Monday, October 5, 2009

Sworn to Silence

Finally I have had a weekend where I have been able to get a few books finished up (although the TBR pile is just as high as ever). I thoroughly enjoyed Sworn to Silence by Linda Castillo. This is the first of what is supposed to be a new mystery series featuring Chief of Police Kate Burkholder. Burkholder grew up Amish and is now the Chief of Police in her hometown of Painters Mill, Ohio. (The set-up reminds me a bit of the Julia Spencer Fleming mystery series featuring Clare Ferguson).

In this first mystery, a serial killer has come to Painters Mill, killing and brutalizing his victims. Kate is forced to remember a horrible act she committed when she was fourteen after having been raped. While she looks to her past to try and find answers about the killings that are occurring, more law enforcement departments are called in. John Tomasetti has been assigned to assist with the mystery, and arrives in Painters Mill much to the annoyance of Kate. Tomasetti notices immediately that Kate is hiding something, even though he doesn't think she is involved in the crimes. Tomasetti has his own burdens he is carrying. His wife and daughters were killed by a criminal Tomasetti had been hunting for years. Since then he has been virtually worthless at his job, and is sent on this assignment as a way of getting rid of him.

I liked this mystery a lot. I connected with the characters and am anxious for the next installment. Almost all reviews I have read have been positive as well. There was just one negative review claiming that the story was predictable. Anytime I read a negative review of a book I really liked, it makes me evaluate a little more closely what is was I did like about the book, and why the reviewer felt so differently from me. As far as series mysteries go, yes, Sworn to Silence is much like some of the other series I enjoy so much. So maybe it is predictable in that sense. I don't find that a bad thing. However, I didn't know who the killer was, and didn't even hazard a guess. I felt like the book was very suspenseful and also a fast read.

I am adding this mystery series to my list of "must reads."

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