The Woman Who Couldn't Scream: A Novel

The Woman Who Couldn't Scream: A Novel

by Christina Dodd

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Overview

From New York Times bestselling author Christina Dodd comes the next riveting novel in the Virtue Falls series.

Merida Falcon is a world-class beauty, a trophy wife who seems to have it all…except she has no voice.

For nine bitter years, Merida lived to serve her wealthy elderly husband, never leaving his side, always doing his bidding…

On his death, Merida vanishes…and reappears in Virtue Falls with a new name, a new look, and a plot to take revenge on the man who loved her, betrayed her and walked away, leaving her silent, abused and bound to an old man's obsession.

But Merida faces challenges. Her school friend Kateri Kwinault is the newly elected sheriff of Virtue Falls. A chance meeting with her former lover intrigues him and brings him on the hunt for her, and meeting him face to face shakes her convictions. Will she have time to discover the truth about the events that occurred nine years ago? For someone in Virtue Falls is stalking women and slashing them…to death.

Danger closes in. Merida's fears build. There’s no one to turn to…no one she dares to trust. And she has to wonder—who is the killer stalking? Is he trying to silence forever THE WOMAN WHO COULDN'T SCREAM?

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781250028488
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Publication date: 09/05/2017
Series: The Virtue Falls Series , #4
Pages: 352
Sales rank: 565,283
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.10(h) x 1.40(d)

About the Author

New York Times bestselling author CHRISTINA DODD builds worlds filled with suspense and adventure, and creates the most distinctive characters in fiction today. More than fifty-seven of her novels have been translated into twenty-five languages, featured by the Doubleday Book Club, recorded on Books on Tape for the Blind, and been called the year's best by Library Journal. Dodd herself has been a clue in the Los Angeles Times crossword puzzle. With more than fifteen million copies of her books in print, including the Virtual Falls series (Obsession Falls, Because I'm Watching) her legions of fans always know that when they pick up a Christina Dodd book, they’ve found, as Karen Robards writes, “an absolute thrill ride of a book!”

Read an Excerpt

CHAPTER 1

Benedict Howard was used to having women look at him. He had money. He had power. He was ruthless. People saw that. In particular, women looked at him. As they always told him, they found him interesting.

Now, the most beautiful woman in the world looked through him. Not over him. Not around him. Through him.

The Eagle's Flight, the largest and newest sailing yacht in the high-end cruise line, cut through the waves with an authority that spoke well of the vessel's design as well as captain and crew. As the new owner of Birdwing Cruises, that gratified Benedict; his decision to buy the company had been sound.

But now at three days into the two-week transatlantic crossing, he stood by the port railing on the aft deck, and his whole attention was focused on the world's most beautiful woman.

Her skillfully tinted blond hair was styled in an upsweep with short tendrils that curled around her softly rounded face. Her nose was short and without freckles. Her neck was long and graceful. Her figure was without flaw, Barbie doll–like in its architectural magnificence, and unlike the other, determinedly casual passengers, she wore a designer dress with matching jacket and one-inch heels. Her wide blue eyes were set deep in an artfully tended peaches-and-cream complexion ... but they were blank, blind, indifferent. To him.

If she was trying to attract his attention by ignoring him, she had succeeded. But only for as long as it took him to recognize her machination. As he began to turn away, she looked toward a table set under the awning. She waved and she smiled.

Benedict was transfixed by her smile. He knew her. He was sure he knew her. From ... somewhere. Business? No. Pleasure? No. In passing? Absurd. Who was she? How could he forget the most beautiful woman in the world?

Stepping forward, he caught her elbow. "We've met."

She turned her head toward him, but as if his impertinence offended her, she took her time and moved stiffly. She shook her head.

"I'm sure we've met." He searched her face, searched his mind, seeking the time, the place. "You must remember. I'm Benedict Howard."

She wore a leather purse over one shoulder. With elaborate patience, she pulled it around, reached inside and pulled out a computer tablet. She brought up the keyboard and swiftly, so swiftly, she typed onto the screen. And showed it to him. It said, "How do you do, Mr. Howard. My name is Helen Brassard. I am mute, unable to speak. DO NOT SHOUT. I am not deaf. I certainly recognize you. You're quite famous in the world of finance. But you don't know me."

"I don't believe you."

