REVIEW: PAMELA SPARKMAN – REVEREND OF SILENCEReverend of Silence by Pamela Sparkman
Also by this author: A Monster Like Me
on January 14, 2020
Genres: Historical Fiction, Literary Fiction, Historical Romance
Tropes: Disability
Format: eARC
Source: Author
Cliffhanger: No


A coming of age story about faith, love, and overcoming society's prejudices during the American Antebellum period.

In 1810, Lucy Hallison suffered from a severe illness at the age of three, and later recovered, a deaf-mute. Unable to relate to the world in which she lives, she’s often ignored and sometimes treated with cruelty. Until a boy, Samuel Burke, steps into her life at the tender age of seven, coloring her world and showing her what it means to be seen, to not be invisible, to be understood.

The two become inseparable childhood friends, and as they grow and mature, there is the promise and hope of something more that also grows between them. But the hope of something more is put on hold so she can attend The American Asylum at Hartford for the Deaf and Dumb, the first of its kind, requiring her to leave the only home she’s ever known and the only boy she’s ever loved.

But while she is away, tragedy strikes, and Samuel is now the one unable to relate to the world in which he lives, unable to find his own voice, and withdrawing from everyone and everything he’s ever known.

When Lucy returns home from school, she has one goal in mind—to put color back into his world the way he had once put color into hers.

Because Samuel Burke had been her voice when she had needed him most.

Now, she is determined to be his.

Note: Inspired by real people and true historical accounts.


by Pamela Sparkman

I need to tell you a story. I need to tell someone—if you’re willing to listen. Really listen. That will be the crux of this story. Listening. And not with your ears, but with your mind, your heart. Your soul. It was how she taught me to listen. And it will be how I teach you.

Pamela Sparkman’s new novel REVEREND OF SILENCE is a special book. It’s not just the stunning cover that certainly draws the eye, it’s the story about a deaf girl, her brother and their best friend who will get your tear ducts working and tug at your heartstrings.

In the 1800s people who were deaf were considered only a step above animals, their family cursed for some sin they supposedly committed. It is then that we meet Lucy, Noah and Sam. Sam’s deeply ingrained sense for right and wrong is what leads to change. He teaches everyone around him that Lucy is a human being with feelings and worries and that includes even Lucy’s family who doesn’t really know what to do with her. He is the first to see Lucy, all of her and it’s no wonder he falls in love with the girl whose smile is like sunshine.

Then she smiled at me, and when she did, her whole face went soft. And something inside me went soft too.
“Hi,”I breathed. “I’m Sam.”
Her smile got bigger. And something else occurred to me. When she smiled like that, she was even prettier than my mama.

Lucy is such a lovely character with a heart of pure gold and a stubborn streak. Noah completes their trio with his steadfastness and his love for Lucy and Sam. He is the kind of guy who takes things into his hands when actions are needed and stands up for what is right. Their bond was inspiring and uplifting and so incredibly tight that it stood every test and trial as long as they were together. I also adored the dynamic between the two families. There was so much warmth and love.

Pamela Sparkman is a master researcher and a perfectionist. With Reverend of Silence she gives us the hard truth of the way people with a disabilities and their family were treated. Even the name for the school Lucy went to, The American Asylum for the Deaf and Dumb, implies the disregard and disrespect these people were considered with. From a today’s point of view it’s appalling and upsetting.
While this story has religious themes, not surprising with Sam’s dad being a man of the church, it never becomes preachy or intrusive. This, to me, is one of the things that are of utmost importance – I don’t want to feel reprimanded or patronized for not being a religious person.

As a romance lover you definitely get your money’s worth. Sam and Lucy’s love story is front and center and the heart of this book. Cleverly weaved into the plot are historical facts that help to set the scene and make this story educational and alive. It’s a gorgeous, vibrant testimony of friendship and loyalty that will give you hope, hope that love prevails, even in this time we live in. Written in stunning prose you would miss out if you didn’t pick this up.

We didn’t need words to communicate. Our hands didn’t try to speak in sign. We spoke in a language that was as old as time itself. And on that night, in that tiny little woodshed, we burned together, and together we rose up into something made whole—into something made new, created out of fire and ash. And it was beautiful.

About Pamela Sparkman

"Even as a young child I was always conjuring up stories and filling them with colorful characters, sharing them with anyone and everyone who would listen. Since then, I’ve progressed quite a bit to formulating longer and more complex stories and sharing them with much larger audiences. As a professional storyteller, I’m adept at using my imaginative thinking and creative flair to bring my stories to life in engaging and entertaining ways."

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