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38 of 41 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic read!
The Silent Land
Zoe and Jake are on a skiing holiday and survive an avalanche whilst out on the slopes. When they emerge from the snow, the resort is completely deserted....
I started reading The Silent Land just as the first thick blanket of snow fell here which felt weirdly like the story was seeping into real life! But the writing is so good that even if it...
Published on 29 Nov 2010 by Kim Slater

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Could have been so much more.
The Silent Land gets a straight up three for the premise and the premise alone.

Having thought about it, this would have been much better served as a short story. As it was there was simply too much padding throughout and pages and pages of the main characters performing the most mundane of tasks, which were in no shape or form even necessary to the plot...
Published 15 months ago by Burning Amnesia


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38 of 41 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic read!, 29 Nov 2010
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This review is from: The Silent Land (Kindle Edition)
The Silent Land
Zoe and Jake are on a skiing holiday and survive an avalanche whilst out on the slopes. When they emerge from the snow, the resort is completely deserted....
I started reading The Silent Land just as the first thick blanket of snow fell here which felt weirdly like the story was seeping into real life! But the writing is so good that even if it had been the middle of summer, the characters and story would have been alive and kicking in between reads.
I felt the narrative was unique in that it appeared to have relentless pace and tension, yet the story alternated between slow swathes of time where Zoe and Jake seemed to have all the time in the world to enjoy their surroundings to sudden key strange happenings and shifts in their environment and concepts of reality and time. Throughout it all Joyce's enviable storytelling skills somehow make it all so believable.
His language is poetic and wonderfully descriptive, such that although I have never been skiing, I could imagine perfectly the beauty and appeal of the setting. His portrayal of Zoe and Jake's love is so touching and effective, without ever becoming sentimental.
The Silent Land is above love, loss and the way we choose to live our lives. Joyce manages to touch the reader on a level where you start to think about your own life and values. The story and characters stay firmly in the reader's mind after it is finished, leaving you to interpret and mull over the gripping final scenes repeatedly. I really did not want it to get to the final page and would thoroughly recommend the book without reservation.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Stays with you, 15 July 2011
This review is from: The Silent Land (Hardcover)
Brilliant book

Quick read and a page turner but it stays with you longer than it takes to read, struggled to put it down and really makes you think, wonder, dream, imagine, think and then wonder all over again.

Don't over analyse reality nor read the reviews fully as they give it all away!
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Lovely, 3 Jun 2011
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This review is from: The Silent Land (Hardcover)
Achingly lovely book, made me ponder. I read it over a few of the hottest days this year..May 2011..but felt the cold, the iciness and the sadness. As I was reading it, I kept saying to my family, this is SUCH a good book, I am fairly hard to please but The Silent Land pleased me
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15 of 18 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A perfect supernatural Winter read, 18 Nov 2010
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I Readalot (UK) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: The Silent Land (Hardcover)
I first read 'The Silent Land' back in June as an early reading copy yet in spite of all the books I have read since this story has remained with me, the mark of a great book in my opinion. The plot is reminiscent of the series 'The Twilight Zone'; while on a skiing holiday in the Pyrenes Zoe and Jake are caught in an early morning avalance, from which it would appear that they should not have survived; but they do. Returning to the village they find it deserted, after a few days they decide to try to leave but find out they can't, however they try to leave, skiing or by car they keep ending back at the village. Are they alive, dead, or somewhere inbetween? This is the mystery they and the reader have to solve.

The title 'The Silent Land', comes from the famous poem 'Remember' by Christina Georgina Rossetti, which is quoted at the front of the novel; therefore it gives nothing away to say that this story is about death. It is also a poignant, supernatural love story, but not at all sentimental. The main, and for the most part only characters are Zoe, Jake and the beautiful snowy landscape that surrounds them and by the end of the book I felt that I really knew these people and cared about them. I can't deny that this book is sad, but it also has humour and ultimately left me with a tear in my eye and a smile on my face.

A book for anyone who really likes to get to grips with the characters and for those who like strange supernatural tales. The plot may not feel 'original' but the execution brings something new to it. A perfect Winter read, curl up by the fire with a mug of hot chocolate and enjoy.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Could have been so much more., 30 Mar 2013
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This review is from: The Silent Land (Kindle Edition)
The Silent Land gets a straight up three for the premise and the premise alone.

Having thought about it, this would have been much better served as a short story. As it was there was simply too much padding throughout and pages and pages of the main characters performing the most mundane of tasks, which were in no shape or form even necessary to the plot.

Joyce also seemed to have problems with dialogue, it was way too choppy; alternating between formal and informal with no real consistency.

There also wasn't a lot to the central characters themselves - they read like ciphers with no real personality coming through at all. In fact the only two memorable characters in the whole book were featured in flashbacks. Jake's dad story was especially moving.

However, what I really disliked about the book was the sex scenes. I'm far from a prude, but they were very awkwardly written, out of place, and felt more like an adolescent teenage boy fantasy than anything else.

Thinking about it more, The Silent Land had the same issues that I had with The Tooth Fairy; there are some wonderfully crafted scenes, complete with an sublimely eerie atmosphere - but they aren't linked together very well, or just fizzle out with no real outcome.

It also didn't help that I worked out what was actually happening very early on.

I did like it. It just could have been so very much more.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing ..., 28 Jun 2014
This review is from: The Silent Land (Paperback)
I was really disappointed in this book. The premise is good, but the book is just so badly written that if I'd tried to read it in more than one sitting then I probably would have put the book down and never picked it up again.

The main problem is with the dialogue - Joyce really can't write convincing dialogue and anything that the characters say is so stilted and cliched that it detracts from the flow of the story. His characters use really odd mid-Atlantic turns of speech that had me wondering for ages whether they were supposed to be British or American,. The dialogue is also weirdly old-fashioned - almost like someone trying to be 'cool' and failing miserably - and the novel (apart from the clunky, biologically graphic but totally un-erotic sex scenes) reads like something hastily written for the young-adult market. Another thing I hated was the language that the characters used towards each other. They're supposed to be a couple who are deeply in love but I honestly spent the first couple of chapters wondering if the novel was going to turn into a story about an abusive relationship. The tone of the dialogue is totally misjudged - what's supposed to be 'banter' between a young couple turns into something that's actually a bit disturbing.

It's frustrating as there are one or two really well-written chapters and you just feel that this story could have been so much more than it is. Parts of the sub-plot are underdeveloped and the ending could have had so much more impact than it did. All in all, a frustrating and disappointing read.
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4.0 out of 5 stars very good, 25 April 2014
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This review is from: The Silent Land (Paperback)
Love it, love it, couldn't put it down .. the only thing was that I figured out quickly what was happening and was a bit dessapointed that I didn't have the a surprise at the end.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating Mystery, 13 Feb 2014
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Red Kite (Newcastle upon Tyne) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Silent Land (Paperback)
A fascinating mystery and a brilliant read from start to finish with a surprise ending. This is my kind of book.Recommended.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Silent land, 29 Oct 2013
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This review is from: The Silent Land (Kindle Edition)
As usual, an incredible story which gripped me right from the start. What an author!!! I can't wait to read more.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Recommended read., 28 July 2013
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This review is from: The Silent Land (Kindle Edition)
Very well-written and intelligently played out. The dialogue crackles with wit and energy throughout and by the end it will leave you with a lump in your throat the size of a football. I can see why Hollywood are knocking.
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The Silent Land
The Silent Land by Graham Joyce (Hardcover - 18 Nov 2010)
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