Silence - Michelle Sagara, Michelle Sagara West I fully did not expect to enjoy this book all that much, to be honest. I read a lot of reviews ahead of time (which I shouldn't do but I have no willpower) and the reviews for this book amongst my friends were pretty mixed. Usually when reviews are mixed, I fall on the 'dislike' side. Not this time. I'll admit that the first 120 pages were not wowing me because I found the pacing pretty slow, but even then I loved the writing so I stuck with it. I'm glad I did because this ended up being a book that I really enjoyed. Articulating why that is is going to be sort of difficult, however. So as in all my reviews, when my brain isn't functioning correctly, I do a list. ~I thought the premise of the book was pretty original and that continued throughout the world-building, which by once I got to the end, almost left me breathless. I usually avoid paranormals for this reason because they tend to focus on the romance and less on the actual plot. Not here. I wouldn't even say there was a romance in this one.~Which brings me to the next plus. I totally thought there was going to be a romance. And while there was a bit of flirting and a little sexual tension, ummm, that's it. And oh HOW refreshing that was. Dynamic characters, a potential future romance, but we didn't need to rush into anything. It's almost like this author has been listening to reader complaints. Thank you!~The characters were pretty awesome, actually. Emma was a wonderful protagonist who felt real, was flawed but not annoying, and a protagonist I liked. (This is rare these days, I'm telling you.) Plus, there's a dog named Petal. A rottweiler who is like, awesome. He is totally my dog in so many ways. ~I can almost guarantee that you will like the potential (but not yet) love interests. They are actually likable guys with personalities and depth. This could have potentially been ugly because they are both sent to kill Emma, but it totally doesn't play out in that cliché, tragic way. No, you won't be mad at these guys. It's not like Twilight and Edward always wanting to eat Bella in every scene they are in. ~I loved the writing. The author has this vivid way of writing her prose that really made me picture every scene. I also really enjoyed the cadence and flow of the words. I found myself reading more slowly just so I could savor the text. This is always a good thing because I so rarely do it.That said, I have a few small complaints. I do think the setting could have been stronger. The lore and setup were wonderful, but I wasn't even sure where this book was taking place until some character ( I don't remember who) mentioned Toronto. Oh, Canada? Okay then. (Note: I just saw that Toronto was mentioned in the blurb. I forget details in blurbs a lot but I am laughing at myself anyway.) Haha. For a book that featured necromancers and graveyards a lot, it was suspiciously missing the creep factor. I just think if a little more time had been devoted to building the setting and imagery, the book would have had more of a punch.Also, the pacing. The author really needs to watch that. Because I could have easily set the book down and walked away in the first hundred and twenty pages before it really got going. The book is not really that long and I am lucky I was patient with this one--I am not usually--because it was worth it. But how many people are going to stick it out through all the slow build up and 'he said, she said' crap? But you will because I told you to, right? Right? ;)I can't wait for the next book because this one was just so, so much fun to read. The ending was one of the most satisfying I have read in awhile. It wrapped up perfectly, left a tear in my eye, and opened perfectly for the next book without it being the type of cliffhanger that will piss you off. Hopefully the pacing in the next one will be fixed now that all the exposition is out of the way. Crossing my fingers for that one.