Silver Lake

( 9 )

Overview

A 2010 Lambda Award Finalist for Best Novel

Robbie and Carlo have been involved professionally and personally for twenty years. Lately, though, their architectural practice and their marraige are beginning to falter.

One fall day, Tom Field, a peculiar young man, drifts into their storefront office asking to use the phone. The men get to talking; Tom is curious but enchanting, and Robbie ends up playing tennis...

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Silver Lake

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Overview

A 2010 Lambda Award Finalist for Best Novel

Robbie and Carlo have been involved professionally and personally for twenty years. Lately, though, their architectural practice and their marraige are beginning to falter.

One fall day, Tom Field, a peculiar young man, drifts into their storefront office asking to use the phone. The men get to talking; Tom is curious but enchanting, and Robbie ends up playing tennis with him that afternoon, ultimately inviting him home for dinner.

The ensuing evening involves a lot of wine and banter and then increasingly dark conversation, and when the stranger has had too much to drink, the two men insist he sleep in their guest room.

During the night, Tom commits an act of violence that shatters the couple's ordered lives—the men are forced to cope with the blossoming doubt and corrosive secrets. Each in his own way, Robbie and Carlo seek to understand the disquiet stemming from their time with Tom.

"...beautifully written, suspenseful new novel..."
-Los Angeles Times

"In his trademark crystalline prose, reminiscent of Patricia Highsmith, Gadol vividly illustrates the universal themes of the stranger who comes to town, the quest for redemption, and the entanglement of deception."

-Booklist


"Silver Lake is compulsively readable, a novel that combines all the suspense of a psychological thriller with beautifully observed details of contemporary domestic life in Los Angeles. This is a haunting book full of both beauty and dread."
-Sarah Shun-lien Bynum, author of Ms. Hempel Chronicles

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly

The peaceful home life of two L.A. architects is brutally disrupted after they find their overnight guest, eccentric artist Tom Field, hanging from their neighbor's tree in Gadol's sad, chilling sixth novel. Is it suicide, murder or a prank gone seriously wrong? As LAPD's Detective Michaels investigates, the architects Rob Voight and his partner of 20 years, Carlo Stein, each nurse a secret. Carlo, who met Tom after a carjacking months earlier, had an affair with him that ended before Tom showed up at their office needing a phone. Rob retrieves Tom's address book without telling Carlo or Michaels, and begins calling Tom's contacts to inform them of his death and to learn more about him. Acts of vandalism aimed at Rob and Carlo contribute to the brooding sense of unease. While some readers may find the ending confusing, Gadol (Light at Dusk) scores points about the importance of truth in enduring relationships. (Aug.)

Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Library Journal
On the surface, Robbie and Carlo seem to have the perfect life, sharing a beautiful home and an architecture firm. Robbie is a dreamy optimist; Carlo is pragmatic and responsible. Their peace is shattered one night by a seemingly random crime, but they discover that the foundation of their relationship had been compromised by fault lines long before the attractive stranger named Tom appeared at their door. For the first time in 20 years, both men find themselves keeping secrets from each other and testing their respective roles in the relationship. Despite the intimations of violence, Gabol's sixth novel (after Light at Dusk) isn't a thriller but rather an exploration of how the fear of loneliness can restrict or damage lives, written in a leisurely, restrained literary style. VERDICT Fans of domestic novels will appreciate the finely drawn portrait of a long-term couple confronting the choices they have made in life, but readers may not be persuaded that Tom is as fascinating as everyone else in the book believes. [Tyrus Books is the new publishing venture of former Bleak House founding editor Benjamin LeRoy; this title was originally listed as a Bleak House publication.—Ed.]—Devon Thomas, DevIndexing, Chelsea, MI
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780982520918
  • Publisher: F+W Media
  • Publication date: 9/1/2009
  • Pages: 296
  • Product dimensions: 5.60 (w) x 8.60 (h) x 1.40 (d)

Meet the Author

Peter Gadol, a Harvard graduate and resident of Los Angeles, is the acclaimed author of six novels. His debut novel, Coyote, was hailed by the Los Angeles Times as "the work of an energetic mind, one seemingly unfettered by fashionable norms." His novel In the Long Rain was translated into several languages and nominated for a prize from PEN West.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 9 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(5)

4 Star

(1)

3 Star

(2)

2 Star

(1)

1 Star

(0)

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Sort by: Showing all of 9 Customer Reviews
  • Posted August 2, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Couples who live in glass houses ...

    Carlo and Robbie are a middle-aged gay couple in Silver Lake (an upscale, rustic suburb of Los Angeles) who own a business together in town, and live together in a glass house, literally and figuratively. A seemingly random visit by a younger man, asking to use the phone at their office to call a mechanic after a car breakdown, exposes the cracks in their seemingly solid twenty-year relationship. Asked to play a round of tennis with Robbie, and then to their home for dinner, the young man's unusual insights and dark conversation both intrigues and scares the men. When the young man has too much to drink they invite him to spend the night in their guest room, but awake the next morning to find he has apparently committed suicide by hanging himself in their yard. The incident, and reflections on their brief connection with the young man, continues to drive the couple apart, as they ponder that night and the feelings it brought to the surface.

    A rather dark but excellent story, illustrating how compromises in a relationship can come back to hurt its participants, and how easy it is for real communication to break down. It's also an outstanding character study of the couple, the young man, and also a fatherless teenager whom the couple has occasionally mentored. There's even an element of mystery, in that you know there is more to this than the characters have said, so far, and you don't really find out the entire truth until the ending of the story, when the other characters do as well. I give it five out of five stars, dangling from a blackened pepper tree.

    - Bob Lind, Echo Magazine

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted May 16, 2012

    Intriguing read

    Silver Lake is not your typical mystery. Tom Field, a houseguest at the home of partners Robbie and Carlo, takes his own life in the middle of the night. Tom's death affects Robbie and Carlo in different ways and causes both men to look at their relationship and themselves, the secrets they keep and the lies they tell. And along the way the reader also searches for the truth as to what exactly happened to Tom that night.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 28, 2012

    Silverlake

    This is my den.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 26, 2012

    Not a bad read - until you get to the end.

    The last ten pages or so are just too confusing.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted May 20, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    slow start

    Haven't wanted to try to read further than 20 pgs - did not get my interest.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 22, 2012

    Skypaw

    Whooaaaa. That was a good story! How old r u? And when people tell somebody else to go somewhere, r other people supposed to go there too? Thnx! S k y p a w

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 1, 2012

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted August 10, 2012

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted May 29, 2012

    No text was provided for this review.

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