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THE SILENT FOUNTAIN: A Mystery Novel ~Victoria Fox

Monday, November 6th, 2017

THE SILENT FOUNTAIN tells its tale during two time periods and surrounding one main character through the unraveling of secrets to come to the final resolution of all the mysteries.   There is a darkness to the story.

Hollywood, 1978
Tragedy sends troubled film star Vivien Lockhart into the arms of Giovanni Moretti—and it seems her fortunes have finally changed. Until she meets his sister and learns that her new husband’s past holds dark secrets…

Tuscany, Present day
Lucy Whittaker needs to disappear. But her new home, the crumbling Castillo Barbarossa, is far from the secluded paradise it seemed. Strange sounds come from the attic. The owner of the house will never meet her in person.

The fountain in the courtyard is silent—but has never run dry. Across the decades, Vivien and Lucy find themselves trapped in the idyllic Italian villa. And if they are ever to truly escape its walls, they must first unearth its secrets…

Each of the two women’s stories begins with confusion about what is happening in their lives and how this problem came into being.   The reader then needs to read the interspersed backstories to finally figure out how the tragedies of their lives were played out into the contemporary situation.  They each had tough lives and hard luck experiences to get them to their current contact with each other.  The reader learns a lot about love, abuse and death to work up to the ending release and the complete overview of the story and the resolutions.

Most of my book group loves this kind of wound up formal mystery, but we have 2 members who will not read them after the first 25 pages if the confusion remains.  So this book will not be for everyone.   I had much of the story figured out and found reading the Hollywood sections of the story as though it was a segment on The Carol Burnett Show gave me more interest in the read.   There is a lot of darkness in the story and mental illness is exposed and exploited in the plot.

The story is almost more a puzzle to be pieced together and explored as to which piece fits where to bring together the whole.  There is not a great deal of great Italian Cooking in the novel either nor is the countryside expounded upon.  There is intensity.

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Victoria Fox is a bestselling author in the UK. She used to work in publishing and is now the author of six novels. The Silent Fountain is her breakout novel in North America. She divides her time between Bristol and London.

Related:
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The Gods of Heavenly Punishment

13 HOLLYWOOD APES: A Layla Remington Novel ~Gil Reavill

Monday, December 22nd, 2014

“You see? We treat people like they’re nothing, like they might as well be inanimate rocks.  But when we open up our hearts we see them as fellow creatures, then as humans, and finally as friends.” (Location 1812)

Putting on the Top Hat and wrapping myself around a lot of old movies and actors in my archives division, I curled up to see what was going on in Los Angeles in 13 HOLLYWOOD APES; I found it stylish, interesting and loaded with some meaty issues to keep my mind questioning and problem-solving.  The reader finds the first pages full of chimpanzees being shot in a sanctuary during a raging hillside fire and the first question arises; was it a mercy killer or was it murder?

Layla Remington is a detective investigator for the police substation in Malibu.  The daughter of a police officer and a person who worked her way up the ladder to her current job,  Layla has a wealth of old movies in her mental archives and a father who likes to watch them even now.   She grabs onto each question which arises and digs deeply into figuring out the answer and solving the next problem. Remington perseveres even when her superiors are running in other directions.  When she discovers the 13 HOLLYWOOD APES were movie stars and abused lab animals which were given this sanctuary for their whole lives, she becomes extremely glued to the case and figuring out the answers.  The reader journeys with Remington and may even figure the plot early on, and yet the twists are tricky making the reader want to help Layla while being well characterized, some by well-placed snippets and clues.    The pacing of the story was just right for my need to enjoy this escape.

The theme of the story I found truly captivating.  I realized I did not have an answer as to what I deeply believed about animal rights.  Are they individuals with rights, just property, slaves and what is cruel and unusual behavior towards them?   While reading this story, I read an article about a beloved dog which is healthy and fairly young being held in a shelter until it can be decided whether or not the dog should be euthanized and buried with it’s deceased owner according to the designated will or does the dog have rights to a new life contrary to the original owner’s wishes?  The courts are being challenged to decide this dog’s fate. The courts and lawyers are being challenged in 13 HOLLYWOOD APES.

I would recommend this book to those who like thrillers and I would caution this book for younger readers who are not versed in animal rights, neo-Nazi style protesters, and racist insinuations.  A smart read and I enjoyed the new information shared and thinking about animal rights from various perspectives.

TLC Booktours sent me an Uncorrected Proof ecopy of this book and I appreciated the read and style of the book very much.  Thank you for the opportunity.

About the Author:

Gil Reavill is an author, screenwriter, and widely featured in magazines, Reavill is the author of Aftermath, Inc.: Cleaning Up After CSI Goes Home,  and the co-author of Beyond All Reason: My Life with Susan Smith and the screenplay that became the 2005 film Dirty, starring Cuba Gooding, Jr.  He lives in Westchester County, New York, with his wife, Jean Zimmerman, and their daughter.  (From the ebook cover).

Gil Reavill LinkedIn
Gil Reavill Webpage 

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