Title: Not a Sound by Heather Gudenkauf
Publisher: Park Row Books
Genre: Contemporary, Mystery, Suspense
Length: 352 pages
Book Rating: B+
Complimentary Review Copy Provided by Publisher Through NetGalley
A shocking discovery and chilling secrets converge in this latest novel from New York Times bestselling author Heather Gudenkauf
When a tragic accident leaves nurse Amelia Winn deaf, she spirals into a depression that ultimately causes her to lose everything that matters—her job, her husband, David, and her stepdaughter, Nora. Now, two years later and with the help of her hearing dog, Stitch, she is finally getting back on her feet. But when she discovers the body of a fellow nurse in the dense bush by the river, deep in the woods near her cabin, she is plunged into a disturbing mystery that could shatter the carefully reconstructed pieces of her life all over again.
As clues begin to surface, Amelia finds herself swept into an investigation that hits all too close to home. But how much is she willing to risk in order to uncover the truth and bring a killer to justice?
New York Times bestselling author Heather Gudenkauf has been described as “masterful” and “intelligent” and compared to Lisa Scottoline and Jodi Picoult. Introducing her most compelling heroine yet, she delivers a taut and emotional thriller that proves she’s at the top of her class.
Not a Sound by Heather Gudenkauf is a spellbinding mystery that is fast-paced and suspense-laden.
Two years after the hit and run accident that left her deaf, Amelia Winn is finally beginning to get her life back on track. Now a recovering alcoholic, she is separated from her husband Dr. David Winn and living in her family’s isolated cabin near the river where she spends time kayaking or paddleboarding with her service dog, Stitch. On the day she is planning to go to her first job interview since losing her hearing, Amelia is stunned to discover the lifeless body of her former friend and fellow nurse, Gwen Locke, floating in the river. Amelia’s suspicion that Gwen’s death was no accident is quickly confirmed by her lifelong friend Detective Jake Schroeder. After she begins her new job working in a cancer treatment clinic for David’s colleague, Dr. Joseph Huntley, she quickly settles into her new routine. However, Amelia is quite troubled about Gwen’s murder and despite Jake’s pleas to stay out the investigation, she soon uncovers very disturbing information that might explain the murderer’s motive for silencing her friend. Unsettled by her mounting suspicions, Amelia takes a huge risk that puts her in the crosshairs of a ruthless killer.
Before the accident, Amelia had everything: a satisfying and fulfilling job, a happy marriage and a fantastic relationship with her stepdaughter Nora. After the accident, she pushes away all of her friends as she turns to alcohol to help cope with all of the changes in her life. After David forces her to leave their home, Jake is instrumental in getting her help for her drinking and convincing her to utilize the resources available for her deafness. Amelia is dedicated to her sobriety and she is working very hard to prove herself to David so she can maintain her relationship with Nora.
After discovering Gwen’s body, Amelia is wracked with guilt for pushing her friend away and not responding to her efforts to resume their friendship. Although she knows she is taking a huge risk, she cannot stop searching for answers that will explain why someone would want to kill Gwen. When strange things begin occurring, Amelia thinks she knows who is responsible, but she cannot think of a reason why this person would do this to her. Pushing her suspicions to the back of her mind, Amelia continues digging into Gwen’s life and she soon uncovers shocking information that provides her with the motive for the murder. Discovering why Gwen was murdered also leads Amelia to a stunning conclusion about who killed her but will she find irrefutable proof before it is too late?
Not a Sound is an exceedingly well written whodunit that is full of unexpected twists and turns. Amelia is a wonderful protagonist and it is very easy to root for her as she works hard to maintain her sobriety while trying to pick up the pieces of her life. She is truly regretful for letting her friendship with Gwen lapse and the resulting guilt and remorse provide the impetus for her investigation. The killer’s identity and motive for the murder are brilliantly concealed through a series of clever misdirects and red herrings. Heather Gudenkauf brings the novel to an adrenaline fueled and action packed conclusion.