She gave him a look, the exasperated kind that without words called him an idiot.

He realized he had instinctively raised his voice.

She typed again and showed him the tablet. "I'm sure we'll run into each other again. It is a relatively small ship and an intimate passenger list. Now if you'll excuse me, I don't like to keep my husband waiting."

Benedict wanted to insist, but he glanced at the small dapper gentleman who glared at him with imperious fury, the gentleman who was old enough to be her grandfather. But wasn't her grandfather. Benedict recognized him; that was French billionaire Nauplius Brassard. That was the husband.

Trophy wife. Helen was a trophy wife: head-turningly beautiful, no doubt accomplished in bed ... and mute. Perfect for the short, thin, elderly gentleman who had no doubt purchased her services for the long term.

Benedict let her go and turned away.

She was right. He didn't know her.

*
Helen Brassard seated herself next to her husband and used her hands to sign, "You look overheated and ready for your afternoon cocktail. Shall I order you a sidecar?"

Nauplius flipped his bony fingers around, grasped her wrist and squeezed. "I saw him speak to you."

She groped for her purse and tablet.

"No! That's how you communicate with everyone else. Sign to me."

She shook her captured wrist, trying to free herself, to make it easier.

"Sign with one hand."

She did as he commanded. "Benedict did speak to me." She kept that gentle smile on her lips. Ignored the pain as the delicate bones ground together.

"He's lost his looks."

Signing: "He was never handsome." Although that was the truth; when she had known him before, Benedict's awkward arrangement of facial features had been offset by his youth and charisma. Now he looked ... harsh, like a man who had tasted too much bitterness.

Nauplius adjusted his red bow tie. "What did he say?"

"He thought he knew me."

"Impossible."

Apparently not.

Nauplius was both jealous and selfish to the point of psychosis, but his skill at observing and interpreting others had brought him unimaginable wealth and a power he loved to abuse. Now he must have read her mind, for his grip tightened again. "You look ... not at all like the woman you were when he knew you." Menacingly, "Do you?"

There was the paranoia she knew so well.

"I have not been in communication with him either on the ship or off. You know that."

He did know that. He knew what she said and to whom, what she did and when. He owned her, and she knew from experience he was infuriated by this unforeseen intrusion into the quality of his life. Especially this intrusion; during their nine-year marriage, they had lived in France and Italy, Greece and Spain and Morocco, anywhere she was isolated by language barriers, utterly dependent on him, and very, very unlikely to run into anyone she had known before.

Like the old man that he was, Brassard moved his jaw and chewed at nothing. "I didn't know Howard would be on this cruise. What is he doing here?"

Signing: "I don't know."

"He didn't tell you?"

She took a steadying breath before she signed, "All he said was that he knew me."

"What did you tell him?"

"That he didn't."

"I'll get us off this ship."

She glanced out at the turbulent blue Atlantic, then up at the half-furled sails that caught the prevailing eastern winds. She signed, "How?"

"Helicopter. They can come out this far."

"As you wish." She bowed her head and waited.

His voice rasped with irritation. "But the helicopter — it's expensive and usually only used in case of emergency."

She signed, "That is my concern. A helicopter could cost possibly one hundred thousand dollars." Which Brassard could well afford. But wealthy as he was, he counted every cent and made sure she knew exactly how much she cost him.

He said, "I can call it in. I'm doing it for you."

She looked into his brown, deceptively soft eyes and signed, "You have no need. When I see Benedict, I feel nothing."

Brassard's grip tightened. "You never feel anything."

"Not true. Right now, you're hurting me."

In a swift, petty gesture, he tossed her wrist away from him.

As always, she was the perfect wife. In flowing, graceful movements, she asked, "Shall I order your cocktail?" and gestured to the hovering waiter.

*
For two days Benedict toured the working areas of the ship. He discussed meal preparation with the intimidated chef and the equally intimidated kitchen staff, inspected the lifeboats and their ongoing maintenance and gave orders to improve the air-conditioning in the stifling laundry area.

Then Benedict moved into the public areas, stalking the ship's photographer as she recorded the voyage as a video for purchase by the passengers. The invariably pleasant Abigail photographed passengers as they toured the bridge, arranged flowers, played bridge, ate and drank.

