Reviewed by Tori
Favorite Quote: “We are the children of the gods.”
Welcome to the town of Whisper Hollow. If you’re here, then you were meant to be. My name is Kerris Fellwater. I left Whisper Hollows fifteen years ago but was called back when my grandmother, the town’s spirit shaman passed away. I’m the new spirit shaman and it’s my job to guide the dead to their graves and keep them there.
When my best friend Peggin finds herself cursed, I and the town matriarchs work hard to break the curse while trying to uncover a mystery from the turn of the century. A mystery that our enemies, the Hounds of Cu’ Chulainn, will do anything to keep buried.
But secrets, like the dead, never stay buried for long in Whisper Hollow.
Shadow Silence is the second book in Galenorn’s spooky Whisper Hollows series. This dark urban fantasy series is drenched in magic, mythology, suspense, mystery, and romance. Set in the fictional town of Whisper Falls, Washington, Galenorn picks up where book one-Autumn Thorns- left off. Galenorn builds an intriguing storyline, deepening the characterization of the residents and entities that protect and terrorize the town. A multi-layered mystery is used to further expand the world, connecting it all back to our heroine and her growing powers.
Kerris Fallwater returned home to claim her destiny after running away fifteen years ago. As the town’s new spirit shaman and worshiper of the Goddess Mórrígan, Kerris helps to lay the dead to rest and protect the town from its enemies. She is settling into her grandparent’s home nicely, slowly claiming it as her own as she submerges herself deeper into the town and it’s needs. Her relationship with her guardian/boyfriend, a shape shifter named Brian, is developing at a comfortable if not slightly rapid speed, giving Kerris the love support, and unconditional acceptance she has searched for all her life.
Kerris has a lot on her plate in this installment. While the main focus of the story is on Peggin (Kerris’s best friend) and her fight to free herself from the clutches Lady of Crescent Lake, Kerris is also pulled into a battle with Magna (a powerful worshiper of Cu’ Chulainn) while uncovering some interesting facts concerning the town’s history. The pacing is fast and steady with some action and suspense as Kerris finds herself a mystical go between in the fight to save the town. Various plot threads are created, giving us hints towards future story lines. I like that Galenorn reminds us that no one in this town is exactly as they seem on the surface and slowly skews the information we already know about them into something new to be explored.
While I enjoyed the main plot of the story and the various story lines it births, I found the dry narrative at times overwhelming as Galenorn seeks to open Kerris up more to readers. There is an inordinate amount of time spent on day to day actions that become repetitious as the story progresses. We are repeatedly told in great detail about Kerris’s insecurity towards her breasts, her eating/drinking habits, her bathing routines, and exactly what and how often she feeds her cats. These details became overwhelming and took away from the overall atmosphere of the story, creating times when I felt I was wading through filler to get to the meat of the story. I was also a little out out by the plotline concerning Peggin’s boyfriend Divine and how Galenorn uses it to resolve a minor issue. It felt like a round piece being shoved into a square peg.
The ending is a series of climatic events that firmly resolve the conflicts while allowing plenty of room for the arc to continue to expand. While book one was a bit heavy on world building, this installment lasers it’s focus on the characters and further solidifying their places in the story.
Fans of Yasmine Galenorn and urban fantasy that maintains a steady romantic element while offering readers action, suspense, and mystery on a strong mythological base are sure to enjoy her latest series.