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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Hard-Boiled-Egg Legacy of Violet
Using a crisp, biting, time-warp prologue (or first chapter acting as a prologue) is a classic way of opening a P.I. mystery. I admire the heck out of the juicy artistic feel of this opening style, yet I generally have a hard time getting into a story with any type of preliminary literary shenanigan which doesn't sit me right down into an ongoing, "right-now" narrative...
Published on Oct. 3 2006 by Linda G. Shelnutt

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Am I the only one who didn't get it?
I have read and enjoyed all of the alphabet so far, but I believe that Sue Grafton is getting bored and she is testing her readers to see if we are really taking any notice of what she is writing. Am I the only reader who thought the ending didn't make any sense whatsoever? I thought I must have missed a chapter by mistake and I read over most of the book again to try to...
Published on Sept. 18 2006 by Wellread


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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Am I the only one who didn't get it?, Sept. 18 2006
This review is from: S is for Silence (Hardcover)
I have read and enjoyed all of the alphabet so far, but I believe that Sue Grafton is getting bored and she is testing her readers to see if we are really taking any notice of what she is writing. Am I the only reader who thought the ending didn't make any sense whatsoever? I thought I must have missed a chapter by mistake and I read over most of the book again to try to make the connection but I couldn't. Of course I can't give away the ending so I can't specify the most illogical aspect of the story, but how would that last item that she pursues stand up in even an imaginary courtroom as any kind of evidence that the person involved was responsible for anything. Sue, you are running out of steam. Where is the evolvement of Kinsey's private life? It has moved along a little in previous books but it has now come to a standstill. I fear that my alphabet ends at 'S'. I have always waited impatiently for the next book but at the end of "Silence" I feel no desire to look for 'T'.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Hard-Boiled-Egg Legacy of Violet, Oct. 3 2006
By 
Linda G. Shelnutt "Mystery Novelist" (Rockvale, CO USA) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: S is for Silence (Hardcover)
Using a crisp, biting, time-warp prologue (or first chapter acting as a prologue) is a classic way of opening a P.I. mystery. I admire the heck out of the juicy artistic feel of this opening style, yet I generally have a hard time getting into a story with any type of preliminary literary shenanigan which doesn't sit me right down into an ongoing, "right-now" narrative. So, yes, I had a resistance to overcome prior to reading "S," even though I had read compulsively from "A" through "R."

I slid fairly easily into Kinsey's "I am a..." intro in chapter 2, with the bar/lunch scene in which Millhone reluctantly met her client over a "to drool for," scrumptiously described grilled kaiser roll with salami and pepper-cheese, fried-egg, innards. The melted white cheese infused with red-pepper-flakes definitely hot glued me onto a bar stool along with the characters. The usual Quarter Pounder with cheese would have worked, too, but, for whatever reasons, Kinsey somehow got the gourmet bug in "S."

Once the flow of the flashback chapters seated into the flow of the "I-Kinsey" narrative, I noticed that the Third Person narratives were deeply engrossing as well as intriguingly and stylishly written. I would certainly understand if Grafton had an itch to explore moods and thought patterns inside-the-heads of characters with varying degrees of anti-heroic traits, who would be vastly divergent from Kinsey in behavioral motivation and rationalization techniques. With tremendous panache, Grafton painted these rich psychological portraits from "inside-the-hearts-of-sinners-and-saints," and she blended them so seamlessly into the 1987 reality that I began to lose track of the 30-yr-cultural-gap, even though the 50's icons, idioms, and inlets-to-the-past were firmly crayoned into each July 1953 chapter.

Though some of the facts uncovered held a dark horror more like King's work than Grafton's, and though that ambiance was released abruptly, I felt no let down with the ending, and possibly the forewarning in the reports helped me there. The full circle, yummy symbolism of the kimono and the kaiser roll was awesome.

"S" is more a work of literary art, a true and classic novel with an experimental edge in the narrative machinations of the psychological profiling chapters, than it is a standard offering of detective fiction, though, for me, it also satisfied the cravings of that genre. After the plot signed off, I was left with a compulsion to reread several parts, then with a desire to reread the whole, cover to cover. This book has too much psychological pith to get it all in a single run through (given a challenged memory bank like mine).

The epilogue left me with the peaceful, haunting essence of the first sight of cherry blossoms after an extended, bone chilling winter.

