:

There is nothing humorous or light about this book, and I was ambivalent about how I wanted to rate it. It is so well written, with such well-developed characters, but dealing with a horrorific subject, the brutalization of children, both physically and emotionally. I wanted to not be gripped by it, but was. The chapters alternately tell the story of both the present, and the past, from each of about 5 different characters perspective; almost everything happens in just one day, but as each character pushes through the terrors and anxiety of this one day they often reflect on happenings within their families in the past. Each character examines their own role in what is happening now, as well as what has transpired before. The story is very well plotted and paced, and even though I was pretty sure who the perpetrator was, I was rushing to get through and see how it all unfolded.


message 23: by Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl, Colorful Colorado (new)

Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl (dustpancrazy) | 786 comments Mod
I just picked this book up again and am finding it interesting :-) I hope it holds my interest.


message 24: by Christine (new)

Christine Janice, I'm glad you made it through the book. It was not an easy read because of its subject matter but I think very well written. Not a lot of authors can create such a complex story from so many points of view and be convincing.


message 25: by Janice (new)

Janice Thanks, Christine; I was glad I made it through too, and as you said, though it is not an easy read it is very well written, and convincing.
Dustin, hope you can stick with it, it is an absorbing read, and I will be interested to see what you have to say about it.


message 26: by Christine (new)

Christine Dustin, I am also curious to see what you think.


message 27: by Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl, Colorful Colorado (new)

Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl (dustpancrazy) | 786 comments Mod
I've continued to be intrigued by this story :-) I'm down to the last 100 pages now.


message 28: by Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl, Colorful Colorado (new)

Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl (dustpancrazy) | 786 comments Mod
Jan wrote: "Anyway, one of the reviews commented that it was good that it was told from multiple points of view but the problem was that all of the views had the same vocabulary.

What do you think? Is that a valid point?
"


YES! :-)


message 29: by Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl, Colorful Colorado (new)

Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl (dustpancrazy) | 786 comments Mod
Jan wrote: "I think their complaint was that the 7-year old had the same vocabulary as the 57 year old, and everyone in between, including the professor."

TRUE. I've noticed the same thing :-)


message 30: by Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl, Colorful Colorado (new)

Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl (dustpancrazy) | 786 comments Mod
Janice wrote: "There is nothing humorous or light about this book"

:-) You're right, there isn't much that's lighthearted in this book. Here is the best example of humor I could find in The Weight of Silence - the following passage made me smile at least :-)

"Oh, don't look so suspicious, Calli," Mr. Wilson chuckled.
"Talking is overrated. Blah, blah, blah. I listen to people talking all day! Then I go home and listen to my wife talking, and my kids talking, and my dog talking..." He slid his eyes toward Calli, who wrinkled her nose and smiled at the image of Mr. Wilson listening to a black Lab or German shepherd sitting at the kitchen table, talking about its day.
"Okay, so my dog doesn't talk, talk, but everyone else does. So this quiet will be good for me......"
-THE WEIGHT OF SILENCE by Heather Gudenkauf
The Weight of Silence by Heather Gudenkauf

I think it's great that the reader can look at the cover of this book and at certain point in the story, know who is wearing her favorite pink nightgown and why she's holding that musical charm necklace in her hands. I think they did a good job with the cover and I look forward to reading the next book by Heather Gudenkauf :-)


message 31: by Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl, Colorful Colorado (new)

Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl (dustpancrazy) | 786 comments Mod
Praise from one of my favorite authors :-)

"Deeply moving and exquisitely lyrical, this is a powerhouse of a debut novel. Heather Gudenkauf is one of those rare writers who can tell a tale with the skill of a poet while simultaneously cranking up the suspense until it's unbearable."
-Tess Gerritsen


message 32: by Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl, Colorful Colorado (new)

Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl (dustpancrazy) | 786 comments Mod
*Minor Spoiler Alert - Martin*

I've found the character of Martin very interesting - his range of emotions. That early chapter telling about his father's pig farm and about him buying that TV - it actually made my eyes water - it was a very moving, emotional section in the book.... and then later, Martin's rage on the mountain........it's interesting to view the range of human emotion.


message 33: by Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl, Colorful Colorado (new)

Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl (dustpancrazy) | 786 comments Mod
*Spoiler Alert* - Who Done It

This is one of the few mysteries where I guessed correctly early on who did it. Usually, like in the Scarpetta books for instance, there seems to be a "Scooby-Doo" answer to the mystery and I can never hope to guess right. I think that's another reason I enjoyed this book so much and gave it an "Amazing" 5-star rating :-)

I'm wondering if anyone picked up on the following hint like I did:

**MAJOR SPOILER ALERT - WHO DID IT* *MAJOR SPOILER ALERT**

"There you are, Calli," Dr. Higby tells Calli. "All done. The worst is over. Now we'll just finish getting you all cleaned up. You, Calli, are a very lucky little girl."
I see Calli's tranquil face freeze for a moment, then it changes. Her eyes begin to bulge and her skin fades to a sickly chalk color.
-ANTONIA in the hospital

**MAJOR SPOILER ALERT DIRECTLY ABOVE - WHO DONE IT**


message 34: by Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl, Colorful Colorado (new)

Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl (dustpancrazy) | 786 comments Mod
"When fairies dance upon the air, reach out gently and catch one fair. Make a wish and hold it tight, then softly toss your pixie back to summer's night."
-THE WEIGHT OF SILENCE


message 35: by Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl, Colorful Colorado (new)

Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl (dustpancrazy) | 786 comments Mod
"Sometimes I think that's what's wrong with Mom; she doesn't say what she should when she should."
-BEN


message 36: by Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl, Colorful Colorado (new)

Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl (dustpancrazy) | 786 comments Mod
"For once in my life, I think my dad looks old. Not ancient old, like an eighty-year-old man, but just tired old. Like a middle-aged man who spent too much time drinking and being mean to others, time sits on his face like some Halloween Mask."
-BEN on the mountain


message 37: by Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl, Colorful Colorado (new)

Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl (dustpancrazy) | 786 comments Mod
"She couldn't imagine that anyone would be interested in what she wrote. Everyone wanted to hear what she had to say, as if the words she said would somehow drip jewels."
-CALLI


message 38: by Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl, Colorful Colorado (new)

Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl (dustpancrazy) | 786 comments Mod
Loved how Ben told a fairy tale about Princess Calli and Princess Petra and was able to get more of the story this way from Calli.


message 39: by Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl, Colorful Colorado (new)

Dustin the wind Crazy little brown owl (dustpancrazy) | 786 comments Mod
*MAJOR SPOILER ALERT*
I thought the author did well to throw readers off the track by having two dogs on the mountain :-)
*MAJOR SPOILER ALERT DIRECTLY ABOVE*


message 40: by Christine (new)

Christine ***Spoiler Alert****

I was pretty sure I had figured out whodunit but the author did a good job of making you think that maybe you didn't quite have it. When she threw in the other dog, I thought "oh no, it can't be the counselor". That just wouldn't have been right.


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