>> Tuesday, July 20, 2010
Pray for Silence by Linda Castillo
Series: #2 in the Kate Burkholder series
Publication Date: 2010
Challenges: Support Your Local Library #29
The Short Version:
Kate Burkholder grew up Amish and is now the police chief in her home town who is leading the investigation into the brutal killings of all seven members of a local Amish family.
Why I Read It:
I’ve been on the lookout for Castillo’s second Kate Burkolder book ever since I read her first one (Sworn to Silence). It was interesting crime fiction with troubled protagonists in an interesting setting and I wanted more of the story.
When all seven members of the Plank family are found brutally murdered at their farm in Painter’s Mill, Ohio, it’s a shocking crime. The murders themselves are gruesome and with the victims being an Amish family it’s an investigation that will involve both the Amish and English communities in the town.
Police Chief Kate Burkholder grew up in an Amish family in Painter’s mill which gives her both an advantage and disadvantage in dealing with local Amish families. Kate and her small police force investigate a brutal crime with little evidence and few leads and are soon frustrated with the lack of clues as to the motive. State investigator John Tomasetti joins the investigation team. He and Kate have worked together before and have since developed a personal relationship that is as rocky as the emotional states of both John and Kate. They both find themselves haunted by their pasts in the course of finding out who killed the Plank family and why.
As in the first book in the series, this is partly about the crime and the investigation and partly about Kate and John and their relationship. They are both deeply troubled individuals who may be good at jointly investigating a crime, but whether or not they are as good together as they are professionally is yet to be seen.
Once again the search for the killer leads the police to both the Amish and English communities in town. When they discover an important piece of evidence connected to the younger of the Plank’s teenage girls the case takes even more disturbing turns. It’s not a book for the faint of heart with some pretty gory scenes and troubling revelations.
I like the troubled protagonist aspect well enough with both John and Kate, but some of it is more of the same from the first book. It's a good police procedural and nice to get that in something other than a big city setting. I’ll be watching for more of this series, but I’m hoping for more development of the main characters and I’m wondering how many horrifying crimes the small town locale of Painter’s Mill can hold.