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Dead Silence de S.A. Barnes
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Dead Silence (2022 original; edició 2022)

de S.A. Barnes (Autor)

MembresRessenyesPopularitatValoració mitjanaMencions
1429163,056 (3.76)3
A GHOST SHIP.A SALVAGE CREW.UNSPEAKABLE HORRORS.Claire Kovalik is days away from being unemployed--made obsolete--when her beacon repair crew picks up a strange distress signal. With nothing to lose and no desire to return to Earth, Claire and her team decide to investigate. What they find at the other end of the signal is a shock: the Aurora, a famous luxury space-liner that vanished on its maiden tour of the solar system more than twenty years ago. A salvage claim like this could set Claire and her crew up for life. But a quick trip through the Aurora reveals something isn't right. Whispers in the dark. Flickers of movement. Words scrawled in blood. Claire must fight to hold onto her sanity and find out what really happened on the Aurora, before she and her crew meet the same ghastly fate.… (més)
Membre:Midnight_Reader
Títol:Dead Silence
Autors:S.A. Barnes (Autor)
Informació:Tor Nightfire (2022), 352 pages
Col·leccions:La teva biblioteca
Valoració:
Etiquetes:to-read

Informació de l'obra

Dead Silence de S.A. Barnes (2022)

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Es mostren 1-5 de 7 (següent | mostra-les totes)
Ehhh.....this wasn't a bad sci-fi novel, but often billed as horror, it's really not horror. It starts out by giving you the impression that this will be a horror novel set in the distant future and taking place mostly in space. While it kept me guessing, in the end it was just an average novel. ( )
  harpua | Jul 28, 2022 |
Dead Silence had such an interesting concept, the same pull that I crave when reading about haunted houses: finding an empty ship that has been lost for years, then discovering the bodies are still on the ship killed in grotesque ways. How does something like this happen? How does a luxury liner with the most famous and the richest of the rich just suddenly disappear for many years? A space concept I love. Alas, that was not to be the case as the story did not live up to its potential and I really, really struggled to get through it.

First of all, the ideas were really interesting and I really liked the first couple of chapters. It was ghostly, eerie, and I really soaked up the atmosphere as the crew explored the ship, horrified at what they discovered. You could just sense this eeriness and I was expecting someone to jump out at any time, having pulled some survival botanist trick (Mark Whatney-esque) from their butt. Unfortunately, the execution soon fell flat and I had a hard time getting through some of the scenes. I am not a fan of dual timelines, but I do wonder if this book would have benefited from that type of writing style which would have allowed the reader to experience what actually happened originally on the ship and allow the suspense to build up as they worked through the fear with its passengers and crew.. That same fear could have carried through the present day as the current crew dealt with the same fear which would have kept up the tension and fear. The way it was written destroyed the suspense for me as it was more telling the reader what happened which is wasted in a horror novel as it lowers the suspense and tension. And honestly, it got boring.

The biggest issue I had with this book was with the main character, Claire. I could have happily opened up an airlock at any point and tossed her out. I understand that she is dealing with some significant issues, but the author didn't allow for any character development or growth, not even one iota. It felt very tropey, making a main character weak so others can behave in certain ways and walk all over you even if you are the leader, creating tension between the crew. I just had a hard time believing that someone like Claire would be in charge of something like this in such an organization. I did like the other characters though, and wish the author had focused a bit more on them, especially Cain, I adored Cain.

Verdict
Dead Silence had a lot of potential, and overall, I did like some aspects of the book. When the writing and story were good, they were GOOD, and I was entranced and couldn't read fast enough, the horror elements being interesting and eerie. Unfortunately, the writing style was also a weakness, and there were times I had to drag myself back to continue reading, especially when Claire was being particularly annoying or the story took on more of a telling mode and lost me completely. Maybe I am being particularly difficult as I read a lot of horror? That being said, I will definitely read another book by this author and I am hoping she will write another space horror in the future. ( )
  StephanieBN | May 27, 2022 |
Answering distress calls from space is a sure way of meeting countless forms of trouble, and Dead Silence proves this point once again with a compelling, claustrophobic story that successfully mixes science fiction and horror.

