Not a Sound by Heather Gudenkauf

Not a Sound

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 h...

Title:Not a Sound
Author:
Rating:
ISBN:0778319954
Edition Language:English
Number of Pages:320 pages

Not a Sound Reviews

  • Chelsea Humphrey

    Yay! My first thriller featuring a deaf female! I have developed a craving for more diverse characters in my mystery/thrillers and this one was pure gold. While the plot itself was fairly unique, I also found myself drawn to the careful details included surrounding the hearing impaired, and the medical field in general. I learned from the author’s note that she herself is hearing impaired, something I wasn’t aware of before, and it brought Amelia’s character to life more so than it could have fr

    Yay! My first thriller featuring a deaf female! I have developed a craving for more diverse characters in my mystery/thrillers and this one was pure gold. While the plot itself was fairly unique, I also found myself drawn to the careful details included surrounding the hearing impaired, and the medical field in general. I learned from the author’s note that she herself is hearing impaired, something I wasn’t aware of before, and it brought Amelia’s character to life more so than it could have from the voice of a writer who had never experienced such a thing. I wasn’t entirely sure what to expect from this novel as it seemed from the description to be a bit different that her previous books; it was certainly different and I applaud Heather for taking the risk as it was well worth the pay off.

    If you’ve read any of

    ’s previous novels then you know she has a knack for what I like to call “emotional suspense”. Her books manage to contain dark subject matter while maintaining an ethereal quality which makes them easily devoured in a single sitting. This is technically a whodunnit, but that isn’t the element that shines brightest in this story. The plot is fairly straight forward, and you may be able to guess who and what is behind the sinister murder of Gwen due to a small cast of characters, but I found I didn’t have it pieced together as well as expected. What caused my attention to be completely focused on this novel after failing to be grabbed by my two previous reads was Amelia’s character and the detail that went into bringing her to life. I learned so much about what a deaf person might experience, especially one who was having to adjust to being impaired instead of having been born that way. From the various tools available, to the coping mechanisms, to the medical details included from her work at the oncology clinic, these are the things that set Amelia apart from just a “girl” in just another psychological thriller.

    This was a fast paced read, and while I found some portions to be slightly repetitive of what Amelia was thinking or experiencing at the moment, I felt the writing in this book was the strongest Gudenkauf has produced and was floored. The suspense was gripping, the characters were dramatic but grounded, and the ending wasn’t cookie cutter perfect.

    In short, if you are looking for a psychological thriller to invest in this summer, I highly recommend

    . The characters are unique, the story was captivating, and the pacing was consistently quick and witty; this is the perfect story for the reader who wants a worthy distraction from everyday life.

  • Norma

    3.5 stars rounded up to 4 stars as I loved Amelia and Stitch! I am a huge fan of this author and was extremely excited and considered myself lucky to receive an advanced copy of this book!

    NOT A SOUND by HEATHER GUDENKAUF is an interesting, moving, emotional, and lightly suspenseful mystery/thriller that hooked me in right from the get go with that ever surprising and unexpected first chapter. I love it when a book grabs my attention like that right away.

    HEATHER GUDENKAUF delivers a well-written

    3.5 stars rounded up to 4 stars as I loved Amelia and Stitch! I am a huge fan of this author and was extremely excited and considered myself lucky to receive an advanced copy of this book!

    NOT A SOUND by HEATHER GUDENKAUF is an interesting, moving, emotional, and lightly suspenseful mystery/thriller that hooked me in right from the get go with that ever surprising and unexpected first chapter. I love it when a book grabs my attention like that right away.

    HEATHER GUDENKAUF delivers a well-written, fast-paced, captivating, and vivid read here told through the eyes of our main character Amelia and the ears of her loyal service dog Stitch. I was totally immersed in Amelia’s character even though she was imperfect at times she was such a powerful, unique, and strong female character with endearing and likeable traits.

    I really enjoyed the relationship between Amelia & her service dog, Stitch! I hope that we get to visit these characters again in future books!

    This wasn't necessarily a gripping page-turner and was somewhat predictable but what I loved and enjoyed were the characters, the setting, the words written and the satisfying ending. Sometimes that is all I need to make it an enjoyable read for me. Would recommend!

