The Silent Corner by Dean Koontz
‘I very much need to be dead’
These are the chilling words left by a man who had everything to live for but took his own life. Now his widow, FBI agent Jane Hawk, is determined to learn the truth, no matter what.
People of talent, seemingly happy and sound of mind, have recently been committing suicide in surprising numbers. Jane will give up everything to find out why.
Her enemies are devoted enough to exterminate anyone in their way. But Jane is driven by a righteous rage they can never comprehend. Because it is born of love.
This novel is absolutely AMAZING! I was completely absorbed in the plot and when I reached the end, was so glad I had already bought the next in the series! The novel centres around protagonist Jane Hawk. She is feisty, strong and seeking revenge! I loved her character, almost instantly and as she developed throughout the story even more! Most definitely a #FanGirl of Jane Hawk! There are a wealth of intriguing and also some frightening characters. Not to mention the clever, deeply layered plot!
This novel is action packed and EPIC!
The novel opens with the major news story of a plane crash in Philadelphia. Jane is seemingly living off the grid, but we are unaware as to why. She meets with Gwyneth Lambert, a fellow marine wife and now widow. They share the stories of their husband’s suicides and each is left baffled as to why it happened? There were no signs, no depression and no logical reasoning for the men to have committed suicide.
We then learn the extra bit of depth behind Jane’s character. She is an FBI agent, specialising in mass murders and serial killers. She is currently on a leave of absence, due to the death of her, very much loved and missed husband Nick, four months ago. Nick was a Colonel in the US military, his suicide occurred one night as they prepared for their evening meal. Nick left a bizarre note, which left Jane with more suspicions…….
‘Something is wrong with me. I need. I very much need. I very much need to be dead.’
This note led Jane to begin to investigate the rise in the US suicide rate. It is currently higher than it has ever been. But why? What is causing US citizens to suddenly commit suicide on a mass scale? She investigates symptoms the people displayed prior to death. Such as vertigo, strange intense dreams, tremors of mouth and a biter taste. The symptoms vary person to person, but Jane is determined to find a link.
So far, Jane has interviewed and investigated 22 deaths. The people used various methods gun shot, drug overdose and hanging etc. Jane begins to believe there is a link possible via a cerebral implant. The type paraplegic’s use to operate prosthetic limbs. Her research leads her to the Gernsback Institute and some elite individuals. With no FBI resources to use, due to her fear of government involvement or links to government officials. She has to navigate a world of criminality. A world she knows well, from an apprehension perspective.
‘Not all cops were on the side of the righteous’
Jane moves on and interviews Sidney, his wife Eileen (Leenie) hung herself. Jane learns Eileen also left a riddle like, suicide note and that she needs help to decipher what these notes mean…
“Sweet Sayso says he’s lonely all these years, why did leenie stope needing him, he was always there for Leenie, now I need to be there for him” – Eileen’s note
She decides to take the notes to Dr Moshe Steintz, a retired forensic psychiatrist. But not before she makes a special trip…..
Her trip involves a visit to see her son Travis. A son Jane has had to hide. Travis is 5yr old and unaware of his mother’s investigation. It is during this visit that the reader learns the horrifying truth, of why Travis lives in hiding. The sinister Mr Droog, the threats to Jane, her son and why she must adapt an off the grid lifestyle! It makes for shocking reading!!!!!! As a mother the separation from her son, is heart-breaking to read. I admired her courage and determination for justice.
‘She had nothing to live for now except vengeance and this precious boy. She would revel in the vengeance, but if she died for either cause, the only good death would be to die for him’
Whoever is after Jane has clear connections and extreme wealth. She is a lone woman, trying to investigate an epidemic that has swept the US. One thing is for certain Jane, needs some help!
Moshe is able to provide an insight into the copies of the suicide notes. They debate a range of theories. Can dreams be programmed? Is this a case of hypnotism? Moshe continues to state that each individual referred to an ‘altered state of mind’ that perhaps some truth lies in their psychology. But gives a stark warning to Jane….
“A person driven by obsession may not have the patience, the prudence, or even the fullest clarity of mind to investigate such a byzantine conspiracy with any success” – Moshe
Jane’s past career and cases are interwoven into her experiences living off the grid. We learn how her training has led her to be prepared for this investigation. She can read a situation/scene with the mind of a profiler. She has the physical training necessary to overcome adversaries. But mentally she is unprepared for the darkness this investigation will bring into her own life. The darkness she will witness first hand and the evil that roams amongst us!
Jane’s use of a hacker, enables her to access the coroner reports. It also gives her untraced access to some of the wealthy elite with links to the case. Then one route of investigation leads to a sentence that changes everything ‘Bertold Shenneck appears to have a deeply concealed interest in a dark web operation that may or may not be a weird brothel’. The dark website is called Aspasia. But what does it mean? Where is the physical location? What takes place there? How is this linked to the possibility of a psychological control?
Although I have provided quite a lengthy review. Believe me, I have barely scraped the surface! This novel is so deeply layered and cleverly put together, it is pure genius!
It kept me gripped for the entire read! It is action packed, with some highly memorable scenes. Some are truly frightening! It kept me guessing, as to where each lead would go!
It is based around a conspiracy theory, but it is so detailed and intricate. I am amazed at the skill of the writer! I already have the next the series, The Whispering Room and CANNOT wait to read how this story develops further!