Linda’s Book Obsession Reviews “It Happened in Silence” by Karla M. Jay, Book Circle Press, 2020 On Tour With Suzy Approved Book Tours
Kudos to Karla M. Jay, the author of “It Happened in Silence” for writing such a captivating, riveting, enthralling, compelling, heartbreaking, emotional and thought-provoking novel. The genres for this novel are historical fiction, southern fiction and family and domestic fiction. The timeline for this story is set around 1921 near the Appalachian Mountains, in Georgia. The author contrasts the good and evil in society. This is a time when contrasts between wealth and poverty could mean freedom, and living vs. servitude and death. In this time law and justice could be bought in many cases, and were unfairly biased. This is a time when prejudice existed, and Black and white people were not treated equally. This is also the time when handicapped and physically challenged people weren’t accepted by society. Women didn’t have the same rights as men, and some wealthier women belonged to the KKK. Children of poor families could wind up in orphanages, and some babies were in baby farms, There were betrayals, secrets, and attempts at keeping things a mystery.
I appreciate that Karla M. Jay vividly describes the characters, events, and the historical significance in this story. This is an emotional and tragic view of the very worst in society, yet, some people were brave, kind, and helpful. The author describes her dramatic characters as flawed, complex and complicated. Some were mean-spirited and evil. Some were courageous and brave.
Willow Stewart, is 15 years old and mute. When her newly born baby brother dies she has to find her brother Briar, and a preacher. Unfortunately Willow doesn’t realize that her brother is in a chain gain serving a prison term. She also isn’t quite aware of the danger and greedy men and the corrupt system. Willow is capable of writing and sign language, but finds herself in trouble, and needs help. I highly recommend this memorable novel.