The Silent Girl, by Tess Gerritson

4.5 stars4.5/5

I have been a fan of Tess Gerritson’s Rizzoli and Isles books since my boyfriend bought me a copy of The Surgeon a good few years ago.

Bantam Press, 2011 hardback edition, 336 pages - gift

It had me hooked from the first page to the last. I enjoyed it so much that I practically forced Savidge Reads to read it although it was possibly in bad taste that I bought it for him just before a stay in hospital!

Perhaps it really is true that what goes around, comes around though, because last week this rather splendid copy dropped through my letterbox – a gift from said friend and fellow Gerritson fan.

And look! He even got it signed by the author herself when he met her recently!

With life being a little bit hectic as of late, I fancied reading something that would really keep me gripped and The Silent Girl was just the ticket.

The story begins with the discovery of a woman, found brutally murdered in Boston’s Chinatown with her hand sliced clean-off. Detectives Rizzoli and Frost become suspicious that an old case, previously concluded to be a mass-murder suicide is not what it seems and re-open it, but seem to find only more questions they can’t answer easily. Even more intriguing is the character of Iris Fang, a Wushu martial arts teacher who lost her husband in the massacre and then suffered a double tragedy when her daughter was abducted. Could she be connected to the murder somehow?

I raced through The Silent Girl. Although I was hooked from the beginning, what I really liked was the way that the story evolved, becoming ever more complex without actually confusing me. I felt as if I started in one place and ended up somewhere quite different.

I love the way that Gerritson has woven Chinese folklore into the plot. It adds a deeper layer of mystery and suspense. In her author’s note, Gerritson says that this is one of the most personal novels that she has written because of her Chinese-American background and I can really tell that she enjoyed developing the mythical elements of the story.

Gerritson’s tightly plotted crime novel, laced with Chinese folklore has reminded me that I want to:

  1. Read all the Rizzoli and Isles thrillers
  2. Find out when the American TV series is coming over to the UK
  3. Dig out my set of Wu Cheng’en’s Journey to the West / Monkey and read them for myself

Has anyone seen the TV adaptation of the Rizzoli & Isles series? Has anyone read Journey to the West or can recommend other Chinese legends?

8 responses to “The Silent Girl, by Tess Gerritson

  1. I’m reading this book right now, Polly! I am about 2/3 of the way through and loving it just as much as all her previous books (I read the first 8 in the series back to back earlier this year – something I have never done before – because I couldn’t bear to leave them and it’s so good to be back in Rizzoli & Isles’ company).

    I have Wu Cheng’en’s books on my TBR list too as I am a big fan of reading about China.

  2. I’m humming and ha-ing about whether I should start from the beginning and read the ones I’ve already read or not. Decisions, decisions!

  3. I was just thinking I really needed to get my hands on the Rizzoli & Isles series after reading Boof’s recommendations on her blog and above:) But I think I’d like to start at the beginning. It’s really good to see you both enjoying the books. I’ve seen one episode of the TV series which I really enjoyed but I don’t think it’s out here yet.

    I’ve also seen the really old Japanese tv series of Monkey when I was a kid but haven’t read the book.

  4. I decided to start from the beginning and read The Surgeon last month, definitely going to read this series in order, I can’t wait to catch up.

    You gave him the book before a hospital visit, :-0 omg, cruel cruel cruel, lol

    • Haha I know. I guess at the time I just didn’t think it through! Will be interested to hear what you think of the books!

  5. I’ve never read the series but I enjoy the TV adaptation.

  6. Like you if I want to have an unputdownable read then Tess Gerritsen it the one!

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