It was when he was with Abigail that he saw her again, the most beautiful woman in the world, in the midship lounge at the line-dancing class. Helen Brassard looked the same, tastefully dressed and in matching heels, and she frowned as she concentrated on the prescribed steps, placing each foot with a calm precision that created an anchor in the turbulently undisciplined line. She pulled the other dancers along, encouraging them with admiring gestures and warm touches to their shoulders. When the line completed the simplest dance step in unison, she smiled.

The most beautiful woman in the world had the most beautiful smile in the world, and Benedict was transfixed, enthralled, in need.

"That's Mrs. Brassard," Abigail said. "She's married to Mr. Brassard, who is possessive and quite ... demanding." Her voice conveyed a distinct warning.

Benedict turned his cool gaze on her.

She respectfully lowered her eyes.

Abigail was afraid of him; all the staff were afraid of him. Yet she wanted him to know his interest would not be appreciated by a paying customer.

A good employee. A brave employee, one with guts and intelligence. He knew how rare those qualities were, and how valuable to the cruise line. He would see to it that she moved up in the ship's hierarchy and if she continued to do well, she would be sent to college and eventually move into his family's company. "Thank you for your insight." Which he wouldn't heed, but that was of no consequence to her. He indicated a burly black man with massive shoulders and a calm demeanor. "That's Carl Klineman, right? I always see him lurking near the Brassards. What is he to them?"

"He never speaks to them, and they never even glance at him," Abigail said. "For the most part, he keeps to himself."

"And yet?"

She spoke softly, "Speculation among the staff is that he's their bodyguard. Or an assassin. But no one really believes that Mr. Brassard would be oblivious to an assassin. He is a very astute man."

Benedict sensed she had more to say. "And ...?"

He had to lean close to hear her say, "Very astute and very ... dangerous. We, the staff, take care never to displease him."

A man could learn a lot from his employees, especially in these circumstances, and Abigail was genuinely frightened. "Then I will take care to tread carefully around Nauplius Brassard." He gave Abigail a moment to recover, then in a brisk tone asked, "What do you photograph next?"

"Musical bingo in the Bistro Bar starts in a half hour."

"Let's go."

*
Benedict despised trophy wives. He always had. And that name: Helen.

Helen of Troy.

The most beautiful woman in the ancient world, the woman whose face launched a thousand ships. He could hardly believe she had been born with that name. Probably she had chosen it when she created her persona to trap a wealthy man ...

Benedict did his research and online he found out all about her.

Helen was the name she'd been given at birth. Her beginnings were humble; she had grown up in Nepal as the daughter of missionaries. When she was a teenager, her parents were killed in a rockfall and she was sent to the United States to live with her aunt and uncle in the south. She finished high school at sixteen and began college at Duke University, where her unusual beauty attracted Nauplius Brassard's attention. After a brief courtship, she graciously consented to be his wife and dedicated herself to him and his well-being. She did not work, did not express independent opinions, and during the days when he worked or during the evenings when he made public appearances, she never left his side.

Very neat. Very pat. But nowhere did any source explain why she could not speak. That single fact made Benedict doubt the whole story — although the numerous politically incorrect of the online community suggested that this disability made her the perfect wife for Nauplius Brassard.

The world abounded with snide jackasses.

And Benedict's curiosity was piqued.

Before the voyage had even begun, the crew had studied the ship's manifest and passenger list, memorizing every face and name. Now Benedict did the same. When he was satisfied with his ability to greet the guests, he joined the convivial table that nightly gathered after dinner at the aft main deck bar, a table that included five retired southern high school teachers making their annual pilgrimage to Europe, two university professors on sabbatical, a group of Spanish and Portuguese wine merchants, a skinny eighty-year-old corporate lawyer — and Nauplius Brassard and his wife, Helen.

Benedict turned a chair from another table and dragged it over. "May I join you?"

For a mere second, conversation faltered.

One of the middle-aged females scooted over. "We're all friends. Sit next to me." She placed her hand on her husband's arm. "We're Juan Carlos and Carmen Mendoza from Barcelona ... and you are Benedict Howard."

Apparently he wasn't the only one who had studied the roster. "That's right, from Baltimore, Maryland, USA. I buy and sell things."

"On a grand scale," Juan Carlos said drily. "The Howard family is known for its business ... acumen."

