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The Silent Land by Graham Joyce

The Silent Land (original 2010; edition 2012)

by Graham Joyce

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3414032,181 (3.7)41
Title:The Silent Land
Authors:Graham Joyce
Info:Anchor (2012), Edition: Reprint, Paperback, 272 pages
Collections:Your library

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The Silent Land by Graham Joyce (2010)


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During a skiing trip in the French Pyrenees, Zoe and her husband Jake are one morning surprised by a sudden avalanche while out on the slopes. Miraculously, they are able to dig themselves out, only to discover that the world they now find themselves in is not quite the same as the one they left behind. The village, their hotel, the cars in the street -- everything inanimate remains untouched; but there are no other people to be found anywhere, and some inexplicable force is preventing them from leaving town.

I was hooked from the first few chapters by this thriller from Graham Joyce. "The reveal" could admittedly have been more complex and dramatic, but I'd still recommended it for a fun, different, compelling read. ( )
  ryner | Aug 26, 2016 |
A young married couple on a skiing holiday is caught in an avalanche. Making their way back to their hotel, they realize they seem to be the only living things in an empty landscape. Their first assumption is that the resort village was evacuated; but mysterious phenomena quickly throw doubt on that premise.
At times, the story is a bit predictable and sentimental, but it also has times of genuine, effective spookiness and can be sincerely emotionally touching. It's almost like a more introspective version of The Shining. Very well written; I may seek out more of this author's works. ( )
  AltheaAnn | Feb 9, 2016 |
Meh. It was fine, but disappointing after all the rave reviews of Graham Joyce's earth-shattering brilliance. Maybe just not his best book? I don't know.
  mirikayla | Feb 8, 2016 |
An avalanche catches Jake and Zoe as they ski, and when they dig out, they find that no one else is around! Not on the mountain, not at their hotel, and not in the local village! The situation grows stranger and spookier and makes the reader think. I liked it, though I kind of knew what was going to happen. The author still kept my interest and I was still moved by the end. ( )
  Stahl-Ricco | Jan 23, 2016 |
On first reading the blurb of this book I found myself wondering what on earth Graham Joyce was up to. Joyce, as original a fantasist as the literary world has to offer, seemed to be going down a fairly well-worn route, if the description of the plot was anything to go by. A husband and wife, caught in an avalanche in the Pyrenees, make their way back to their holiday village, only to find it deserted, and all their efforts to leave bring them back to the same place. I mean, it's obvious what's going on here, right? The reader is right there, one step ahead of he characters.

But only one step. They're not dumb. The work it out, too. The question is, what happens next? The question is, why is this happening at all? Of course, the reader will work out the next thing early on, too, as they're supposed to, but this one is something the characters cannot or will not grasp, for a very good reason. And as the lights flicker and the shadows close in and the ghostly men get nearer, you know what must happen, but instead of being a hackneyed cop-out cliche, it's Hitchcock's old lesson about suspense being when you know the bomb under the desk is going to go off, and the ending is almost unbearable.

I was explaining this to my wife.

'Because it's a love story,' I told her, and she laughed.

'How did you manage to accidentally trick yourself into reading a love story?'

'Because it's Graham Joyce.'
( )
1 vote Nigel_Quinlan | Oct 21, 2015 |
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Lee, JohnNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Book description
She almost thought she could die in that place, and happily...

Zoe and Jake are caught in an avalanche during a skiing holiday in the French Pyrenees. They struggle back to their village only to find it deserted. As the days go by, they wait for rescue, they try to leave. But each time they find themselves back in the village, with the entire resort to themselves.

Then come the visions and the dreams, and the glimpses of familiar figures out in the snow.

And the realization that perhaps no one could have survived the avalanche...

The Silent Land is a brooding and tender look at love and whether it can survive the greatest challenge we will ever face.

Haiku summary

Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0385533802, Hardcover)

Award-winning novelist and cult favorite Graham Joyce transports readers to a mysterious world of isolation and fear with a hypnotically dark story about a young couple trapped by an avalanche in the remote French Pyrenees. . . a daring and powerful novel about love, loss, and rebirth.

In the French Pyrenees, a young married couple is buried under a flash avalanche while skiing. Miraculously, Jake and Zoe dig their way out from under the snow—only to discover the world they knew has been overtaken by an eerie and absolute silence. Their hotel is devoid of another living soul. Cell phones and land lines are cut off. An evacuation as sudden and thorough as this leaves Jake and Zoe to face a terrifying situation alone. They are trapped by the storm, completely isolated, with another catastrophic avalanche threatening to bury them alive . . . again. And as the couple begin to witness unset­tling events neither one can ignore, they are forced to con­front a frightening truth about the silent land they now inhabit.

Award-winning author Graham Joyce has written a mysteri­ous masterpiece, a tour de force that will thrill fans of Peter Straub and the hit television show Lost.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:19:28 -0400)

(see all 4 descriptions)

Buried under a flash avalanche while skiing, young married couple Jake and Zoe miraculously dig their way out only to discover themselves alone in an eerily silent, evacuated region and unable to contact the outside world.

(summary from another edition)

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