Rating: 4.5 stars
Buy Links: Amazon | iBooks | Amazon UK
Silence of the Moon is the second book in S.A. Pavlik’s excellent Secrets of the Moon series. The books follow closely upon one another and this review has a major spoiler for the ending of Death of the Moon. If you want to get started with this engaging paranormal mystery series, check out our spoiler-free review of Death of the Moon, as this series is well worth reading.
Alec is still reeling in the aftermath of Ari’s death two weeks ago. He not only feels betrayed by Ari, but he has also lost his closest friend and someone he has known for years. The situation has also stirred up so many of Alec’s anxieties, giving him renewed nightmares and panic attacks. Alec hasn’t been home since Ari died and he can’t imagine ever living in his apartment again. For his part, Damien can’t help but feel guilty for his role in Ari’s death. He knows Alec doesn’t blame him, but that doesn’t stop him from blaming himself for taking away someone so important to Alec.
Damien has now gotten assigned a new case; two young teens were murdered in a hotel under suspicious circumstances, but the investigation is seeming to go nowhere. When they learn more about how the kids were killed, it raises more questions than answers. And when it appears the murders have a supernatural connection, it makes the situation all the more complicated. Not only is Damien dealing with situations outside of his human experience, he also has to keep the whole supernatural world a secret. It gets even more difficult when Ari’s FBI connection, Thatch, comes to work at the station in an effort to close the cases of some of Ina’s victims. Damien is having to walk the middle, working with Thatch, as well as with his fellow officers who don’t know all the secrets.
As Damien digs more into his case, things take a worrisome turn within the larger shifter world. Many of the independent shifters are having a strange loss of their shifter senses, something particularly troubling for Alec, as he cannot rely on his vision. Something seems to be off with the moon’s song, and they are unable to connect to it as easily. Alec and Damien both find themselves losing time, and ending up in strange places. Birds are attacking — birds sometimes only Damien can see. The men soon realize they don’t what they can trust is real and what is some sort of illusion. But no one knows who is causing it and why. In the midst of all this, Damien needs to catch a killer, one who seems increasingly enmeshed in the current situation in the supernatural world. It is going to take everything the men have to figure out who is behind it all and make it out alive.
Silence of the Moon is a great follow up to Death of the Moon and picks up just as the first book ends. I really love this trilogy and find it so exciting, with some great mystery and suspense elements and an incredibly appealing couple in Damien and Alec. The author has also built a wonderful found family element as their little pack of two begins to expand, and we really develop that larger team of people all working together.
I can’t even do justice to explain the mystery side of things here, as it is so beautifully developed. Things are twisty and intense and Pavlik keeps so many threads going that end up moving and weaving together in interesting ways. What starts out as a bunch of seemingly unconnected issues then builds throughout the story until we see the whole explosive picture. It is exciting and so well done, I was on the edge of my seat the whole time watching it all unfold. I also appreciate how the big picture mystery and paranormal elements tie so well into the things affecting the characters directly on a smaller level, really building in some depth and bringing the story close to home. We also see Damien have to work through the fact that he is dealing with a supernatural mystery and must team up with people who have no idea the paranormal world even exists. Damien ultimately brings some people into the fold, and it was fun to see the shift from the first book when Damien was all wide-eyed wonder and now he is the voice of at least a little more experience. As I said, it also gives us a nice found family element as their inner circle begins to expand and Damien and Alec find they have more people they can rely upon.
The relationship end continues to build here in really satisfying ways. Alec is still really reeling from Ari’s death and basically came to Damien’s house and never left. Which, of course, thrills Damien, as he wants Alec as close as he can get him. The men have such a wonderful heat and intensity between them. They are a really sexy couple and I am enjoying seeing the men start to really rely on one another and build their bond.
We get a few fun twists here, my favorite being the addition of Rin the fox. Rin pretty much adopts Alec and she has some magical abilities that affect him directly in positive ways. Rin is sort of this adorable bossy sweetheart who manages to steer them in the right direction and get them out of a few jams. I also enjoyed seeing Alec’s friendship with Harper continue to grow and to see her come into her own after such a rough time of it in the first book.
My only small issue here is that this is a complicated series with detailed storylines and there is a lot to track from book to book. Even having re-read both my review and all my notes from book one, I did struggle at times to remember some story elements that came into play again here. While some reminders are woven into the story, especially early on, I think it would have helped to refresh readers a little more on some key events that happened in the past book. However, I did find myself feeling so immersed in this story, it was nothing really problematic and didn’t affect my overall enjoyment.
On an exciting note, at the end of the book Pavlik notes that the Secrets of the Moon series has always been planned as a trilogy telling Alec and Damien’s story, but it is now going to be the first in a trilogy of trilogies. The next set of books after this will focus on Jac (Damien’s fae ex), and then that will be followed by a third connected trilogy. I really enjoy this series and this great world Pavlik has built, so I am super excited to hear that the author is expanding the stories and there is lots more to come. This is a great time to jump in to this first trilogy and I am eagerly awaiting how it all comes together.