Over the past year I've read several Heather Hildenbrand's books. I believe WHISPER makes book number four. And each time I begin a new book, I'm consistently struck by her talent. Hildenbrand's writing is simply pure, a true pleasure to read.
WHISPER is the story of a young woman, Whisper, struggling through the depression that follows her parents' tragic deaths. Withdrawn from the friends, activities that once occupied her life, Whisper honestly just wants to be left alone, away from pity. When she happens upon a young man in the woods, injured, with no memory or family, Whisper's life is set on a new path of love, loss, and destiny.
What I found interesting about WHISPER was the use of the Native American, specifically Cherokee, culture and beliefs. I must admit, I've read very few books with Native American characters. My knowledge about the culture is very limited. (Although I think every kid I ever went to school with claimed their grandmother was half-"Indian". Always Cherokee.) So with that limited knowledge in hand, I was fascinated by the legends employed in the story.
The use of the Native American legends made me consider an entirely different train of thought. Which is, while I would technically classify WHISPER as a paranormal story (based on events throughout the last half of the book), if you believe in the Native American culture, that's not necessarily the case. The events would be considered entirely possible. Granted, this whole line of thinking has gotten a bit off point, but I'm hoping someone will think that is as cool as I did.
I did find the pace at the beginning of the story to be a bit slow. A lot of that can be contributed to the effort of laying out the background to Whisper's story; her parents' deaths, the depression that followed. Once Whisper and the boy she rescues begins to piece together the whole story, that's when the story really began to gel and move for me. I loved the revelations, the struggles, and the conclusion. And I am always happy to find a nice stand-alone story.
I found WHISPER to be a really good, beautifully written story. Heather Hildenbrand never disappoints me.
"If there was ever a moment so sweet, so brimming with life that I knew I'd never forget it, this was it. Our breath hung on the air. There was a collective pause that seemed to include, not only the house itself, but the entire universe. As if every existing thing hung in the balance under the weight of our joined gaze." (ebook, 46%)
Published April 19th 2012 by Accendo Press
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Source: Received from author for review.