    Publication date: May 30, 2017

    Thank you so much to NetGalley, Heather Gudenkauf, and Harlequin / Park Row Books for the opportunity to read an advance copy of this book for a fair and honest review.

    All of Brenda & my reviews can be found on our Sister Blog:

  • Brenda

    Full review is done! Yah me!

    Heather Gudenkauf has created memorable characters here in Amelia and her service dog Stitch. I loved what their relationship brought to the story and that is what made this story an enjoyable read for me. It was very refreshing to read a story with a person/dog connection. Stitch by far was the best character in this story and I loved his attitude “I will listen when I need to” and that reminded me of my dog.

    Amelia is not your typical thriller heroine. She is the w

    Full review is done! Yah me!

    Heather Gudenkauf has created memorable characters here in Amelia and her service dog Stitch. I loved what their relationship brought to the story and that is what made this story an enjoyable read for me. It was very refreshing to read a story with a person/dog connection. Stitch by far was the best character in this story and I loved his attitude “I will listen when I need to” and that reminded me of my dog.

    Amelia is not your typical thriller heroine. She is the woman in trouble character that brings on the some trouble herself and I will admit had me a bit frustrated at times. I did find that her decisions and prying added some tension to the story and had me yelling to her in my head “why would you do that” and “what are you thinking”. It added some fun for me.

    I did think the ending was pushing it and I was not completely satisfied with it. Some will find this one predictable with not much guesswork but for me, sometimes I just don't want to think to much but just read. I recommend for others looking for a light fun thriller, that doesn't require much guesswork.

    All of Norma’s & my reviews can be found on our Sister Blog:

  • Linda

    There's plenty of bark in this one......

    Just ask Stitch, Amelia Winn's service dog, who unleashes quite the snappy-collared, digging for bone, storyline here.

    Amelia has lost her hearing due to a severe head injury. As a specially trained ER/Trauma nurse, Amelia was guiding a patient back to her car when they were both mowed down by an unknown driver who purposefully hit them in the parking lot. The driver was never caught.

    As time moved on, Amelia did not. The weight of depression began to sink A

    There's plenty of bark in this one......

    Just ask Stitch, Amelia Winn's service dog, who unleashes quite the snappy-collared, digging for bone, storyline here.

    Amelia has lost her hearing due to a severe head injury. As a specially trained ER/Trauma nurse, Amelia was guiding a patient back to her car when they were both mowed down by an unknown driver who purposefully hit them in the parking lot. The driver was never caught.

    As time moved on, Amelia did not. The weight of depression began to sink Amelia into a non-stop spiral. She reached for alcohol to numb an unreachable pain. With hand on bottle and stamina nowhere to be found, Amelia is shown the door by her husband, David, who is head of obstetrics and gynecology at the local hospital. Her marital eviction also means that she will no longer have access to her sweet six year old step-daughter.

    Reality gives Amelia a kick in the pants and a jolt of get-your-act-together shock. She finds herself with limited funds, no job, and an eye opening view of her present digs of an old A-frame fishing cabin of her father's.

    But life sometimes regenerates itself. Amelia now looks into the deep-set eyes of Stitch who knows her every move and sticks to her like a shadow in the moonlight. Stitch steals the show throughout this storyline. It is Stitch who suffered at the hands of an inhuman human in his former life. A bond is forming between these two when life delivers a disconnect.

    And then, dog and owner come upon the lifeless body of a woman found nearly submerged along the river. Shock drives Amelia to try and get help out here in the wilderness. She knows this woman. Heather Gudenkauf, who has hearing loss herself, creates scene after scene describing the challenges that Amelia faces in a world without sound.

    Gudenkauf presents her story embedded in the sobering fact that Amelia may no longer be safe in her outdoor environment. She begins a new part-time job at the Regional Cancer Center scanning files with no patient interaction. But Amelia is determined to find out what happened to her friend. Her Nancy Drew instincts will put her in unspeakable danger.

