Brutal Silence

Fiction - Thriller - General
276 Pages
Reviewed on 03/16/2017
Buy on Amazon

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Author Biography

Born and raised just outside of New York City, Margaret Dardess has lived and travelled across several continents, landing at last in Chapel Hill, North Carolina where she probably should have been all along. She is the daughter of an artist and a poet, who were determined to steer their only daughter away from a life in the arts. For many years they were successful. Margaret returned to New York after graduation from Connecticut College to study Japanese history at Columbia University, and after a brief teaching career at the University of Illinois, went on to tackle the law. When she finally stopped going to school, she set off on a journey, masquerading as an international trade lawyer, a corporate communications executive and a university administrator until at last she cast her parents’ warnings to the wind and began to write.
Brutal Silence is Margaret’s debut thriller. After meeting a woman who escaped from human traffickers and hearing all that the poor woman endured, Margaret was so angry that she had to tell others about it. She chose to write an action-packed thriller as a way to make the issue of human trafficking come alive through fiction. Brutal Silence is the story of Alex Harrington, a resilient and gutsy young Southern woman who takes on human traffickers in her North Carolina town and in Mexico and wins.
Margaret lives with her husband and three cats in Chapel Hill and Wilmington, North Carolina.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Gisela Dixon for Readers' Favorite

Brutal Silence by Margaret Dardess is a gritty and realistic fiction novel on the topic of human sex trafficking. Alex Harrington from North Carolina is on a trip to Mexico with her friend. Although warned of the dangers of traveling alone outside Mexico City, Alex boards a public bus to do some sightseeing by herself. However, every woman’s worst nightmare comes true when she is kidnapped and finds herself among other victims of sex trafficking. Fortunately, she manages to run away but the trauma and the experience stay with her and, once back home, she is determined to do all she can to fight this human sex trade. However, she soon finds that her past experiences have caught up with her as she finds herself a target. What follows is a gripping thriller as Alex tries to grapple with the world she once thought was innocent, and faces the harsh realities of what really goes in the world of forced prostitution and sex trade all over the world.

Brutal Silence by Margaret Dardess is an intense novel about, unfortunately, a very real and widespread crime perpetrated all over the world. The scenes and narrative in the book provide insights into how vast this network of human trafficking is, along with the harsh realities of the very young girls, and even children, who are forced into this trade for various reasons and circumstances. Although this is a grim subject, Margaret has tackled it with just the right amount of realism and sensitivity. I hope a book like this motivates other readers to fight this crime, just like Alex does. A very well written book that I would highly recommend reading.

Margaret Dardess

Gisela Dixon's review captures the underlying theme of Brutal Silence and Alex's challenges and adventures, confronting evil and seeking justice, while at the same time finding her own strength. I greatly appreciate her perceptive reading of Brutal Silence.