Thursday, April 21, 2016

Silence by Mercedes Lackey and Cody Martin

Silence is the latest book in the SERRAted Edge series, and while you may enjoy reading the series in order, it has been twenty years since the last book in the series was released and many years since I have read the series and I had no trouble picking it up so you can read the series in order or start with Silence without too many ***SPOILERS***

Staci Kerry has just been dumped in the small seaside town of Silence to live with her estranged, and often drunk mother.  She has been living with her father, but since he has remarried and his wife wants Staci's bedroom for her own son Staci has been shipped off to spend the next two years living with her mother.  The town is not what Staci expected - it seems to be stuck in a time warp from the 1950s and the town is in some sort of technology dead zone which means cell phones only work in one remote spot and there is only dial up internet access.  Desperate to escape and return to New York she reaches out to her friends only to have them drop out of sight one by one from her online connections.

Staci manages to find some friends in the local community who are outsiders just like her, and by some miracle finds herself the focus of attention from Sean Blackthorne, the youngest member of what passes for royalty in Silence.  As she goes deeper into his world she discovers that the world she has always known is a lie, there is magic in the world - and elves!  Staci has been caught up in an ancient feud between the light and dark elves, and the light is badly outnumbered in Silence.  Drawn deeper and deeper into the web of intrigue Staci struggles with what is happening at home - her mother is the local drunk and brings home the most unsavoury of men who see a teenage daughter as fair game, and the local cops are underwhelming in their policing of the streets of Silence.  Darkness is building, and if Staci and her friends can't stop them then there is nothing to stop Silence falling, and then another town, and another, and another.

The SERRAted Edge series began in the 1990s and blended together social commentary and fantasy to create a unique concept where children and teenagers at risk from things like underage prostitution, snuff films, child abuse, and cults come into contact with elves who have found a way to use magic and elven steeds to come into the world.  It was a concept that had me hooked and I am the very proud owner of a signed copy of Born to run (the first book in the series) that I had signed when Mercedes Lackey and Larry Dixon visited New Zealand many, many, many years ago. 

Silence is the first new book in the series written by Mercedes Lackey for two decades, and while I thoroughly enjoyed the elves and magic it did feel a little bit like the elves and magic 'stuff' took centre stage over the social commentary side of things - Staci was in a rather bad situation but it wasn't explored as much as other books in the series.  I could be being a little unfair here as it has been a number of years since I read any of the books in the series and I am now in the position of looking at my bookshelves and wondering if I should read them again!  Silence is a solid addition to the series and if this is your first taste of the SERRAted Edge then I seriously encourage you to read the rest of the books in the series, and recommend that you read the other urban fantasies that converge with this version of the world.

If you like this book then try:

  • Born to run by Mercedes Lackey and Larry Dixon
  • Wheels of fire by Mercedes Lackey and Mark Shepherd
  • When the bough breaks by Mercedes Lackey and Holly Lisle
  • Chrome circle by Mercedes Lackey and Larry Dixon
  • Knight of ghosts and shadows by Mercedes Lackey and Ellen Guon
  • Summoned to tourney by Mercedes Lackey and Ellen Guon
  • Children of the night by Mercedes Lackey
  • Jinx high by Mercedes Lackey
  • Blood price by Tanya Huff
  • Summon the Keeper by Tanya Huff
  • Spiders bite by Jennifer Estep
  • Angel's blood by Nalini Singh
  • Kitty and the midnight hour by Carrie Vaughn
  • Moon called by Patricia Briggs
  • Cry wolf by Patricia Briggs

Reviewed by Brilla

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