Where is Lara Mayhew?
Lara, a congressman's media assistant, suddenly quits her job—and disappears on the way to her Washington, DC, apartment.
Novice FBI agent Meg Murray, a childhood friend of Lara's, gets a message from her that same night, a message that says she's disillusioned and "going home." To Richmond, Virginia. Meg discovers that she never got there. And bodies fitting Lara's description are showing up in nearby rivers… Could she be the victim of a serial killer?
Meg is assigned to work with special agent Matt Bosworth, a hard-nosed pro in the FBI's unit of paranormal investigators—the Krewe of Hunters. They trace the route Meg and Lara took more than once in the past, visiting battlefields and graveyards from Harpers Ferry to Gettysburg. Places where the dead share their secrets with those who can hear… As Meg and Matt pursue the possibility of a serial killer, they find themselves in the middle of a political conspiracy. Is there a connection? If so, has Lara been silenced for good? And whom—besides each other—can they trust?
So first, the mystery. I don't read a ton of mystery or suspense books (though I'm starting to think I should!), so I don't have a lot of compare this to. I'd think that anyone who regularly does would have no problems guessing the identify of the serial killer in this one, but for me it was just enough of a mystery that I didn't really figure it out (not that I was actually trying to.) Thinking about it now, if there were clues I still don't see them, beyond the fact that it's (always) someone you know.
The romance was really very quick. Meg and Matt fall in love within a week. It's very easily explained by the fact that they both have something "more" than average (ie, their special abilities that put them on the Krewe) and so it's always been hard to fall in love with someone who didn't understand. Meg really dislikes Matt from the beginning tho, and I was hard pressed to understand their falling in love. I didn't really see any special attraction between them. Meg is very insecure about being the new girl, and her constant repeating of her qualifications got a little old, even if presented as a joke. I liked Matt quite a bit in general, despite my feeling iffy on the romance.
The biggest disappointment for me was that it's not set in New Orleans. Apparently the Krewe travels. I suppose the description of the book should have clued me in on that one but I kind of missed it. History buffs will love this, because it delves pretty deeply into Civil War history and the Underground Railroad, and while that was interesting, I felt that near the end it ruined the suspense aspect of the book. Graham kept throwing in a little more and a little more and a little more history. It's hard to maintain an elevated level of tension if you have to break for a couple pages to talk about the Civil War. ( I should remind you here that I was a history major, and that even I kept thinking "ok, let's get on with the story!")
All that said though, I am really enjoying the series as a whole and look forward to the next books (The Forgotten) as well as eventually going back to read the ones I skipped. It's a nice easy read with a bit of romance, a bit of history, a bit of "other", and some suspense. The ones I've read have fit that spot where you want something quick and fun that doesn't require much concentration- perfect summer reading!
The Silenced comes out today.