It’s been ages since I’ve read an American police procedural, but I cut my crime teeth on Ed McBain’s precinct novels so it’s a genre I’m familiar with – I’m not sure why I hadn’t revisited before. Too many books, too little time! The Silenced Women by Frederick Weisel is an ambitious, deftly written debut.
Set in San Fransisco, this is the start of a new series revolving around the Violent Crimes Investigation Team. Lead detective Eddie Mahler is plagued by migraines brought on by his failure to catch a serial killer some years before. When a women turns up dead in a park, he worries that the killer is back. Newest team member Eden Somers is a woman with secrets, and a gift. Her complete immersion in the cold case finds a new clue that could unlock everything.
But is the murder a continuation of the horror before, or an entirely new beast? Better hope Eddie and the team find out quickly…!
People who suffer with migraine will probably particularly appreciate the way Weisel writes them. Eddie particularly rang very true for me as a character – the way a victim haunts him is particularly unnerving and moving.
I enjoyed this one – it’s not an easy read, there are lots of very well drawn characters with quick dialogue demanding your attention and concentration (you get the criminals viewpoints as well as the units), so I found if I read before bed I might have to reread a bit the next day incase I’d missed something. It’s worthy of paying attention though – I can see this new series proving very popular!