Claire Kovalik and her crew of four are nearing the end of their last tour of duty servicing Earth’s comweb relays: from now on, Verux Corporation’s maintenance will be done through automated drones and Claire - whose past history made her unfit for reassignment on any other kind of ship - is now destined to a dead-end groundside clerical job. This bleak future seems inevitable until the LINA (the maintenance ship under Claire’s lead) receives a distress signal from beyond the comweb’s farthest range: as impossible as it might seem, the call comes from the Aurora, a luxury vessel that disappeared in mysterious circumstances twenty years previously, during its maiden voyage. The discovery, together with the possibility of financial security obtained through a salvage operation, drives Claire and her crew to board the Aurora, but what they find is a nightmare scenario: frozen corpses floating in microgravity, the unmistakable signs of senseless violence, and cryptic sentences drawn in blood on the walls. What’s worse, the LINA’s crew seems increasingly affected by this gruesome scenario as they keep hearing voices or seeing other people, impossible as it looks on this ship of the dead: fighting against time to effect the repairs necessary to bring the Aurora back toward civilized space, Claire and her crew must battle with their inner demons and the inexplicable horror that influenced the passengers, driving them to murder or suicide in countless gruesome ways…

Dead Silence drew me in from the very start, mostly thanks to its split narrative alternating between a present in which Claire is trying to reconstruct what happened on the Aurora, relaying her fragmented recollections to two Verux officials, and the recent past in which the LINA crew faces the grisly mystery aboard the lost ship - there is also a third timeline, seen through brief flashbacks, in which we learn that Claire is the only survivor of a doomed colony decimated by a viral infection, and which explains the heavy psychological burden that she’s been carrying ever since. Learning from the start that something went hideously wrong with the mission, and progressing forward toward the discovery in alternating timelines, is the factor that grabbed my interest from page one and compelled me to read on, fighting the mounting sense of dread that the story creates very skillfully.

As for Claire, she is a fascinating character because there are so many dark areas in her past that carry on in the present - including her suicidal thoughts at the prospect of being denied the freedom of space once the last repair tour will be over - and turn her into a possibly unreliable narrator, particularly when we learn that she seems to be the only survivor of the LINA as well, with no memory about what happened to her crew, except for some ghastly flashes of their deaths - provided, of course, that these are real memories and not part of the… visions that have been plaguing Claire since her childhood in the failed colony. Claire is indeed not new at ghostly visitations, and at first, when she sees some weird images on board the Aurora, she believes them part of her psychological problems, but when her crew mates start having the same kinds of encounters - which become increasingly horrifying and realistic - it becomes clear that something else is at work here.

The descriptions of what Claire’s crew finds aboard the doomed ship are quite vivid, a frozen (literally so) tableau of what must have been the last moments for crew and passengers alike before the life support cut off, and it’s clear that some form of madness must have infected them all because there is evidence both of deadly struggles and of suicides, the latter apparently induced by some form of despair or terror. The dreadful scenario is magnified by the luxurious setting, that of a ship where no expenses were spared for the comfort and enjoyment of the wealthy passengers, and yet no level of opulence could save those people from the deadly dangers of space, which is revealed once again as a hostile environment set on killing any “trespassers”. And whatever it is that pushed the people aboard Aurora toward violence is still present, encroaching on the minds of LINA’s crew, and further deteriorating the already tense interpersonal relationships between them as it enhances the climate of antagonism and distrust already present from the start.

I have to say that the author managed very successfully to infuse the story, from the very start, with a sense of dread and unshakable uneasiness, focusing them into a need to know what really happened, both to the Aurora and to Claire’s crew. I felt great sympathy for Claire because, despite her apparent unreliability, she comes across as an honest person, one whose life has been very difficult to say the least, but who is still capable of great feats of courage and determination in spite of the obstacles - material and psychological - on her path.

Where the novel falters a little, in my opinion, is in the revelation of the underlying mystery of the Aurora’s disaster, because after the amazing buildup leading to it, it feels almost… mundane, for want of a better word, and while it might make sense in consideration of the background laid by the story, to me it seemed quite anti-climactic. Also, the lack of explanation about Claire’s “ability” to see ghosts was slightly disappointing, because the little clues linking back to her childhood trauma appeared to point toward something intriguing. But these are minor problems in what proved to be a very appealing read, one that kept me awake until the small hours out of a burning need to see where the story would lead: as far as “space horror” goes, Dead Silence was a quite satisfactory find. ( )
  SpaceandSorcery | Apr 8, 2022 |
This book sounded fantastic, and it was a fast-enough read, but I also came very close to DNFing, which speaks to just how many problems there are.

