Review: Silent Saturday by Helen Grant

Posted July 3, 2013 by chooseyabooks in britishbookschallenge, reviews / 1 Comment

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Silent Saturday was a book introduced at the Spring RHCP Blogger Brunch and I was really happy to receive a copy for review shortly after attending (and I’d like to say sorry to the people at Random House especially Lisa for this review being so late). As some of you know, I love YA crime novels and I’d never read anything set in Belgium before that I could remember.

Silent Saturday tells the story of Veerle. Years ago she and a local boy Kris saw something terrifying, a murder, from a tower on Silent Saturday, a festival where the bells stop ringing I believe, something Veerle has actually forced herself to forget about. Years later their paths interweave again and soon she is drawn into his secretive hobby; trespassing empty buildings (where the deal is you do something good to help the building in some way, whether it’s fix a squeaky door, or if it’s an occupied house alphabetise their DVDs) and her feelings toward him become more complicated. However, as a series of murders appear it seems the group may be involved and that it may even be impossibly linked to what Veerle and Kris saw as a child.

I loved that I never knew if there would be a supernatural twist or it would stay within the psychological thriller tone as I read. I was really invested in the plot and finding out exactly what was happening and who was behind everything. I think Veerle in particular really developed from the beginning of the book and it was a journey I couldn’t help but be swept into and that stood out despite the foreboding disease of the Hunter plot.

One of the most interesting parts of the novel for me was the relationship between Veerle and her mum, who was always saying she was ill or wanting Veerle to stay in with her and not see friends. This is something I haven’t seen so much in young adult fiction and Veerle’s dilemma here and strained relationship with her mother was very well evoked and emotive.

Filled with twists, turns and a large helping of psychological horror, Silent Saturday is ideal for fans of thrillers and YA alike. It’s one I would definitely recommend to a reader wanting something that will keep them turning the pages and who loves a tense, somewhat scary and exciting plot that is well-crafted.

Silent Saturday is the first in a trilogy and I’m really intrigued to see where Grant will take her characters next. I’d never read any of her books before, but now I’m definitely keeping an eye out for her work. Silent Saturday is out now. I received a free review copy from Random House, which as ever does not affect the tone or honesty of my review in any way, shape or form.

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