Cover image for Silence is golden : a Hilda Johansson mystery
Silence is golden : a Hilda Johansson mystery
Dams, Jeanne M.
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Publication Information:
New York : Walker & Company, [2002]

Physical Description:
226 pages ; 22 cm
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Hilda Johansson, the sleuth/maid in Dams' turn-of-the-century novels, is a perfect observer and commentator in this latest installment. All is not what it seems in the Studebaker household, as the rich keep secrets, and the poor suffer for them.

Reviews 2

Booklist Review

Here's the latest Hilda Johanson mystery, and it's a real corker. The time is 1903; the circus is in town (South Bend, Indiana); and Fritz, a friend of Hilda's younger brother, decides he wants to join up and become a trapeze artist. Then the real trapeze artists, the Stupendous Shaws, disappear. So does Fritz, who eventually turns up hiding in a barn, brutally beaten and claiming that he was abused. To make matters even more confusing, Hilda's brother, Erik, also vanishes. Can Hilda find her little brother? What happened to the Stupendous Shaws, and are they responsible for the goings-on in South Bend? In a genre with no shortage of amateur sleuths in period costume, Hilda is one of the most memorable: a maid in the household of the fabulously wealthy Studebaker family, a Swedish girl still relatively new to the U.S. (and still fumbling with her English), a totally unlikely detective. The secret to Dams' success is in the details: she plunks us firmly down in early-twentieth-century Indiana. We learn, without realizing we're being taught anything at all, about social customs, class divisions, even the day-to-day operations of a wealthy turn-of-the-century household. Great characters, fascinating history, compelling mystery: this series could go on forever. --David Pitt

Publisher's Weekly Review

Mystery NOTES Swedish maid and sometime South Bend, Ind., sleuth Hilda Johansson has a personal stake in solving her latest mystery: her brother Erik is having trouble getting used to their adopted country, and he may be hiding a deadly secret. Tackling Protestant/Catholic conflicts, rich/poor dynamics and a criminal act that's in the headlines today, a century later, with equal alacrity, the Agatha Award-winning author of the Dorothy Martin series, Jeanne M. Dams, offers up another one of her mysteries with a social conscience in Silence Is Golden. (July) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved