Got an email tonight. It asked about my review of The Silver Shadow. I was confused What about it? Then it hit me.
Yeah. I was supposed to have read and reviewed it for Saturday morning. As you can see, it is not Saturday morning. UGH. Last night I got busy cleaning and completely forgot to read and review that book. Okay, first I didn’t feel well and was lying around wishing I could just sleep it off. THEN I started cleaning when I felt better and voila! One book and review totally forgotten.
So… tonight, I picked up this book. I read it. And then, because I’m insane that way, at 1:40 in the we hours of this morning, I set off on my walk.
Because doesn’t everyone go for a walk in the dark after reading a book about a guy who bashed women in the head FOR walking around in the dark?
I’m not a jumpy sort of person, but I did pull out my phone. Twice. Of course, I tend usually to walk between 2:30 and 3:30, so there were more cars on the road–folks coming home from the bars. YAY! No one swerved or crossed over lines, so I think folks were sober. WOOT! But this book…
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How Was My Nightly Walk after Reading This Riveting Book?
I’m pretty sure The Silver Shadow is Liz Tolsma’s best book to date. I don’t say that lightly, because I LOVED The Green Dress more than probably all of the other books in the series (one still torments me a bit, though). Maybe it was just when I read it, or even that I just really resonated with the characters on a new level, but this one stands out more than all of Tolsma’s books. Polly Blythe (whose name really reminds me a lot of “Nellie Bly” of The Gray Chamber) is a beautiful combination of bold, feisty, uncertain, and vulnerable.
The crime–riveting. While motives and the actual culprit were fictionalized, I think Tolsma used the most actual people from the time in her book than in any other book, despite her claim that it is the most fictionalized of the ones she’s written. The fact that they never actually caught the killer, and she brought one to justice, of course makes that claim reasonable.
Of everything in the book though, two things stand out most to me.
First, personal motivations. I found that each character’s motivations for why they did what they did–particularly Edwin, his family, and Polly–were deep and layered. It wasn’t a simple case of a girl wanting to prove she could do a job as good as a man. One by one, Polly’s motivations were peeled back until you found a core beneath them that breaks your heart. The same is true for many of the characters.
Second, the characters’ faith. Each character had a different element of faith they demonstrated in quiet, natural ways that feel as if you’re watching faith in action by people who have no idea anyone would be observing.
While I received a review copy of this book free, I also purchased two of my own copies so… yeah. There’s that.
Recommended for lovers of historical fiction, true crime, and excellent writing that keeps you riveted to the page… and makes you look over your shoulder when you’re walking out alone after dark. 😉
Book: The Silver Shadow
Author: Liz Tolsma
Genre: Christian Historical/Suspense
Release date: May 2021
A Shadowy Figure Is Intent on Harming Denver’s Women
Book 11 in the True Colors series—Fiction Based on Strange-But True History
Denver of 1900 is still a dangerous place to be following the silver crash of 1893. And of out of the dark comes a shadow intent on harming women. Ambitious young Denver newspaper reporter Polly Blythe is searching for the big story that’s going to launch her career. On Friday evening, August 24, 1900, she gets her break when two women are cracked over the head within a two-minute walk of each other. But policeman Edwin Timmer thwarts Polly’s ideas of a serial criminal. . .until the shadowy figure strikes again. Will the reporter and the policeman team up to find the culprit before he strikes too close for comfort?