A nice way to say ruthlessness. "Yes." Benedict looked toward the opposite end of the long table. "But I interrupted the conversation. Please, continue while I sit and absorb the bonhomie." In fact, he had interrupted Helen Brassard, who had been animated and flushed as she recounted some story by signing while Nauplius Brassard translated in his faintly accented voice.

Cool and calm, she sipped her champagne and looked him in the eyes. She nodded. She put down her champagne, lifted her hands and signed, "Of course. I was telling this illustrious company about the surprise party my husband threw for me for my twenty-seventh birthday."

"Fascinating," he murmured.

With a turn of the head, she dismissed Benedict and signed to the assemblage, "On the banks of the Loire in the month of June ... he scheduled the Osiris String Quartet to play chamber music and had a catered picnic flown in from Vienna and laid on blankets on the grass. He hired a film crew to record each precious moment and he surprised me with a custom-made gift of polished amber stones set in a magnificent gold setting."

Benedict had trouble knowing who to look at — Helen, who was speaking, or Nauplius, who was interpreting. He glanced around and saw the others at the table seemed similarly stricken by uncertainty, and he wondered if they also found it odd to hear Nauplius Brassard praise himself so effusively ... in her words. Certainly Brassard looked smug as he spoke.

Helen gazed at her husband as if she adored him, placed one palm flat on her chest, and with the other she spelled, "The memory is engraved on my heart."

The wide-bellied, rumpled academic nodded and in an accomplishment Benedict admired, at the same time sneered. Dawkins Cipre didn't want to offend Nauplius Brassard, a generous donor to European universities. Yet as a professor of literature he could hardly approve such a romantic gesture; it might reflect badly on his pretentiousness.

Elsa Cipre, the academic's thin, nervous, carefully unmade-up wife and a professor in her own right, said, "Nauplius has studied the inner workings of a woman's emotions."

One of the schoolteachers rolled her eyes. Another said, "Bless his heart." Apparently neither Nauplius nor the self-important academics had impressed anyone.

Unfazed, Elsa continued, "Dawkins is an expert on classic medieval French romance literature. Perhaps, Helen, for your twenty-eighth birthday he could consult with Nauplius and bring the full weight of French literature to bear."

Faintly Benedict heard Carmen Mendoza moan under her breath.

Dawkins took the opportunity to launch into a college-level literature lecture in which he cited his years at Oxford and the Sorbonne. His pontificating encouraged low buzzing conversations to start and swell, and Nauplius Brassard flushed with irritation — he did not enjoy losing his place in the spotlight or being told what to do — and tried to interrupt.

Oblivious, Dawkins rambled on.

Without asking, the bar staff delivered another round of stiff drinks.

The band came in; the musicians played guitar and keyboard; the singer was thin, young, attractive and handled the microphone with an expertise that spoke of long familiarity. They began the first set.

Dawkins held forth until his wife touched his hand and they left to find the dessert buffet.

With a pretty smile, Helen pushed Brassard's drink toward him.

Brassard folded his arms over his chest, transferring his irritation to her.

She tried to sign to her husband, to cajole him into a better mood.

He turned his head away.

When she persisted, he whipped around to face her, caught her wrists and effectively rendered her mute.

At once she stopped her attempt, and when he released her, she contemplated the champagne in her flute and drank.

An interesting scene, Benedict thought. Helen was Brassard's whipping boy. What kind of background created a woman so greedy she would put up with that kind of abuse?

(Continues…)



