The Silence Factory: Is Silence Truly Sanity?

The Silence Factory by Bridget Collin appears in Netgalley, and I cannot resist the author who wrote The Binding and The Betrayals. The premise of the story is exciting too: Sophia Ashmore-Percy found a species of spiders in 1820 off one of the remote Greek islands. Her husband, James, saw it as an opportunity.

Timelines

The story flits between Henry Latimer, an audiologist selling hearing aids, and Sophia Ashmore-Percy’s journal. In first person POV- Sophia, while Henry’s is a third person’s point of view. It makes things easier to read, because there is a lot to digest in the book.

Like most of her other work, The Silence Factory has a gothic vibe that is heavy on the description and the vibe that is almost sombre. There is also a sense of mystery in Henry’s time. While readers might already have the answer, the thrilling event hinges on Henry’s reactions in the book.

Characters

We have Edward Ashmore-Percy decades later as the counterbalance against Henry’s melancholic character. Their meeting was because of Edward’s deaf daughter, Philomel. Edward comments about how Henry sells noises while he sells silence. Intrigued, Henry learns about Teverton silk, a special fabric that reflects sound.

On the arrival at Cathermune House, I realise something is definitely off with the town of Teverton. The vibes are off and there is a mystery yearning to be solved, but no one will do it. Henry sets to do the job he’s hired for and soon develops a connection with Edward.

Story

There are many layers to The Silence Factory, much likes Bridget Collin’s other works. She clearly knows what her readers are expecting, so she skilfully keeps us guessing. While I am glad she gives me a new story, I often wonder at what cost. The story sometimes drags on, and Henry is a poor character to be solving mysteries.

He simply stumbles into things via sheer determination or pure luck, rather than actually good investigative skills. Sophia’s diary lends some background, but I feel that serves to confuse. The story becomes too complex for my liking.

Verdict

With the previous two books, I have some expectations. Unfortunately, the book just falls a little short. Henry is not a likable character or a hero. Most of the times I just feel sorry for the dude for being in the way. The supportive characters are barriers to the story, they are meant to support Henry, not turn him away every time he seeks some assistance in a foreign land.

There, I’ve said it, it was a disappointment.

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