On one hand, there are some fantastic ideas and images here, some of the visuals being wonderfully creepy, and there are moments when the author's writing really shines. The problems, though, are larger-level. In a lot of ways, this feels more like a YA sci-fi that was 'aged up' and forced into the Adults space, and the reasons I say that are at the heart of my critique. This book has all of the tropes that burned me out on YA sci-fi--characters put into leadership roles and responsibilities that they don't seem to deserve or be capable of fulfilling, a mysteriously mean corporation, high stakes that aren't entirely explained (this is important for this reason, but why that would be the outcome, who knows?), an overly voice-y protagonist who cycles on endlessly between thinking of a past trauma and second-guessing herself ad nauseum even when she should be focused on the present (to the point that, yes, it becomes very repetitive), and an awkward, shoe-horned-in romance that the book would be better off without. All of those things are things I expect to see in a YA dystopian or YA sci-fi, and when you add in the VERY young-feeling narrator here, I really wonder if this wasn't originally written as YA and then aged up either because of the horror-level images/scenes (few as they are) or the market. One way or another, it didn't make for a satisfying read.

The ending, though I won't get into spoilers, reinforces the feel that this was meant for younger readers, and to put it bluntly, it just ends up being kind of predictable and easy. On top of that, the book can't seem to decide what genre it wants to sit within, and when it comes right down to it, the book doesn't live up to the blurbs or the cover copy--it's certainly not 'the ultimate haunted house story, in space' as the Katsu blurb on the cover promises. There's also a complete lack of explanation for some elements which are central to how the story unfolds, and some serious plot holes. Things that were just forgotten or left out.

It's a fast read, as I said, so I imagine a lot of readers will speed through this, appreciate it for what it is, and move on, but in all honesty, it felt like a fairly sloppy story to me, and as I said, it didn't really feel like it was meant to be in the adult space at all. Since I'm personally burned out on YA sci-fi and YA dystopians, I probably wouldn't have picked this up if it were listed as YA with teen characters, but maybe that's the point.

I'd probably recommend this one to adults who like YA sci-fi (not horror, because this might be dark sci-fi, but it is not something I'd consider horror). Just don't get sucked in by the 'ghost ship' and 'haunted house in space' references on the cover, or you'll be disappointed. ( )
  whitewavedarling | Apr 3, 2022 |
If Aliens meets Titanic sounds like your kind of book, then you are in for a treat with Dead Silence by S. A. Barnes. Claire Kovalik is the sole survivor of a previous disaster on the Mars colony and was essentially raised by the Verux corporation for whom she now works. She is captaining a ship on the outer edges of the system on what is to be their final job before they are made redundant by automation. Just before heading back for their final rendezvous, they pick up a distress call. The call is from the Aurora, a luxury spaceliner that disappeared 20 years ago on its first flight.

The salvage value of this opulent craft and her famous passengers would be rich enough so that each of the small crew could live out their dreams. Once they find the craft they are surprised to discover that there doesn’t appear to be any obvious damage to it. Upon boarding, they discover that many of the passengers appear to have died violently. Making their way through the ship they begin to experience sounds and visions that are difficult to explain. Are there ghosts? Or aliens? Or are they simply going mad? And could it be that the Verux corporation hoped the ship would never be found?

Dead Silence is a great blend of science fiction and horror. Each character is distinctive and brings different attributes and weaknesses to the job. Barnes does an excellent job of creating mood and mystery. Claire is a complicated and sympathetic character that is honest about her own flaws and self-doubts. Even if you figure out what is going on before it is revealed, the entertainment of the journey is not diminished. Atmosphere is everything in a book like this and Barnes nails it. Dead Silence is a ghost story that will make you feel the cold of space and glance over your shoulder at every sound. This book is well-paced and filled with tension. Looking forward to seeing what’s next from Barnes!

I was provided a copy of this book by the publisher. ( )
1 vota tottman | Feb 8, 2022 |
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Cap

A GHOST SHIP.A SALVAGE CREW.UNSPEAKABLE HORRORS.Claire Kovalik is days away from being unemployed--made obsolete--when her beacon repair crew picks up a strange distress signal. With nothing to lose and no desire to return to Earth, Claire and her team decide to investigate. What they find at the other end of the signal is a shock: the Aurora, a famous luxury space-liner that vanished on its maiden tour of the solar system more than twenty years ago. A salvage claim like this could set Claire and her crew up for life. But a quick trip through the Aurora reveals something isn't right. Whispers in the dark. Flickers of movement. Words scrawled in blood. Claire must fight to hold onto her sanity and find out what really happened on the Aurora, before she and her crew meet the same ghastly fate.

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