“The Silent Hour: A Lincoln Perry Mystery” opens with Private Investigator Lincoln Perry working solo while his partner Joe Pritchard mends in Florida. Perry is receiving letters from Parker Harrison, convicted murder, who is seeking his help. When the letter campaign doesn’t work, Harrison comes in person. Simplifying greatly, Harrison wants Perry to find the woman who owned the home “Whisper Ridge” where Parker Harrison first stayed on his release from prison. The home was unique as were its owners, Alexandra and Joshua Cantrell. She disappeared along with her husband, twelve years ago, and Harrison wants her found for a variety of reasons.


Harrison wants an ending to the story. He says he wants to know what happened to her. He claims there wasn’t a romantic interest and yet, it comes across to Perry that something was going on between the two. Along with being able to get under Perry’s skin and push his buttons, Harrison has the ability not to tell all while saying he is telling all. He manages to pull Perry into the case, one agonizing step at a time, and once he is in, not let go for anything.


While the book jacket states that, “… Michal Koryta has crafted an intricate, lightning paced thriller, ratcheting up the tension as he explores just how dangerous the offer of a second chance can be.” I would disagree. Intricate—it certainly is. Thriller — it isn’t. Nor would I agree with the idea that the book has a lightning pace. Instead, this slow moving mystery novel is primarily a psychological character study of Lincoln Perry.  As befitting fitting a fourth book of a series, usually a major turning point for the primary character, Perry is at a major crossroads. Guilt and fear have rightfully so become increasing burdens and Perry spends much of this book in contemplation regarding the human costs of his actions. Such mental gymnastics heightens the tension considerably and strengthens the complexity while also making it very important for readers to have read this series in order starting with the Edgar nominated first novel, “Tonight I Said Goodbye.”


Such mental contemplation of the past does noting to make the novel either a thriller or lightning paced. The fact that the jacket copy is so obviously incorrect does nothing to disprove the notion that this is a very good book. As long time readers know, Michal Kortya writes complex novels full of deep storylines, action, and intricate plots that create storylines that carry over from book to book. “the Silent Hour: A Lincoln Perry Mystery” is yet more proof that if you aren’t reading this author, you are missing one of the big names these days and for some time to come.


The Silent Hour: A Lincoln Perry Mystery

Michael Kortya


Minotaur Books (St. Martin’s Publishing Group)


August 2009

ISBN# 0-312-36157-0


311 Pages



Material received from the good folks of the Plano, Texas Public Library System.


Kevin R. Tipple © 2009


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