Carrie Stuart Parks
All families have secrets, but in most cases, the immediate family shares the knowledge of those secrets.
In Relative Silence, Piper Boone learns there are so many secrets kept from her, she wonders if she ever really knew her family.
Though she attended school and worked for a while, Piper has only existed for the last fifteen years. The death of Dove, her three-year-old daughter, destroyed her marriage, her faith in God, and for a time, her will to live. She’s “hiding out” at her wealthy family’s island compound in South Carolina, trying to decide “what comes next.” Accepting a lunch invitation from a former classmate lands Piper in the crossfire of a mass shooting that leaves three people dead, including her friend. But it also brings Tucker Landry into her life. However, the forensic artist who risked his life to save Piper’s has demons of his own.
It wasn’t lost on me how quickly Tucker and Piper bonded over their brokenness. But while Tucker has support to reclaim his life, Piper is the pathetic daughter and sister, who spends too much money rescuing animals who are just as pathetic. Her weakness is tolerated as long as she stays in line and does nothing to upset her brother Tern’s career as a U.S. senator. Even the gift he gives Piper is to keep a secret.
When the mass shooter is found dead, supposedly by his own hand, police suspect Piper was the intended victim. James Vincent Cave was a disgruntled employee who’d lost everything after being fired from Boone Industries. The facts don’t add up though, and Piper is distracted as she searches for Joyce, the neighbor who left a message for her the day before the shooting. Trying to find Joyce, the island’s only other resident, will lead Piper to the truth of her own life and decades of family secrets.
Piper realizes she can’t trust her family, but she also doesn’t trust herself. Facing down her demons isn’t enough. She must battle genuine fears and phobias. She has to battle her loss of faith in God because what loving God would allow a child to die so violently? She makes deals with God to get her through, to give her this or that, with the answer always being silence. It isn’t until she prays for intercession on the behalf of others that Piper feels a peace inside her… and a new resolve.
And it will take all of that resolve when Piper faces down the family member who fed the “Curlew Island Curse” and spent decades killing.
The plot is complicated but not fantastical. The rules are different for the rich. What money won’t buy; power will stifle. Investigations never go too deep or last too long. Certain questions are never asked. Murders get called accidents.
While I still have questions—because I’m me—the climax of the story is like WHOA, and I was finally able to take a deep breath at the end.
This is my first read by Parks, but I will look for more.
A powerful family with lots of secrets. A forensic artist with his own tragedies. And a hurricane drawing bearing down on their private island.
Fifteen years ago Piper Boone’s only child died in a boating accident, and Piper’s almost perfect life came to an end too. After living through a divorce and losing her job, she retreats to Curlew Island and her childhood home—a secluded mansion for the politically powerful Boone family, who are practically American royalty.
But Piper’s desire to become a recluse is shattered when a mass shooter opens fire and kills three women at a café where Piper is having lunch. The crisis puts her family in the spotlight by dredging up rumors of the so-called Curlew Island Curse, which whispers say has taken the lives of several members of the Boone family, including Piper’s father and sister.
Forensic artist Tucker Landry also survives the shooting and is tasked with the job of sketching a portrait of the shooter with Piper. They forge a bond over their shared love of movies and tragic pasts. But when police discover a connection between the shooting and two more murders on Curlew Island, they face a more terrible lineup of suspects than they could have imagined: Piper’s family.
Unraveling the family’s true history will be the key to Piper’s survival—or her certain death.
Published by: Thomas Nelson
Publication Date: July 14th 2020
Number of Pages: 336
ISBN: 0785226184 (ISBN13: 9780785226185)
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