Only one question remained for me as I closed the book:

Sue has many times earned the most exquisite, leading-edge, oil-painting renditions of the thematic essence of each of her books. So. Why is one of the classiest, most astute and revered publishing houses putting out Sue Grafton's phenomenal series with no artwork on the book-jackets?
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5.0 out of 5 stars A Cold Case Solution Is Unearthed, July 15 2006
By 
Donald Mitchell "Jesus Loves You!" (Thanks for Providing My Reviews over 124,000 Helpful Votes Globally) - See all my reviews
(#1 HALL OF FAME)    (TOP 50 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: S Is For Silence (Paperback)
Solving a cold case is extremely challenging for a detective. Writing about solving a cold case is even tougher. You can easily get so caught up in unraveling the tattered mystery that you bore your readers silly. A particularly tricky task is to make readers care.

Sue Grafton has written one of the most satisfying cold case stories that I've ever read. She makes the missing person, Violet Sullivan, both sympathetic and off-the-wall. At the same time, Ms. Grafton shows how an unsolved disappearance leaves everyone who cared about the person wounded to the core. They are victims too. In the case of S Is for Silence, some of the victims are more sympathetic than others . . . but they are all interesting.

The book mainly succeeds because Ms. Grafton creates an interesting series of characters and plot interactions both in her flashback chapters and in her development of Kinsey's investigation.

Ms. Grafton wisely keeps the investigation short. The mystery is unraveled in five days. To have strung the investigation out would have made the book boring, in my judgment. I was very impressed to find that the flashback information wasn't a direct hint as to how Kinsey would solve the mystery. She followed her own unique path.

Those who like to focus on Kinsey and her life as a single woman won't find this book very satisfying. The cold case is the story. Kinsey's friends and family have barely cameo roles in this book.

For those who like a classic missing person's story against the backdrop of volatile relationships in a small California town, this book will, however, be the right stuff.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Time to move Kinsey forward 20 years,, March 8 2006
This review is from: S is for Silence (Hardcover)
Does Sue Grafton ever curse her publishers (and herself) for promising a 26-volume series? By setting this book twenty years ago, in 1986, Grafton limits her possibilities. Kinsey can't move forward and grow. So she recedes into the background and frankly, she could be a lot more interesting than the supporting cast. By Case #20, she should be advancing her career and her life. It's hard to avoid comparison with Sharon McCone, a self-employed detective who began sleeping in a room in a legal commune. Now she's got her own business, her house, a pilot's license and an amazing Significant Other.
I liked the flashbacks - a nice change of pace. In fact, I started to care about the characters we met in the first few pages. Why would a grown woman befriend a 13-year-old adolescent? Why does this teen lead such a lonely life? But all the characters seem rather sleazy, almost interchangeable with characters in the other Grafton alphabet novels.
Grafton is a smart, talented writer. Can't her publishers let her introduce a new heroine? If you are looking for a great mystery novel try ' Giorgio Quest '. by Giorgio_K.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Best to date, Jan. 1 2006
By A Customer
This review is from: S is for Silence (Hardcover)
This is the best Millhone mystery novel Grafton has written yet. Chock full of suspense and thrills. I would highly recommend it to any of her fans, as well as a first time reader of her works. I also suggest David Demello's The Killing Game and James Patterson's Mary, Mary, two other very good suspense thrillers.
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4.0 out of 5 stars one of her better books, March 26 2006
By A Customer
This review is from: S is for Silence (Hardcover)
I've been reading this series from the beginning, so by habit I picked up this one and I'm happy I did.
I read it in 2 sittings and like someone posted above I really cared about the characters.
Although I found her last book dated (R for Ricochet) this one wasn't and was quite enjoyable.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Great book on CD., June 21 2010
By 
Jean Adam (ROCKDALE, TX, US) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: S Is For Silence (Audio CD)
I received my book on cd quickly and in great shape. I have listened to half of it so far and there has not been one problem with the cd's. Thanks for a great purchase. Jean
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5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars, Oct. 20 2014
By 
M. Legare "Mikey 26" (Downtown Montrel, Quebec, Canada) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: S is for Silence (Hardcover)
Great book, I have read them all and they are all wonderful
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S Is for Silence
S Is for Silence by Sue Grafton (Audio Cassette - Dec 6 2005)
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