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The Price of Silence

The Price of Silence

by Camilla Trinchieri

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A family haunted by grief becomes entangled with a possible murder.


A family haunted by grief becomes entangled with a possible murder.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
At the start of this taut psychological thriller from Trinchieri (The Trouble with a Bad Fit and other mysteries under the names Camilla T. Crespi and Trella Crespi), Emma Perotti, an ESL teacher in Manhattan, enfolds one of her students, An-ling Huang, into her family, despite her husband Tom's distrust of the young Chinese woman. Emma is driven in part by the guilt she feels for the infant daughter she accidentally ran over and killed years before-a secret unknown to Tom, the child's father, and Emma's teenage son, Josh. As the bond between the women grows, Emma's marriage stalls. She moves into a loft with An-ling, but the arrangement sours as Emma prepares to return home and An-ling seduces Josh. When An-ling is found dead, Emma is charged with her murder. Though Emma's sudden obsession with An-ling and the family's final redemption both feel slightly forced, the novel is a gripping, intelligent read. Particularly compelling are its subtle insights into the nature of family, foreignness and the lies we tell ourselves and others even when our intentions are good. (June)

Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information
Kirkus Reviews
Dark secrets trigger the bizarre murder of a young foreign student. Emma Perotti, an ESL teacher at Columbia, stands trial for the murder of her former student An-Ling Huang, a young Chinese artist, allegedly by spraying insulation foam into the mouth of the unconscious An-Ling, pregnant at the time of her death. Snippets of the trial are interspersed with the first-person memories of Emma, her husband Tom and her teenage son Josh. E-mails from An-Ling complete the puzzle, which Trinchieri tantalizingly doles out a piece at a time, along with hints of the lingering family trauma provoked by the death of Emma's very young daughter Amy. When Emma first meets An-Ling, the girl's halting speech, shy manner and intense admiration makes her a favorite student of Emma's. When the class ends, they lose touch. But after Emma runs into the girl, much harder and more mature, at a club in the East Village, they forge a new relationship, more a friendship than before, although An-Ling still refers to Emma as Lady Teacher. Then abruptly, An-Ling, eschewing her Chinese accent, reveals that she is actually Tom's daughter and has been deliberately stalking the family. Even more unsettling is the moment Josh and Tom interrupt Emma and An-Ling in the middle of a lengthy kiss. Prolific as Trella Crespi and Camilla T. Crespi (The Trouble with a Hot Summer, 1997, etc.), Trinchieri here debuts most auspiciously as herself.

Product Details

Soho Press, Incorporated
Publication date:
Product dimensions:
5.12(w) x 7.99(h) x 0.73(d)

Meet the Author

Born in Prague to an Italian diplomat father and American mother, Camilla Trinchieri came to the US at age twelve and returned to Italy after graduating from Barnard College. She came back to New York City in 1980, married, and earned an MFA in writing from Columbia University. As Trella Crespi and Camilla T. Crespi she has published seven mysteries.

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