Another Review at MyShelf.Com

Publisher: John Daniel & Co 
Release Date: October 2003
ISBN: 1880284669
Format Reviewed: Advanced Reader Copy 
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Genre: Mystery - Deaf character
Reviewed: 2003
Reviewer: Brenda Weeaks 
Reviewer Notes:  

Silence is Golden
A Connor Westphal Mystery
By Penny Warner  

     Eureka! News editor, Connor Westphal returns in her sixth mystery. Also returning is a town full of eclectic characters and Conner's love interest, former NY detective, now P.I. Dan Smith. Mystery readers can expect a complex whodunit, some interesting twists and turns, and a surprising end.

Seventy-two-year-old Sluice Jackson, Flat Skunk's oldest living prospector, didn't look cold…
Yesterday Flat Skunk had set a new heat record for August at 112 degrees.
"Cold!" Sluice hunched over and repeated the word in my face."
Maybe he had a fever that was giving him a chill.
Or maybe I was misreading his lips.
"Gold," Dan said, over-enunciating the word. Then he made the sign for "gold," which also doubles as the sign for "California." "He's saying 'gold,' Connor. Not 'cold.'" He tightened his fists and shivered them, indicating the sign for "cold."

     Looks like the weather and gold both are to blame for the temperature in Skunk Flats in Sierra Nevada. Now that Sluice has found a gold nugget it seems everyone has gold fever, except the skeptical editor-in-chief, Connor. When another nugget is found, and turns out to be from someone's mouth, Dan takes it to the local sheriff. Soon the government arrives blocking off Buzzard Mine from a town of gold diggers. Eventually, Dan is hired by a local because he thinks the skull with the lead and gold in it belongs to his long lost relative. The story is enough to uproot and upset Skunk Flats' history. Connor winds up in a mystery after she meets up with an old friend and his family. Josh and Connor dated while attending Gallaudet University. Tragedy strikes Josh's little family while they are visiting a doctor about a cochlear implant.

     Penny Warner's series is written in first person. She brings the honest, sometimes skeptical, and always amusing voice of Connor to life. Warner incorporates Connor's deafness into the storyline with lip reading, misunderstandings, deaf devices and such. It's a great way for the hearing to see into the deaf world and how the two can mingle, in Connor's case, without too much damage.

     This series improves with each new mystery. I highly recommend it.