Excerpted from "The Woman Who Couldn't Scream"
by .
Copyright © 2017 Christina Dodd.
Excerpted by permission of St. Martin's Press.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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The Woman Who Couldn't Scream: A Novel 4.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 50 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Loved it!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Kateri, Stag and Lacy are not the main characters but they stole the whole show. Merry and Benedict were the main ones and their lives were full of lies and assassination attempts Love the plots.
ReadsWithGranddaughters More than 1 year ago
This continued suspense in Virtue Falls, Washington held my attention throughout the pages. I kept wondering about the background stories of Merida and Benedict and what secrets they held about themselves. And since I didn’t know the answers until near the end of the book, it kept me going at warp speed whenever I was able to read more. It was truly hard to put it down. Besides John Terrance, a truly bad dude from the other books in this series, finding out who the serial murderer is in this book was an even bigger challenge. And I was wrong on who was guilty! I love the sassy humor. The relationship between Sheriff Kateri and Stag is magical. When I finished, I wondered what will happen next in the characters’ lives. Whether there will be more Virtue Falls or not, I am satisfied with how this one ended, but I will still wish for more, as I will always have questions on what may happen next and whose lives will be at stake. There will always be crime in Virtue Falls, and the challenges Kateri has faced in the other books in this series and will face in this one, while having sustained more injuries than you can ever imagine, are admirable. The constant presence of Kateri portrays what a real force is like - I honor, respect, and love her. I highly recommend this book.
Caroles_Random_Life More than 1 year ago
I liked this book but I didn't love it. It has been years since I have read anything by Christina Dodd but I have really enjoyed her writing in the past so I was excited to get the chance to read this book. This is the fourth book in the Virtue Falls series and I think that I might have gotten a bit more out of it if I had read the previous books before jumping into this one. I didn't have any kind of difficulty following the story but there were times that I just felt like I was missing something. I did like the book and was eager how things would work out. This book really seemed to be telling more than one story. There is Merida, a mute woman, who has been recently widowed. The other main focus was on Kateri, the newly elected sheriff. Both of these woman had there own issues to deal and relationships to figure out. I honestly think that I might have like the book a bit more if the focus didn't shift back and forth as much as it did. There were quite a few times that I was pulled out of the story a bit as the point of view changed. There is a whole lot going on in this book. So much. There is a convict on the loose, a string of murders occurring in Virtue Falls, a relative in town causing trouble, romantic issues, a long lost lover, a comatose friend, plus a frog god. It was probably too much in a lot of ways and started to seem unrealistic. I am okay with the frog god not being realistic but I would have liked for a little more believability for the rest of the story. I really did like Kateri. She seemed to be able to handle just about anything but was willing to take advice from others. I liked Stag as well but he wasn't in the book as much as I would have liked but he seemed to really be what Kateri needed. I also really liked some of the members of the police force and the older bar owner. Merida and Benedict never felt completely real to me. I didn't dislike them but I wasn't sure if I should trust them either. I think that my biggest issue with the book was that things just seemed too convenient at times. As the excitement of the book peaked, the characters would catch a break that was too good to be true. Problems were solved a little too easily and solutions showed up just when they were needed. I am glad that all of the loose ends were wrapped up but I would have it to feel a bit more real. I do think that a lot of readers will enjoy this one. I enjoyed this book even though I had some issues with the story. I do hope to read more of Christina Dodd's work very soon. I received an advance reader edition of this book from St. Martins Press via NetGalley.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
You can never go wrong with her books. Read it in 2days
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
