<b>Simone St. James's</b> writing engrosses me, with unique settings augmenting interest. In "<b>Silence For The Dead</b>", Kitty has chosen a remote post: a mansion turned hospital for emotionally-injured veterans. She needs work as badly as they need nurses. <b>Simone's</b> other mysteries more cohesively honed-in on the crux of their plots. She crafts well-rounded backgrounds but the number of sidelines confuse the source of Kitty's nervousness: the patients, her past? There is a highly paranormal ending but the diluted suspense compounds with a delayed grasp of the timeline, which were essential to the story's impact on me.
The year is 1919 but <b>Simone</b> may have counted on knowledge of when WWI closed. It shook me out of the milieu I had envisioned all the way, to clarify that patients had only been there an average of six months. It made an astronomical difference, late in the mystery, to discover that the family tragedy that emptied their mansion only occurred one year earlier. That squashes an impression of ancient ghosts in an antiquated place and that anyone who knew them was presumably gone. It wasn't clear to me that there was a current unsolved crime.
<b>Simone</b> ties a detailed background together deftly but the mystery and paranormal structures took hold tardily. I enjoyed the journey of a nurse clandestinely leaning her job but the paranormal mystery felt like an add-on, rather than the primary secret we build to. I believe the focus would be tauter without Kitty's family sideline. More pages favoured job-related scenes and piqued a concealed patient, than a fearsome ghost and an appalling crime. Attention could have more immediately targeted excursions to the attic and hyping-up the Gersbach family. Nonetheless, <b>Simone's</b> affectionate and humorous outcomes had me smiling. I love how we have lifelong friends in everyone, including Matron.