Title: The Silent Sister
Author: Diane Chamberlain
No. of Pages: 352
Origins: St. Martin’s Press
Release Date: 7 October 2014
Bottom Line: Entertaining but not outstanding
“In The Silent Sister, Riley MacPherson has spent her entire life believing that her older sister Lisa committed suicide as a teenager. Now, over twenty years later, her father has passed away and she’s in New Bern, North Carolina cleaning out his house when she finds evidence to the contrary. Lisa is alive. Alive and living under a new identity. But why exactly was she on the run all those years ago, and what secrets are being kept now? As Riley works to uncover the truth, her discoveries will put into question everything she thought she knew about her family. Riley must decide what the past means for her present, and what she will do with her newfound reality, in this engrossing mystery from international bestselling author Diane Chamberlain.”
Thoughts: One cannot help but feel for Riley. She must deal with so much all at once that is easy to forget just how young she is. She already lost her mother. Her brother is dealing with PTSD and unable to help her. She is the executrix of her father’s will and must deal with everything that entails, including the realization that she did not know her father as well as she thought she did.
However, because she is so young, her reactions are not as mature as they could be. She tends to trust where she shouldn’t and is too quick to make key decisions. She does not heed the advice of experts and has a tendency to act in her own self-interest first. The disconnect between what she faces and how she acts should not be as great as it is, and yet, it may cause some issues among readers.
There are few surprises in The Silent Sister. The story follows a predictable route of misdirection, miscommunication, and faulty decision-making that forces Riley to grow up a bit while she uncovers the truth about Lisa and her father. That which appears suspicious turns out to be relatively innocuous and vice versa. It does not detract from one enjoying the story, but it is not a story that is going to stand out among the rest of the offerings this year.