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A passionate, fragmentary girl, maybe?

The Silent Patient by Alex Michaelids

The Silent Patient by Alex Michaelids

Alicia Berenson is an artist; a painter. She is married to Gabriel, who is an artist as well, and more precisely, a photographer. You can say that Alicia and Gabriel are the perfect couple. They love each other so much. Wait, that’s not how the story, or at least the book begins. The beginning describes a murder that happens in their own house. Gabriel is found killed: several gunshots on his face and body. Where is Alicia? She is sitting next to him. Her wrists are cut as if it’s a suicide attempt. One should presume she has killed Gabriel, and decided to take her life as well, as an act of guit, maybe? Six years later, and after Alicia has been put in a madhouse, a psychotherapist starts to work there. Dr. Theo Faber joins the institution. I feel like I should update you with the fact that everyone in that place acts in a very weird way. Not to mention their aggressivity (well, that’s how I put it) towards Theo. Wait! let’s get back to Alicia, she hasn’t spoken a word since her husband’s attempted murder. Is it shock? It is trauma? Is she even the killer? All the police did was to assume what I have mentioned above. The interesting thing in Alicia is that she has painted only one painting after Gabriel is gone. She has painted herself, along with her cut wrists, and entitled her work of Art as Alcestis. Alcestis, and I feel you should know this as well, is “An intimate Kitchen-Sink Greek tragedy” in which a man is condemned to die, and his wife, Alcestis, wants to save him. Alcestis, in the story/ legend, dies and is reborn. Alicia ends up making a decision that she will keep silent for good. Wait! I should update you more and more, but without spoilers. Alicia has always kept a diary. In that diary, you will get introduced to Max, Gabriel’s adopted brother. Max harasses Alicia on several occasions. According to Alicia’s analysis, he is jealous of Gabriel, and thus tries to take everything from him, including her. In the diary, you are going to be introduced to Jean-Felix as well. He is Alicia’s friend in the gallery, an artist as well. A week before Gabriel’s murder, Alicia decides to leave the gallery. Jean-Felix gets angry, because he thinks it is Gabriel’s influence on Alicia. Wait! There is Paul Too, Alicia’s cousin. He is a gambler and an alcoholic person who pays Alicia a visit in her home, asking for money because he was in trouble. In addition to that, Alicia writes about a stranger man, who keeps watching her, constantly. I feel like I should leave you with a tiny detail before your minds start making a connection between these characters and point fingers towards possible murderers. The detail is the fact that Alicia has been mentally damaged long before the murder of her husband. In a more precise way, Alicia lacked at some point of her life a mental stability because her mother died when she was young and her father hanged himself. So based on the provided details, who do you think is capable of killing Gabriel? The loving wife? The brother who would inherit Gabriel’s money? The cousin who needs money as well? Or the stranger who keeps roaming around the house? As you can notice, the plot is somehow complicated and details and characters keep popping up one after another during the whole development of the story. The climax will just make you hold your breath in an anxious way that you just want to go on and read “one more chapter” till you meet the truth: the killer is …

I would highly recommend it to thriller lovers, and anyone who wants to know who the killer is. The ending? Trust me you will hold on, put the book, think, or even blink at your screen, for as much time as you wish. Try to get over it! Try not to question what you have read because it's true, and you are not confusing things! 

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