The Silent Patient by Alex Michaelides

My heart was racing through this entire book. The Silent Patient by Alex Michaelides is a fast-paced psychological thriller that had one of the most twisted endings I’ve read in a long time. I can honestly say this is one of the best books I’ve read this year.

Alicia Berenson is a famous painter, married to a fashion photographer. From the outside, the two appear to live a life what many would say is picture perfect. That is until Alicia kills her husband — shooting him five times in the face. Then never speaking another word — she is silent.

After being charged with the murder of her husband, Graham, Alicia has been silently, and drugged up, in a forensic unit in North London, the Grove, for six years. Her only affirmation about what happened is her self-portrait, Alcestis, named after the heroine in a Greek tragedy by Euripides. It depicts her naked body, fresh scars on her wrist, a blank expression and a paintbrush in her hands, dripping with red paint.

Theo Faber is a criminal psychotherapist who’s accepted a job at the Grove in an attempt to help Alicia. He is desperate, maybe even obsessed, with learning her motive in killing her husband, Graham. He believes he can get her to talk, even those others have tried and failed, can Theo succeed in getting Alicia to reveal why she killed her husband? Or is there more than meets the eye with Theo’s obsession with the murderess?

Wow! This book just blew me away. What really intrigued me was the way we got to hear Alicia’s voice in this story. While she is said to be silent, the reader gets a glimpse of her not only through Theo’s discussions with those in her life before the murder, but through her diary entries! We actually hear Alicia’s version leading up to the murder via her written words. I sat there anxiously waiting for her diary entries to hear what made Alicia snap. But brilliantly, Alex Michaelides, dangled me through the chapters leading me to that shocking twist ending that I, quite honestly, never saw coming!

While most of the novel is told through Theo’s perspective, we are given a glimpse into his life, thoughts and even his inner workings of his mind. I was intrigued as to why he was so obsessed with Alicia and her motive. I kept asking, why is he so consumed to learn the truth? Is it for his career? To prove something to his family? These questions were constantly popping up while reading this book, making me more and more eager to get to the ending!

The Silent Patient by Alex Michaelides is a fascinating, compelling and dazzling psychological thriller that was extremely immersive and riveting. From the start I knew this books was going to be a page-turner! It held my attention from the beginning to that shocking twist ending! Let’s just say I’m eagerly waiting for Alex Michaelides to write his next book, because I’m very ready to be blown away by an ending like this one! By far one of my favourite psychological thrillers of 2019!

Thanks to the ladies of Atlanta’s Social Book Club for choosing this book for our July read! I listened to this on Audible and was blown away by the two narrators. I highly recommend listening to this one on Audible if you can!




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