Saturday, December 2, 2023

Book Review - Lake Silence by Anne Bishop


Lake Silence by Anne Bishop is about a human woman, Vicki DeVine, who is trying to get her life back in order after going through a divorce. Vicki was awarded her husband, Yorrick’s, family resort as part of her divorce settlement. She decides to fix up the place and open it up as a resort for both humans and Others alike. She hopes that she can get enough visitors to help support herself.

In this world, humans and animals are not the only beings that populate the world. There are extraordinary creatures that are called Others. They can be elemental, vampires, shape shifters, and even other scary things that go bump in the night.  The area that her resort is located on, Lake Silence, is controlled by these Others. Human laws do not apply here. It is something that every visitor and resident of Lake Silence must remember because if someone breaks the rules, they will face the consequences. 

As Vicki hopes to finish renovating the resort and start over, her lodger, Aggie Crowe, found a dead body on the property. Aggie is a member of the shape shifting Crow Other group. Vicki worries that the dead body would cause more trouble to be stirred up and may interfere with her renovating plans.

Detectives are called to the scene to help figure out who the victim is. As they investigate the murder, it is made very clear that nothing human could have killed the victim based on the condition the body was left in. However, the detectives still try to pin the death on Vicki. Vicki is desperate to prove that she is innocent and tries to find out who is behind the murder. As Vicki enlists her friends for assistance, it is discovered that someone has broken one of the rules set by the Others, and the Others will stop at nothing to enact punishment.

The novel is a standalone but takes place in the same world as another book series by the author. The book was easy to follow even though I am not familiar with the world. It did move a bit slowly with chapters after chapters of nothing happening. There were a few things I had to learn, like the days of the week in this fictional world, and the different types of Others. The author included a nifty section detailing some aspects of the world to make it easier for readers who are not familiar with her books and characters. I was confused that they put the “Lady of the Lake” on the cover as she was a minor character and didn’t really have much to do with the plot. It was a bit annoying because I had picked up this book based on the cover alone. I guess this teaches me not to judge a book by the cover.

The book started off okay but after a few chapters in I couldn’t stand Vicki DeVine. She was an annoying, blubbering fool. She sits there and feels sorry for herself yet does nothing. The only thing she does is talk about how “yummy” her vampire lawyer is and about various characters’ “vigorous appendages”. This novel reads like amateur and juvenile fan fiction.  Vicki’s behavior doesn’t seem like it would be something a grown woman in her thirties would be acting like. She constantly mentions the sex thoughts about the men around her.  Some of the other elements in the book are just plain laughable. For example, the “club” that the bad men belong to is called the “Tie Clip Club”. That name  seems like something a child came up with, and does not jive with the adult theme of the book.

If the book didn’t include Vicki, I would have enjoyed it alot more. She was a completely useless character and I found her annoying. She and other characters kept mentioning she had body issues and anxiety but the story never did anything to address them. Instead, Vicki would just shut down around men who were mean to her. And for some odd reason, men either acted cruel to her or treated her really nicely. Those same men are the ones who make all of her decisions. It feels at times, she is just a secondary character in her own story.  While I am in no rush in reading more of the author’s books, I will say that she is skilled in creating detailed worlds. In my opinion, her main characters were not so great.

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