"Noooo!" I screamed. "I finished it, I finished it!" In one day. I couldn't put down"The Woman Who Couldn't Scream(Virtue Falls #4)." Now it starts over again. The LONG WAIT until the next Virtue Falls book is written. I discovered Virtue Falls quite by accident. I had never read Christina Dodd before, but the third book “Because I am Watching” was sitting pretty as you please in the mystery section of the library. I devoured it. Went back and found the other two. Holy schmoles what a terrific series! Wonderful plots, fabulous characters, hot sex-wait did I really say that -and a setting I want to move to. I think after I move to Louise Penny's Three Pines I will purchase a vacation home in Virtue Falls, WA. "The Woman Who Couldn't Scream" does not lose steam, not in the slightest. We have two major story lines, the mute, most beautiful woman in the world (MBWiW) moving to Virtue Falls to start a long anticipated plan to punish the man who caused her painful journey into being the MBWiW. We also have the continuing story of Sheriff Kateri Kwinault. Who doesn’t love Kateri? Who doesn’t want Stag? Poor Kateri, she seems to have a serial killer and maybe a contract killer or two wandering around the town. Evidently the MBWiW late husband believes in suttee. There is also an escaped meth dealer who is out for some serious payback. Kateri must make a choice about saving a dear comatose friend’s life by giving more of herself to the frog god, or to reject the powers offered by the frog god. The MBWiW has moved into a B&B having disguised herself as best she can-going for a punk street look. Unfortunately the disguise doesn’t work well and she is surrounded by people who think they know her and in some cases, want her. This is really conveniently bad luck for her. I wanted more; I wanted more of both Kateri and the MBWiW. Their stories intertwined, they were childhood best friends for awhile. Of course I always have a quibble section; in this book it’s hard to find many. I missed Rainbow up and at ‘em, I want more Margaret. I hate the term “bang’. Go ahead, use the big kahuna F word, it can be very sexy in the right place. It would have worked fine here; after all, the book is explicit in other scenes, maybe not enough of those scenes? Hey-I’m new to this mystery, romance and hot sex genre. I mentioned finding “Because I'm Watching” in the mystery section as a happy fluke, because it seems as if the Virtue Falls series is being marketed as romance. I rarely read books from romance writers (Dodd has helped change this) because evidently I have a dark soul. I think "The Woman Who couldn't Scream" is a terrific mystery with some great romance. Not a romance with some mystery served on the side. Thank you to NetGalley for the ARC in exchange for a fair and honest review.
elbarbee More than 1 year ago
I received a copy of the book from the author for an honest review. There is a lot going on in this book, some things more enjoyable than others. There are a series of murders which act to bring the main charaters and stories together. Newly elected Sheriff Kateri Kwinault is under considerable pressure to solve the murders and prove she can handle the job of sheriff. Additionally, she is still trying to find the fugitive Terrances AND recover from the shooting at the Oceanview Café. I did figure out what the killer was doing, but did not figure out who the killer was and that's always a bonus. While their portion of the story was interesting, I didn't particularly care about Merida and Benedict. I was much more interested in the resolution of the different threads of Kateri's story. I've always found Kateri more interesting than most of the other characters. Therefore, I was happy that so many plot lines were resolved in this book, including Rainbow's situation. All-in-all, I liked this book. While it was a bit unbelievable how some of the characters cross paths and the ending did seem a bit rushed; the writing was quite good and the book was a fast, fun and entertaining read. You can read this book as a standalone, but I think you would enjoy and understand it more if you read it in series order.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I really enjoy this book . I always look forward of reading one of her books. Enjoy
TinaC More than 1 year ago
This is the fourth book in the Virtue Falls Series and is an excellent read. It will be staying on my keeper shelf. I had to wait for my vacation before I could read this ARC. It was worth the wait. Each new book in this series becomes my new favorite from Dodd. There are two storylines in this between Kateri and Merida; childhood friends who meet again in adulthood. You can read this book without reading the prior three boos, but I recommend that they are read in order so you can get a little bit more understanding on the characters, I won't give away what happens in this book so as not to spoil it for anyone who has not read it yet. Excellent writing. A thrilling read..
JMuscari More than 1 year ago
Christina Dodd has done it again – I couldn’t put down her latest thriller. She catches you from the very beginning with her lovable, quirky characters and less-than-perfect heroes. It’s a quick read, and is my favorite of her Virtue Falls series. Just when you think you know what’s going to happen, she throws in an unexpected twist or introduces a new character. I hated to see it end….
BdWendel More than 1 year ago
Christina Dodd sent all four novels home in this Grand Slam of a book. If you have read the others, you have been waiting for Kateri's story. It's finally here in a wonderful mixture of her past, with one those friends you have forever despite distance and time, and her always cataclismic present. While this has the beauty of love for both women, it is also the story of two fiends who discover who they truly are, what they truly want, even while running away from the past that shaped them. The riveting moments of this thriller are just enough to place you on the edge, without taking the final, crushing, topple. The dry humor and beautiful honesty of the characters, as well as the amazing skills of a brilliant author, make this a book you just can't put down. All in all, this is Christina's Dodd's best book yet in the Virtue Fall series yet.
GailD More than 1 year ago
