by Kelsey Sutton
Read: September 23 - 25
Published: July 8th 2013 by Flux
Category: PNR, Horror elements, YA
Find: Goodreads | Amazon
Elizabeth Caldwell doesn’t feel emotions . . . she sees them. Longing, Shame, and Courage materialize around her classmates. Fury and Resentment appear in her dysfunctional home. They’ve all given up on Elizabeth because she doesn’t succumb to their touch. All, that is, save one—Fear. He’s intrigued by her, as desperate to understand the accident that changed Elizabeth’s life as she is herself.
Elizabeth and Fear both sense that the key to her past is hidden in the dream paintings she hides in the family barn. But a shadowy menace has begun to stalk her, and try as she might, Elizabeth can barely avoid the brutality of her life long enough to uncover the truth about herself. When it matters most, will she be able to rely on Fear to save her?
Elizabeth Caldwell is a high school girl living on a farm with her family in the Midwest. But nothing is as simple as that. Elizabeth lives in a world where Emotions and Elements have literal personifications. Maybe it's our world too, because she is the only one who can actually see them. Although Elizabeth knows what Anger, Guilt and Courage look like, she can't feel any emotions. They don't affect her at all. In an effort to hide her emptiness, Elizabeth carefully fakes appropriate reactions around her family and at school. But they all know something is different about her anyway. Elizabeth doesn't have any idea why she is like this, but she thinks it has something to do with strange dreams she keeps having.
Fear is fascinated by Elizabeth, and determined to get a reaction of her. So he visits, bringing illusions of terror that would have the strongest among us begging for mercy. But nothing works. I really loved the imagery in this book, especially when Fear visits. We are able to experience Elizabeth's lack of emotions in a nearly tangible way. I could sense the absence through her. She faces truly horrifying situations in this book - some from her real life and some Fear's illusions - and instead of being scared or angry or sad, Elizabeth thinks clinically about what the most appropriate reaction should be in that moment and executes it accordingly. There's something eerie about the wrongness of how she responds, which sets a great tone for in the book.
In Some Quiet Place, Elizabeth works to discover why she is the way she is. I think the author did a great job of slowly unraveling the mystery surrounding Elizabeth. Information comes out at a good pace and there are many pieces that surprised me along the way. This book is pretty scary in parts, and turns up the horror notch as well. But it also contains some raw and powerful emotions, which may be surprising since Elizabeth cannot feel.
Despite everything that I enjoyed about this book, I had issues with a few elements. The first is the presence of a love triangle. Although I understood it to a degree - with Elizabeth lacking emotions, it is hard to for her to figure out what she actually feels about others (or what she would feel if she possessed emotions). I didn't think it needed to go on so long, and I didn't fully buy the justification for it in the latter part of the book. However, I still didn't feel overly threatened by the triangle. Thankfully, it didn't quite make it to the "I love you, but I love him more," status that is the kiss of death for me.
I also had a big problem with Elizabeth's school nemesis Sophie, aka "The Mean Girl." She was so over the top that her behavior irritated me more and more the further into the book I read. Even with her background, I couldn't believe her actions.
Some Quiet Place has a strong beginning and possesses fantastic imagery all the way through, but it began to follow more of the standard Paranormal Romance plot elements as it progressed into the second half. This made the book less interesting in my opinion. I will admit that part of this transition for me has to do with the triangle. I also felt like some things got drawn out unnecessarily near the end. However, as a whole I enjoyed Some Quiet Place and I am interested in the sequel.
Love Triangle Factor: Mild that felt medium at times
Cliffhanger Scale: Low. Part of a series, but book 2 may be a companion?
Book 2 is called Where Silence Gathers and it will be published July 0f 2014. "Kelsey Sutton’s follow-up to SOME QUIET PLACE (Flux, July, 2013), set in the same world of personified emotions, in which a girl wanting revenge on the man responsible for the death of her family is influenced by both Forgiveness and Revenge and must ultimately choose which path to take."