“Time governs our entire lives, looming over us. It controls every aspect of life. You spend too much time on one thing, it eats away time from something else.”– excerpt from Silvers Hollow by Patrick Delaney
I’ve always had a fixation with time, so these lines struck me. I instantly highlighted them. Time plays an important role in my life. I never have enough. So I schedule it, organize it, feel its fleeting weight as the hours tick away while I’m trapped under a meaningless task. Perhaps that’s why time plays such a role in almost everything I write—especially in the Equitas Series, where I live vicariously through Saran’s ability to bend it to her will. This line, however, isn’t what made me love Silvers Hollow.
Delaney’s Silvers Hollow drops you right into mystery from page one. There is no before and after for the character. There is only the event, an ever-increasing surrealness that keeps you guessing and on the edge of your seat page after page.
The main character wakes at a train station that hasn’t run in years with no memory of how or why they’re there. It’s dark. So dark. Too dark. And they are, unfortunately, without their watch. Time, and the lack of being able to tell what time it is, haunts the character (and you), as they explore the skewed reality of their childhood hometown.
Delaney has a rhythmic, conversational writing style that centers you in the driver’s seat. You experience the devolving events and the main character’s splintering psychosis with them. You are not reading about their journey; you experience their journey, which adds to the uneasiness you feel as you read.
I practically finished Silvers Hollow in a day, which is saying quite a lot for me. I started it while I was pregnant last year and had to put it down at 13% completed because I was just too exhausted to read. Every time I started, a nap called my name. I picked it up this weekend while trapped beneath my almost 4-month-old, who will not take a decent nap unless she’s in my arms. I don’t mind. They are only so little for so long. Anyway, it provided four to five 30-50 minute chunks of time in which to devour Silvers Hollow, and I gobbled it down whole.
I recommend you do too.