    This was a very creative approach by the author to feature our heroine living with the challenges of being deaf in a harrowing life situation. Although a bit predictable, the emphasis was more character driven in its essence. Would love to see a follow-up on Amelia and her sidekick Stitch.

  • Melissa

    If ever there was a jaw-dropping opening . . . this is it.

    lays the groundwork for her promising mystery and compelling cast of characters with a startling hit-and-run.

    Told entirely through the eyes of Amelia, a former nurse, who lost her hearing after being rundown in a parking lot, this story offers up a unique lead. She’s strong, resilient and out to prove she can get her life back on track. It was booze Amelia initially turned to after the accident, her little

    If ever there was a jaw-dropping opening . . . this is it.

    lays the groundwork for her promising mystery and compelling cast of characters with a startling hit-and-run.

    Told entirely through the eyes of Amelia, a former nurse, who lost her hearing after being rundown in a parking lot, this story offers up a unique lead. She’s strong, resilient and out to prove she can get her life back on track. It was booze Amelia initially turned to after the accident, her little family just one of the casualties of her binges, but she’s done with all that. Two years post-accident and now deaf, she’s living on her own and hell bent on showing her estranged husband, she’s worthy of time with her step-daughter.

    The author paints a vivid picture of the setting—the remote area around Fiver Mines River—that provides the much needed solace Amelia seeks. Until the morning her curious companion stumbles across a body floating along the shore, that is. Amelia gets herself caught up in some dicey situations, nosing around the investigation, inserting herself were she shouldn't, but she needs answers. Is her friend’s murder somehow connected to her unsolved hit-and-run case?

    As Amelia’s ears and extra set of eyes, Stitch, the silver-haired service dog, adds a quirky dynamic to the story. Who am I kidding,

    . A little trouble with a side of playful, I might even say he was my

    part of this entire book. Who wouldn’t want a Stitch in their life?

    The author writes in great detail, which surprisingly doesn’t drag the story down, but enhances the experience instead. I thought it lent more credibility to Amelia's character and honed in on the fact that someone who’s hearing-impaired would rely more heavily on their other senses, like sight.

    The mystery itself is interesting, although not one I would consider complex or puzzling. Around the halfway mark, the story lost some of the momentum that made the first half such a page-turner for me and veered off on a predictable path. The truth was too easy to decipher among the murky shadows of the river. There were also quite a few things about the plot itself and the relationships that just didn't add up for me. Keep in mind, this is coming from someone who indulges in mystery/suspense/thrillers on a regular basis.

    I would say, if you're in the mood for a light thriller that doesn't take a lot of guesswork, this is the book for you.

  • Bentley ★ Bookbastion.net

    __________________

    My father was born Deaf, and my entire family uses American Sign Language (ASL) to communicate with him and his friends. I was really interested in checking this book out as much for the plot as I was to see how the main character's deafness was conveyed.

    I was pleasantly surprised by the level of respect that was paid to Amelia's hearing im

    __________________

    My father was born Deaf, and my entire family uses American Sign Language (ASL) to communicate with him and his friends. I was really interested in checking this book out as much for the plot as I was to see how the main character's deafness was conveyed.

    I was pleasantly surprised by the level of respect that was paid to Amelia's hearing impairment.

    Gudenkauf avoids the emotional trauma trope that so often accompanies deafness by having the reader meet Amelia two years after her accident. By the time we join Amelia, her life is getting back on track and her deafness has become another facet of her character, and not a disability that holds her back.

    I thought it was enough that she was dragged into events at the start of the story without her control and would have enjoyed if that theme continued instead of the novice detective novel that it sort of becomes in the middle. I thought that a little too much leeway might have been taking in keeping Amelia apprised of certain information that she legally would not have been privy to.

    The suspense here is slow burning for a lot of the story as Amelia works out the truth of the situation she's become entangled in, but don't let that turn you off to it.

    In a lot of ways, I was reminded of the movie "Hush" that came out in 2016, which featured a deaf protagonist placed in a similar dangerous situation.

    There's a lot to admire here, and I really enjoyed how hearing impairment was portrayed here in a respectful way that was also very educational to readers. I'm definitely going to keep my eye out for future offerings from this author!

