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Silence: A Viennese Mystery Hardcover – December 1, 2011

4.4 out of 5 stars 10 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"Jones vividly evokes 1900 Vienna ... in his splendid third whodunit featuring attorney Karl Werthen and criminologist Hanns Gross." -Publishers Weekly (starred review)

"[Jones uses] mystery fiction to resurrect beautiful, historic Vienna."- Kirkus Reviews "10 Thrillers to Watch for This Fall" list

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Product Details

  • Series: A Viennese Mystery (Book 3)
  • Hardcover: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Severn House Publishers (December 1, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0727880845
  • ISBN-13: 978-0727880840
  • Product Dimensions: 8.6 x 5.7 x 1.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.5 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,217,951 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Barbara J. Mitchell VINE VOICE on October 23, 2011
Format: Hardcover
I'm delighted that J. Sydney Jones sent a PDF of this book to me for review. It is the third in a series of mystery novels set in historic Vienna, a city Jones lived in for some time years ago. The fact that I hadn't read the first two was no barrier to enjoyment of this one, but certainly convinced me that I must read the others very soon. They are, in order: The Empty Mirror and Requiem in Vienna, both published last year. I should add that these are print books with gorgeous covers appropriate to the setting.

Attorney and private inquiries agent (private detective) Karl Werthen is the protagonist but by no means alone in his investigations. His wife Berthe is one of my favorite characters, so level-headed, patient, and fully invested in each case. She gives him fresh eyes and good ideas. Another partner in solving the crime is a real person, Dr. Hanns Gross who was the father of criminology. He is gruff and abrupt with people but has a better grasp of the issues than anyone else.

In addition to his case, Werthen is beset by family squabbles involving his orthodox father-in-law, and his snobbish parents who apparently don't credit Werthen and his wife with the good sense to take care of their baby daughter, the apple of Werthen's eye. Leave it to the grandparents to muddy the waters when the first grandchild is born.

Werthen is at first hired to find a wealthy family's oldest son. As he goes to their mansion we learn one of the many things about 1900 Vienna that make this book so charming and interesting to read. The wife has a migraine, so city workers have been dispatched to spread straw on the street to muffle the sound of horses' hooves. There are descriptions of homes, the architecture of city buildings, the sounds and smells of the city, and the Vienna Woods.
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Format: Hardcover
I first stumbled across J. Sydney Jones a few years ago and eagerly read his first two Karl Werthen works, "The Empty Mirror" and "Requiem in Vienna". I was pleasantly surprised to discover that a third installment in the series has been written (with #4 due out on June 1 of this year) and snatched it up during a recent trip to the local library. Though it has been nearly three years since I was last in his world, I quickly found myself drifting back to early 1900s Vienna and the world of Karl Werthen.

Married with a young child, Karl Werthen is a lawyer who doubles as an investigator. When an old client, Gustav Klimt, recommends a new case for Werthen to work on, he eagerly takes it on; a wealthy businessman's son has disappeared. Karl is quickly able to ascertain the son's whereabouts, but this seemingly easy case quickly embroils him in a deeper mystery involving two recent "suicides", the world of underhand politics, and double-dealing that may put his young family in danger. With the help of his old friend, Hanns Gross, Karl is determined to get to the bottom of what is going on, even if it results in the death of someone he holds dear.

It's easy to compare this series to Frank Tallis' Max Liebermann series; after all, the two both take place at the same time period in the city of Vienna. Where Tallis focuses on the use of psychology, featuring Sigmund Freud as a secondary character, Jones has chosen to focus on the real-life Hanns Gross as the "sidekick" to his protagonist. Both series are fabulous, and this book held me captive until the last page. I can't wait to read the next one!
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I loved it . This is the the third Viennese mystery I have read. I love iit because the characters are real people except for Werthen and Gross and the places in Vienna are real too. I can picture the locales in town and the country side. A delightful read !!
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is another top flight journey back into the lost world of fin-de-siecle Vienna. Jones has tossed in red herrings and false leads enough to make it a real whodunnit, all the while giving us another painless history lesson in introducing us to personages less well known such as the fascinating Wittgenstein family, the Austrian equivalent of the Rothschilds or Rockefellers; the popular, yet anti-Semitic, mayor of Vienna, Karl Lueger, who forms a surprising plot against the monarchy; and the acerbic journalist, Karl Kraus, the man who knew all the secrets of Viennese society. Throw in Gustav Klimt, Otto Wagner, and Viktor Adler. All and more are brought into the story in a believable manner. All these combine to paint a portrait of a time of emperors, of radical changes in art and thought, yet still these are people with motives that are as contemporary as any of today's political scandals. A good read that should leave readers wanting to do their own further research into this long gone era.
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Format: Kindle Edition
I am shocked that only 7 people have reviewed this book, and not all are praising it to the sky. I discovered this author's newest book in my library, and then went into the stacks and started from the beginning. So I have read 3 and now am on the fourth book, 3rd in the series. Each of them is a gem. For context: I have read and re-read all of Sherlock Holmes, including the newer take-offs and comedic extensions and everything else I can find. I read and watched all of The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo, and I am current with the Harry Hole series, immersed in the newest audiobook even as I read The Silence. J. Sydney Jones is a cultured, intellectual, great writer. The stories are pure joy. The writing is delicious. I highly recommend all of this series to anyone who appreciates travel, culture, architecture, history, intrigue, European food, period writing, good solid characters, inventive situations, etc. AND... a new and different Sherlock/Watson-type companionship; that is enjoyable and funny and interesting.
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