Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Book Review: "Silence and Circumstance" (Roy Dimond)

December 1926. The second World War brews in the not-so-distant future, threatening to wipe out all semblance of independent thought and imagination. And a motley assortment of artists, intellectuals, authors, and other like-minded individuals stand in the gap between the total annihilation of the crucial importance of words and thoughts to culture, and the preservation of the same.

When one of the leading intellectuals --- none other than famed mystery writer Agatha Christie herself --- vanishes, the others, including Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, John Steinbeck, Ernest Hemingway, Dorothy Sayers, and many others, fear foul play and leap immediately to solve her disappearance before it's too late.

The mystery novel Silence and Circumstance by Roy Dimond is a remarkable work of historical fiction based in fact and peopled with an unbelievably diverse cast of (for the most part) actual historical figures, such as the aforementioned, along with D.H. Lawrence, C.S. Lewis, J.R.R. Tolkien, Ian Fleming, and more.

The work is largely narrated in the first-person perspective of Agatha Christie's daughter Rosalind's governess, Charlotte Fisher, who finds herself unwittingly involved when a confidential errand for her employer turns into an adventure that spans eleven days of that same employer having gone missing entirely. Others of the more prominent intellectuals feature as perspective characters periodically throughout.

The amount of research that under-girds the mysterious goings-on in the novel is staggering, and author Dimond is to be commended for such substance and authenticity in rendering the historical characters who make up his work. Every so often, there is an occasional line of dialogue, internal thought, or descriptor that doesn't really seem to belong, accurately, in the year 1926, but for the most part, the setting is richly devised.

Perhaps the most compelling aspect of the mystery, however, is in the incredible cast of characters, each with his or her own respective quirks, preferences, beliefs, and contributions to the forward momentum of the story. Widely read readers will recognize without hesitation the real-life authors and artists of some of their most beloved novels and paintings, in particular, though scientists and other intellectuals also feature as a matter of course.

Unique, unexpected, suspenseful, Silence and Circumstance will delight those who love historical fiction, mysteries, other cultures, and timeless works of art.

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Author: Roy Dimond
Title: Silence and Circumstance
Purchase here: http://amzn.to/1HM20PF

Disclaimer: I received a complimentary copy of this work from the author in exchange for an honest, though not necessarily positive, review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

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