    ★★★★✩ =

  • Jennifer Masterson

    *Audio Version Review*

    4 Very Enjoyable Mystery Stars for "Not a Sound" by Heather Gudenkauf! I was initially going down a 3 1/2 Star path with this book because I thought I had the ending figured out, but my detective skills failed me, so I'm giving it the full 4!

    Not only did I like the main character, Amelia, but I also enjoyed the story and felt it was well written. The narrator, Julia Whelan, actually enhanced this book's experience. She's my favorite narrator and she's awesome!

    Amelia is a nu

    *Audio Version Review*

    4 Very Enjoyable Mystery Stars for "Not a Sound" by Heather Gudenkauf! I was initially going down a 3 1/2 Star path with this book because I thought I had the ending figured out, but my detective skills failed me, so I'm giving it the full 4!

    Not only did I like the main character, Amelia, but I also enjoyed the story and felt it was well written. The narrator, Julia Whelan, actually enhanced this book's experience. She's my favorite narrator and she's awesome!

    Amelia is a nurse that loses her hearing from a terrible accident. She then is no longer a nurse and her world is shattered! She turns to the bottle, loses her husband and step daughter, then she goes to live in her family's cabin with her only companion, Stitch, her service dog.

    It's two years later. She's sober but unemployed. One day Amelia comes upon a dead body while kayaking with Stitch. It turns out the body is of a fellow nurse and friend and then the book takes off. The novel does some twisting and turning and Amelia's life does, too!

    This book is very straightforward, well written and pleasant to follow. I highly recommend it to someone looking for a light Summer mystery.

    Also, if you are looking to try audio this would make the perfect first listen!

    Recommended!

  • Julie

    Not a Sound by Heather Gudenkauf is a 2017 Park Row Books publication.

    This novel delves deeper than the taut, suspenseful elements, touching upon some timely issues, while creating a sympathetic character, in Amelia Winn, that is at once vulnerable, but whose resilience is inspiring.

    Amelia Winn is an RN, happily married, with a step daughter she adores, when her life changes on a dime. She is left profoundly deaf after a horrific car crash. Her equilibrium is knocked out of whack in more ways t

    Not a Sound by Heather Gudenkauf is a 2017 Park Row Books publication.

    This novel delves deeper than the taut, suspenseful elements, touching upon some timely issues, while creating a sympathetic character, in Amelia Winn, that is at once vulnerable, but whose resilience is inspiring.

    Amelia Winn is an RN, happily married, with a step daughter she adores, when her life changes on a dime. She is left profoundly deaf after a horrific car crash. Her equilibrium is knocked out of whack in more ways than one, and she turns to alcohol to cope, which causes her marriage to end.

    Now, she is slowly fighting her way back, looking for work, and trying to be a mom to her beloved step daughter, with the help of her good friend, Jake, and ‘Stitch’, her therapy dog. Yet, just before a promising job interview, Amelia discovers the body of a woman she was once friends with, and her life once more spirals into dangerous territory.

    The story got off to a deceptively slow start, but the isolated atmosphere was perfect for eliciting a few spine tingles, setting the stage for some tense, nerve wracking suspense.

    It is hard enough to find oneself in imminent danger, but it’s doubly hard when you are handicapped in some way. Amelia’s deafness puts her in a perilous situation, when she begins to dig into the circumstances of her friend’s death, and someone isn’t pleased about it.

    While this approach has shown up in books, television, and movies, it never fails to make me nervous, making my palms sweat. The final showdown nearly gave me a heart attack, but on a more serious note, the author delved into some uncomfortable topics, such as cancer, and the dangerous temptations, some healthcare providers may entertain, which should send even more chills down your spine.

    The downside is a certain amount of predictability since I think seasoned readers will have the ‘who’ part figured out, although that really doesn’t have much of an effect on the suspense levels, in my opinion. However, there were some implausible moments, here and there, and the wrap up was too brisk, with some issues hurriedly glossed over.

    On the plus side, Stitch is a real hero, and I love it when a book showcases the work these specially trained dogs do for humans.

    Overall, this is a very suspenseful, thought provoking psychological thriller.

    4 stars

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