This is the 4th story in the Virtue Falls series. It can be read as a standalone. I love returning to Virtue Falls. You revisit old friends and meet new characters. This is a story within another story. Tied together by two women who knew each other in their childhood. It's a story of questions, mystery, deception. If you love mystery, suspense and a little romance, read this book!
MelissaWaldron More than 1 year ago
Christina Dodd has always been a must read author for me and as usual she never disappoints. While this book is part of a series, it can stand alone. I enjoyed Helen's part of the book, but my favorite parts were the Kateri story. She has been my favorite character in the Virtue Falls series. Thank you Ms. Dodd for another great book. If this book is your first in this series, you must, must go and read the other books. Enjoy!
CherylChavez1 More than 1 year ago
Christina Dodd has done it again!! I was so excited to get an advanced copy of Christina Dodd's latest book 'The Woman Who Couldn't Scream'! I had been waiting on pins and needles since reading the last book in the Virtue Falls series. I was all set to sit down and read. . . It was just one thing after another that interrupted my reading. Work, the husband, a gallbladder attract. Why was I being sabotaged? I was finally able to have two whole uninterrupted hours to read my book! (I did have to send my husband away for the afternoon and turn off my phone!) I finished the book and then I immediately purchased the audio version to enjoy over the next few weeks as my bedtime listening treat. Yes, the book is that good! I just had to have the audio version! (Perhaps I should tell you that I also have the first two books in hardback and audio?) Poor Kateri Kwinault just can't seem to catch break! Her father has passed away, leaving her a very odd gift that she does not want. Actually, she wants nothing to do with her father's family. Within days of becoming Sheriff of Virtue Falls, she and her best friend Rainbow are shot. (Rainbow is in critical condition) Then, in an all out car chase trying to capture the Terrances, she is in an accident! Merida Falcon, an old friend from Kateri's foster years moves into town. She has revenge on her mind. Can't say that I blamed her. There's a plot twist for you! Kateri's step sister shows up. She wants the package that their father had willed to Kateri because it is valuable. Kateri told her she gave it away to a friend. The step sister is determined to get the package. . .one way or another! There is apparently another serial killer on the loose. . .I thought I had that one all figured out. . . Nope. Christina threw in another little plot twist! I was wrong! I can't/won't say more because I don't want to give away the plot!
gqqfier15 More than 1 year ago
Excellent book! I loved it! I especially loved the characters! This was my favorite in the series.
mlyn2 More than 1 year ago
There were so many different stories jammed together in the book that sometimes the move from one story to another was a little jarring. All of the stories were good, there were just too many of them for one book. I would have liked to become better acquainted with Merida and Benedict but I never felt invested in their story. Kateri and Stag are favorites and because Kateri has been an ongoing character in the series I was really interested in her back story, especially her sister. I could go on about all of the other characters that were jammed together in this one book but i will only say even with the problems the book is still a good read. The Woman Who Couldn't Scream is not my favorite of the series, Because I'm Watching is still my top pick.
CAD0720 More than 1 year ago
Helen Brassard is the mute, beautiful trophy wife of an old nasty man. When he dies, she flees for Virtue Falls under an assumed name bent on revenge against her former lover. While in Virtue Falls, she reconnects with her old childhood friend, Kateri Kinwault, the newly elected sheriff, which is a good thing since women are being slashed and killed, and it seems to have something to do with Merida. This book was two stories in one - Merida/Helen and Kateri's. As someone who has read the three previous books, I will say that you definitely need to read all the boks in order to follow along with this book and the Kateri story. I really enjoyed reading the continuation of Kateri and Merida's story was a good side plot. Murder, mayhem, mystery with a dash of romance = great read. I can't wait to see what Christina Dodd comes up with for the next installment of Virtue Falls. Keep 'em coming!
A-bibliophile More than 1 year ago
Virtue Falls is a happening town. For a population of just under 2500, murder, deceit, shootings , vicious attacks, drug running, disasters and more are almost commonplace. In the 4th novel of the Virtue Falls series, several new characters take stage along with the familiar townsfolk and strong female characters lead the way in this interesting, twist filled, suspenseful story where romance, murder, mystery and mayhem abound. As was noted in other reviews, there is no need for me to supply a synopsis of the story; many reviewers have already done that. Just let me say that I read the last 100 pages, in bed, staying up til 1 am, on a work night. Enough said!
Middle-of-the-nighter More than 1 year ago
