Book Review: The Silent Patient by Alexis Michaelides

“Choosing a lover is a lot like choosing a therapist. We need to ask ourselves, is this someone who will be honest with me, listen to criticism, admit making mistakes, and not promise the impossible?”

― Alex Michaelides, The Silent Patient

British-Cypriot novelist Alex Michaelides's psychological suspense book The Silent Patient was published in 2019. The first book was released on February 5, 2019, by Celadon Books, a part of Macmillan Publishers. Michaelides chose to set his story in a mental hospital since he had previously worked at a secure psychiatric facility for minors while studying psychotherapy. The plot was based on Euripides' Athenian play Alcestis, and Agatha Christie's writing had an impact on the narrative framework. 

Synopsis from Goodreads...

Alicia Berenson’s life is perfect. She is a famous painter married to a fashion photographer. They live in a grand house with big windows overlooking a park in one of London’s most desirable areas. One evening her husband Gabriel returns home late from a fashion shoot, and her wife, Alicia shoots him five times in the face, and then never speaks another word after the incident.

Theo Faber is a criminal psychotherapist who has waited a long time for the opportunity to work with Alicia. His determination to get her to talk and unravel the mystery of why she shot her husband takes him down a twisting path into his own motivations—a search for the truth that threatens to consume him.

My reaction to this novel...

After reading mysteries and thrillers for a time, I've discovered that not all of them are really compelling. Even though I've owned The Silent Patient for a while, I haven't had the opportunity to read it. The pandemic, though, was the reason I chose to start.

This book is interesting and stays with you. The way this tale came to an end stunned me. I’m constantly on the lookout for a book that will give me shivers and make me ponder the entire time I’m reading it . You should put The Silent Patient on your reading list since it is a must-read. This book undoubtedly falls under the same category as my favorite novels Gone Girl and Before I Go To Sleep.

In the end, I think this book has the potential to generate a lot of discussion and could perhaps be turned into a film. It's not a fast-paced story in terms of extremely important events or frightful situations, but I found some little chapters to fly by and I was intrigued the entire time since I wanted to know what happened and I liked the author's writing style. S killfully crafted. Breathtaking. A paradox that I can't divulge without destroying everything. I was completely smitten. And I long for more. Since it kept me guessing up to Alicia's accident that put her in a coma, there is no dead air for me. The story is really impossible to put down; I found it to be extremely engaging. 

I'd like to read another book similar to this one. I will without a doubt recommend this book to those who like mysteries and thrillers if given the chance. Actually, I put this book on my list of favorites. I would definitely purchase and read another Alex Michaelides book.

My Overall Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐(5/5)

"We often mistake love for fireworks - for drama and dysfunction. But real love is very quiet, very still. It's boring, if seen from the perspective of high drama. Love is deep and calm - and constant."

When it comes to love, the majority of us often have high hopes. We tend to believe what we see on screen. We believed that it should be dramatic and grandiose, similar to what we see in movies. The mutual attraction should be ethereal. What we should understand is that love should be profound. Even if we have challenges during the relationship, it ought to speak to our spirit and our desire to stick with it. It is not love that is spectacular, but the relationship between two individuals who work hard to make every day magical regardless of the challenges they face in their day to day relationship.

“You know, one of the hardest things to admit is that we weren’t loved when we needed it most. It’s a terrible feeling, the pain of not being loved.”

As humans, we need to love and be loved. It is just the way we are by nature. We yearn for love. Love is something we believe in. So when you feel unwanted and alone, it may be quite tough to move on, especially considering the challenges you are experiencing. Managing such reality is really challenging. That is why most individuals suffer from depression because they are unable to move on and no one around them is willing to lend a helping hand to offer support and love.

“Perhaps some of us are simply born evil, and despite our best efforts we remain that way.”

I'm not sure whether this is true because I still believe in other people's kindness. That goodness resides within everyone of us. People are not born wicked; rather, some people develop that disposition as a result of their upbringing and circumstances. I firmly think that everything has a purpose such as why did they change into that way, etc. If this adage were accurate, it would imply that certain individuals, if they are born evil, cannot alter their ways, despite their desire to do so. This would be extremely tragic.


Disclaimer: Booksreadbyhannel is not a business website. The opinions expressed here are unbiased and based only on my own feelings and reactions while reading the books I featured here in my blog. My reviews reflect my utmost sincerity. I paid for the books I review here out of my own pocket. Books provided by authors and publishers are otherwise specified.