House of Silence - Reviews

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"Brilliant book."
Lesley Cookman, author of MURDER TO MUSIC and MURDER IMPERFECT

"A story layered deep in pretence and secrecy, HOUSE OF SILENCE provides readers with the puzzle-solving pleasure of golden age detective fiction, complete with letter fragments from the past and the gothic backdrop of Creake Hall. The writing is sharp and crisp, with an edge of dark humour. Unwinding through the narrative like a chain is the hold that the dead have upon the living. I loved it."
Rosy Thornton, author of THE TAPESTRY OF LOVE and HEARTS AND MINDS

"Linda Gillard's heroes are always gorgeous, sexy & irresistible. I've read all her novels & loved all her heroes but Marek is very special. He can even make old, grey pyjamas sexy... HOUSE OF SILENCE is a compulsively readable book. It's a compelling story of family secrets & lies, set in a crumbling Elizabethan mansion at Christmas in the depths of a freezing Norfolk winter. The heroine is smart, independent & compassionate. The hero is, quite frankly, gorgeous."
From a review on I Prefer Reading book blog

"HOUSE OF SILENCE is one of those books you'll put everything else on hold for. Twice, I sneaked back to bed after breakfast just to read a few more chapters before the day proper began - I didn't want to put the story aside, I wanted to find out what would happen next... You can rely on Linda for a highly readable book, a true page-turner which has a very neatly finished ending... Warm as one of Hattie's quilts, yet with a dark underside, its themes of memory, identity, and sense of self the layers in between. It's beautifully put together and enormously enjoyable."
From a review at Cornflower Books

"If you like dysfunctional Christmases, snowy gardens, peculiar mothers, gothic houses, mystery photos, a bit of quilting, attractive Polish gardeners who play the cello, or any combination of the above, get downloading!"
From a review at Harriet Devine's Blog

Linda receiving her prize as runner-up
for the Pure Passion award
with her first novel,

"This book really does defy classification. There's a family drama and a country house mystery which could stand up on its own. There's romance in there, but it's not of the typical chick-lit type and sometimes the tension is such that you have to remind yourself to breathe. Normally if I reviewed a book with all these attributes I'd be suggesting that the author should make up their mind rather than throwing everything into the mix and hoping that the reader will find something which appeals, but that's not the case here - this is an author at the top of her form who knows exactly what she's doing. Brilliant. It's an intelligent book for people who like their reading to challenge them...

The book is intricately plotted, with some great characters who stay with you long after you've finished reading. I've surprised myself by being just a little bit in love with one of them - but I'm not going to tell you who!"

From a review at

"HOUSE OF SILENCE effortlessly captivates. The story, which weaves the tension and isolation of the gothic novel into a mystery that winds its threads around a discourse on familial ties, does not disappoint from its first sentence to its last.... A story full of moments: insightful moments that reverberate against an inner thought, perception or emotion; quiet, hold-your-breath moments that are sweeter for their bare simplicity; gasping moments at the precipice of a fall. HOUSE OF SILENCE invokes one of the best reading experiences: it's voraciously read, and lingers on."
From a review at Tempting Persephone book blog

"The comparison to COLD COMFORT FARM and to REBECCA is very apt. I was amused, touched, and effectively creeped out in turns. And I had a very good time attempting to decipher the mystery, to figure out just exactly what dark secret lay lurking under the quirky surface. The answer, by the way, doesn't disappoint. And I would be remiss if I didn't mention the touch of romance in this book. I've loved that aspect of Ms. Gillard's previous books, and she comes through once again here in an extremely moving, tasteful, and unexpected way... HOUSE OF SILENCE is a perfect choice for a rainy day or an evening in front of the fireplace."
From a review at Angieville book blog

"(Gillard's) consistently smart writing and fully-fleshed characters are the only recommendation I need to read anything she writes... The well-paced family mystery, which unfolds piece-by-piece is surprising and satisfying at every turn. An unconventional mix of drama, mystery, and romance, HOUSE OF SILENCE is a page-turner that will surely please many different kinds of readers."
From a review at Bookharbinger book blog

"...The family turns out to have more secrets than the Pentagon. I enjoyed every minute of this book. It's written with considerable panache and humour, despite the fact that there's a very serious underlying thread to the book - how do we, as individuals and families, deal with tragedy?"
Kathleen Jones, author of A PASSIONATE SISTERHOOD and MARGARET FORSTER: A Life in Books.

Linda pictured at Inverewe Gardens
in Wester Ross

"HOUSE OF SILENCE is a tricky book to define. It has mystery, romance, skeletons in the closet, a decrepit family manor house and a fair few emotional truths. I read it in one weekend, completely absorbed by the world the author creates.

...The entire novel is suffused with a sense of place. Both the Norfolk location, with windmill, sea mists and December chills; and Creake Hall, the seen-better-days Elizabethan manor, with formal gardens and draughty attics, are beautifully realised and atmospheric. The hall becomes a character in itself.

...HOUSE OF SILENCE reminded me of several other well-loved books, such as Cold Comfort Farm, The Pursuit of Love, Janice Gentle Gets Sexy and The Little Stranger and was a delightful way to spend a weekend."

From a review by JJ Marsh at Triskele Books blog

"A totally engaging read full of warmth and perception."
Victoria Connelly, author of A WEEKEND WITH MR DARCY and THE BOOK LOVERS

"This is a book in which it is so easy to lose yourself, at once emotional and mysterious. I really enjoyed it - the characters are so distinctive and complex, and the setting in an old Elizabethan manor house is perfect."
From a review at Booksplease book blog

"Linda has a style that is very much her own and is instantly recognisable no matter what genre her books may fall into - sparky, witty and quirky, but never tipping over into being too clever for its own good. I thoroughly enjoyed this book and am already looking forward to her next, no matter what format it is in."
From a review at Random Jottings of a Book & Opera Lover

"An intriguing and absorbing read... Linda's books aren't all the same; she's too good and interesting a writer for that. But if you've enjoyed themes in her other books like quilting, family (especially family histories), mysterious goings-on that don't add up, then you'll enjoy this one too. And of course there's a brooding hero - or rather two..."
BookCrosser Liz Dexter (LyzzyBee)