Reading a chapter of a Christina Dodd book is like trying to eat just one potato chip… I bargained with myself that I would clean some part of the house, then read a chapter to reward myself, then clean another part, read another chapter, etc. Pretty soon it was clean a room, read two chapters, then three chapters. Then take a break for lunch and read six chapters. Then decide I was still working if I threw in a load of laundry and read a few chapters while the clothes churned away downstairs. On the way down that slippery slope, I figured that it really wasn’t vital that I clean today; I could always do it tomorrow. And so it is with Christina Dodd’s books – don’t plan to read one if there’s stuff you have to do, because you just don’t want to put her books down once you get started. This book is no exception. “The Woman Who Couldn’t Read” is the fourth in the Virtue Falls series. I won’t go into a synopsis here – you can read many of the other reviews for that – if you’re wondering whether you need to read the previous books first, the answer is no. Each is a stand-alone. (Highly recommended for their can’t-put-down-quality, but not necessary to understand the characters, etc.) For those who have read the previous novels, you’ll be delighted to know that Kateri gets her turn to shine. For those who haven’t read it, no worries, you and Kateri are about to become BFFs. Are the main characters likeable and will you care about them (very important to me if I’m going to invest a few hours of my time reading about them)? Yes and yes. Predictable plot? No – plenty of twists to keep it interesting, without being confusing. Is it worth your time and money? Yes and yes! If you are already a fan of Christina Dodd, you already have high expectations and she doesn’t disappoint in this one. If you are new to her work, you will be gobbling up the rest of her books after reading this potato chip.
mspring4 More than 1 year ago
I was very excited to read The Woman Who Couldn’t Scream. This novel follows two storylines in Virtue Falls. The first follows Merida Falcon on her quest for revenge. A terrible explosion left Merida in need of a lot of medical procedures and a deal to marry an elderly man she comes to loath. Upon his death, Merida turns up in Virtue Falls to further her plot of revenge against the man she believes tried to kill her. Merida meets up with her old friend, Kateri Kwinault. The second storyline follows Sheriff Kateri as she tries to stop John Terrance and his path of crime and destruction. With so much going on in town it’s a wonder she finds time to spend with Stag Denali. There are a lot of twists and turns as we try to figure out who’s trying to kill Merida and cause trouble in Virtue Falls. I couldn’t put this book down. I loved the romance thrown in with all the suspense. I highly recommend this book.
LisaKS More than 1 year ago
I love Christina Dodd's books. I really do. Especially the Virtue Falls series - they take me to the edge of my seat and leave me hanging there because I can't put the book down! This is no exception. Without giving away any story spoilers, you need to read this book. Even if you have not read any of the previous Virtue Falls books (but you should) read this one. I needed a manicure after reading it.
mcg0 More than 1 year ago
I really enjoyed this book, but have to admit that it was the secondary story and romance featuring long-time Virtue Falls resident Kateri Kwinault that really had me hooked, rather than the primary character, Merida Falcon. Kateri has been featured in all of the Virtue Falls books so far, and it was very satisfying to get her story fleshed out even more. The primary story of Merida, a mute woman who has come to Virtue Falls after being widowed and discovering a man from her past was well-done, but was not as interesting to me as Kateri finding love at last. One thing that I found myself becoming a little annoyed with was the hunt for John Terrance, a criminal from a previous book -- the hunt just seemed to go on too long for my taste. But overall, a really great book, and I look forward to the next book in the Virtue Falls series!
TerriR More than 1 year ago
This is my fourth book I have reviewed authored by Christina Dodd and I have to say this is the one book I cannot put down! I have read the other books in the Virtue Falls series and love them as well. This book is full of intrigue and mystery. The characters are well crafted and have a story all their own. All the plots are intertwined very well and keep you captivated to turn the page to see how it will all end. I have to say it is a page turner. I especially like the character of Miranda Falcon. Was she betrayed by the man she loved or was she? You have to read the book to find out. Christina Dodd has outdone herself again! Now I can't wait for her next book!
MrsAgnew2014 More than 1 year ago
Christina Dodd did it again! I thought I knew who the culprit was going to be but I was completely wrong. This maybe the best story in the series yet! I love the story of Merida and that we got more of Kateri's story too. I will be recommending this book to all my family and friends. I can't wait to see what else Ms. Dodd has for us and Virtue Falls.
JBA36 More than 1 year ago
This book does not disappoint! I have loved the town of Virtue Falls since the first book was written and this one was no different. I was hooked from the first chapter. It was intriguing and funny and suspenseful all at the same time. Virtue Falls is a small town with big problems. It was great to see the people come together to work at the problem and the love they have for their resident waitress. Kateri is great as sheriff and she has her own problems with love and trust. There was a lot going on in this book but it was great to see it all come together. I cannot wait for the next chapter in Virtue Falls!