Author: Brad Parks
Publisher: Dutton Books
First Published: March 7, 2017
First Line: "Their first move against us was so small, such an infinitesimal blip against the blaring background noise of life, I didn't register it as anything significant."
Book Description from GoodReads: A powerful and moving breakout thriller about a couple who are plunged into unimaginable terror when their children are kidnapped, and the stop at nothing compulsion to get them back.
Judge Scott Sampson doesn’t brag about having a perfect life, but the evidence is clear: A prestigious job. A beloved family. On an ordinary Wednesday afternoon, he is about to pick up his six-year-old twins to go swimming when his wife, Alison, texts him that she’ll get the kids from school instead.
It’s not until she gets home later that Scott realizes she doesn’t have the children. And she never sent the text. Then the phone rings, and every parent’s most chilling nightmare begins. A man has stolen Sam and Emma. A man who warns the judge to do exactly as he is told in a drug case he is about to rule on. If the judge fails to follow his instructions, the consequences for the children will be dire.
For Scott and Alison, the kidnapper’s call is only the beginning of a twisting, gut-churning ordeal of blackmail, deceit, and terror; a high-profile trial like none the judge or his wife has ever experienced. Their marriage falters. Suspicions and long-buried jealousies rise to the surface. Fractures appear. Lies are told.
Through it all, Scott and Alison will stop at nothing to get their children back, no matter the cost to themselves…or to each other.
My Rating: 2 stars
My Review: Say Nothing is about the abduction a federal court judge's six-year-old twins and the manipulation of the judge's caseload by the kidnappers.
The short chapters kept the pace moving during the kidnapping and readers witness Scott's increasing mistrust of those around him. Unfortunately, I didn't have a connection with the characters, especially Scott. For a man who just lost his kids he didn't show enough emotion and came off as indecisive. I had a hard time believing that a man who usually holds so much power as a federal judge could be so easily swayed to 'say nothing' and do nothing to save his own young children. It didn't ring true for me and doesn't make for a strong thriller when the protagonist goes along with what the kidnappers want for most of the book. I wanted him to take charge and get his kids back but instead we are at the mercy of the kidnappers who are mere caricatures of villains.
The book is touted as a thriller and while there were a couple of suspenseful scenes ultimately the book lacked tension and solid characters. Instead, the focus is on Scott's court docket and how the kidnappers want to manipulate his upcoming court cases to their benefit. Legalese and court cases took over much of the book and may interest some readers but not this one. I wanted more suspenseful scenes with twists, not details about patents and court cases. At this point my interest waned drastically to where I struggled to finish the book.
The writing itself is okay but never drew me in and lacked the tension and well-rounded characters I had expected.
Disclaimer: My sincere thanks to Dutton Books for providing me with a complimentary e-book copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.