Review: Silence Fallen

February 20, 2017

Silence Fallen by Patricia Briggs cover

Silence Fallen by Patricia Briggs
Series: Mercy Thompson World #14
Rating: ★★★★

In the #1 New York Times bestselling Mercy Thompson novels, the coyote shapeshifter has found her voice in the werewolf pack. But when Mercy’s bond with the pack—and her mate—is broken, she’ll learn what it truly means to be alone…

Attacked and abducted in her home territory, Mercy finds herself in the clutches of the most powerful vampire in the world, taken as a weapon to use against alpha werewolf Adam and the ruler of the Tri-Cities vampires. In coyote form, Mercy escapes—only to find herself without money, without clothing, and alone in the heart of Europe…

Unable to contact Adam and the rest of the pack, Mercy has allies to find and enemies to fight, and she needs to figure out which is which. Ancient powers stir, and Mercy must be her agile best to avoid causing a war between vampires and werewolves, and between werewolves and werewolves. And in the heart of the ancient city of Prague, old ghosts rise…

I was a little worried when I saw that Mercy’s bond to Adam, and the Pack, was going to be broken. Again. The blurb makes it sound much more familiar than the reality of the circumstances are. I was thankful for that, because I might have been a bit frustrated had I been compelled to deal with the broken bond again. Honestly, for me, Mercy and Adam are so tightly wound that I know there is nothing that can break them apart. And that’s just the way I like it.

Fair warning: Mercy and Adam spend the majority of this book apart and out of contact. It’s not as bad as you might fear though, because we get ALTERNATING POVs. That’s right. You read correctly. Nearly every chapter switches back and forth between Adam and Mercy. It’s an interesting storytelling tactic, not least of which because the timeline isn’t linear. Patricia Briggs jumps around a bit in the timeline, and as the Author’s Note at the start says – pay attention to Mercy’s notes at the beginning of each chapter. The flow of the story worked very well for me, but if you don’t pay attention it might get a bit confusing.

This wasn’t the first time chocolate got me into trouble.

I’ve read this book twice now, the first time I could hardly process my feelings, so I had to re-read the entire series and then start again with fresh eyes. I’m not sure I’m beyond the fangirling still, to be honest. I loved this book. I get so frustrated with the relationship drama in some series, though I know it’s a popular way to keep the drama tense and the story fresh. Part of what I enjoy so much in this series is that the relationship is never the source of the drama. There are always outside factors that are driving the plot. It makes things so much more interesting.

I’m a mechanic, I fix things that are broken. I turn into a thirty-five-pound coyote. I have powerful friends. But when it comes right down to it, my real superpower is chaos.

Mercy continues to be one of the most subtle kick-ass characters that I read. She truly believes that she’s weaker than most everyone around her, and that is kind of true. I mean, she isn’t as strong or invulnerable as the vampires or werewolves. She doesn’t have as obvious of magic as the fae. But what she does have is an indomitable will. She survives. No matter what.

Better than that, though, is the fact that she does it without hiding or cowering from what she believes to be right. As Honey said about her previously, once Mercy has your back, she has your back. She will never give up, and she will do everything in her power to help you out. Despite the consequences to herself. Maybe that’s not as kick-ass as some other characters (whom I love as much), but you can’t deny that Mercy gets things done.

“I only get weirder the longer you know me,” I told him, quoting one of the T-shirts I’d gotten for my last birthday.

A large part of what makes this series so great is the characters. They’re incredibly complex. The werewolves aren’t just strong and turn into wolves. They are more prone to violence, and have to work hard to keep control of their tendencies in that direction. The vampires aren’t just sexual blood-drinkers, they’re dead and they kill people to survive. It’s hard to justify it, even within the world, even knowing some of them are much better than others. The fae aren’t simply powerful fairies. They’re the stuff of nightmares that our fairy-tales tried to warn us about.

And even still, with such generalizations, there are individual differences. Some characters, in all factions, are supremely intelligent and able to move the world like it’s their own personal chessboard. Some are manipulative as hell. Some care, but pretend they don’t. The machinations that each character is sometimes hiding makes them all fascinating. There are layers and layers to these characters, and often I don’t see them all until the end.

All these different characters, jockeying for position and power, playing a game that is larger than may even be understandable, make the world a fraught place – full of danger and intrigues around every corner.

[He] thought of himself as a peaceful man. But he couldn’t deny that there was beauty in violence, a battle between two well-trained warriors.

We’ve spent the entirety of our time with Mercy (and Anna and Charles) in the United States, which makes sense. But I found it really cool to visit Europe here. Especially Prague, which is a city that tugs at my heart. Though I’ve never been, I can say that the book set the feel for Prague, and Europe in general, making me feel and imagine that I could be there with Mercy. I appreciate the atmosphere that it built.

I was on the edge of my seat both times reading this book. The plot is full of tension. Mercy and Adam were still separated; outside forces were continuing to subtly guide events; and I was always wondering when the other shoe was going to drop.

Water is wet and vampires are treacherous.

I am struggling with how much to say about anything that happens here. There are a couple of things that I don’t even want to allude to. Forgive me for being a bit light on details about the specifics of the plot. I will say that Silence Fallen is an excellent addition to the Mercy Thompson world, and I can’t wait to see what happens next.

Angela

6 Comments

  1. Reply

    Inkling

    February 20, 2017

    RIVERMARKED was the last Mercy Thompson book I finished. I enjoyed the series and I loved Adam and Mercy, but I began to feel ambivalent towards the series. The synopsis for SILENCE FALLEN didn’t even interest me because, as you pointed out, haven’t they had their bond broken before? But your review reminds me of all the things I liked about the Mercy books. Maybe I’ll try the series again but with library books, that way if it doesn’t work out I didn’t lose any money. 🙂

    • Reply

      Angela

      February 20, 2017

      I think that River Marked feels like a natural ending point in the series for a lot of reasons – and I know that it wasn’t a favorite for a lot of people. But I think it’s worth checking out the following books from the library because there’re some awesome stories in them. And a lot of progress and change in the world.

      I did have some issues with Night Broken (detailed in my review) but I really like a lot that happens there too. And Fire Touched was great again too. But I think this one lands up with Silver Borne and Iron Kissed as one of my favorites. It was even more fun the second time around.

      • Reply

        navessaallen

        February 21, 2017

        Ha! I stopped at River Marked too and was happy with that. It did feel like a really natural ending. I think I’d been burned too many times by UF authors (Hamilton, Moning) to continue on with the series when I found out there were more books. One day, maybe…if it all ends well.

        • Reply

          Angela

          February 21, 2017

          Oh yeah, the burn of authors not knowing when to stop. Ugh. So many times I’ve been burned. With many series there’s a natural end to the story in sight, but I’ve never been sure where that would be with this series. And it’s not something I’ve thought about until just now.

          Huh. That’s kind of a disturbing thought to me. 😛 Well, I hope it doesn’t drag out too long, but I’m still enjoying it quite a lot. There’s still new and interesting things happening in the world that I want to read about, so I’m happy.

  2. Reply

    Bonnie @ For the Love of Words

    February 22, 2017

    The 14th installment?! Holy moly I’ve got some catching up to do. It’s one of my goals for the year but we’ll see how it goes. 🙂 Glad you’re still loving it!

    • Reply

      Angela

      February 22, 2017

      LOL! Well, 14th if you’re counting the Alpha and Omega (Anna and Charles) books too – otherwise, it’s the 10th of just the Mercy books.

      Where did you leave off?

      🙂

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