Synopsis of The Silent Patient
Alicia Berenson’s life is seemingly perfect. A famous painter married to an in-demand fashion photographer, she lives 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 Alicia shoots him five times in the face. And then never speaks another word.
Alicia’s refusal to talk, or give any kind of explanation, turns a domestic tragedy into something far grander. A mystery that captures the public imagination and casts Alicia into notoriety. The price of her art skyrockets, and she, the silent patient, is hidden away from the tabloids and spotlight at the Grove, a secure forensic unit in North London.
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….
Review of The Silent Patient – Alex Michaelides review
Very good and with an original story.
Alicia Berenson, a successful painter, hasn’t said a word since she was arrested for murdering her husband Gabriel, whom she loved deeply, and has been admitted into a mental institution.
Theo Faber, a forensic psychotherapist, is very interested in treating Alicia and getting her to talk. He wants to know, at all costs, why she committed the murder and, for that, he asks to be transferred to the institution in which she’s been admitted.
The novel is entertaining and easy to read. The main points of interest are obviously two:
Why has Alicia, so in love with her husband, murdered him by shooting him five times in the face?
Why is Theo Faber so interested in making Alicia talk and know the motives that led her to murder Gabriel?
Well, the solution, both of Alicia’s and Theo’s motivation, is not known until the end of the novel. The reader doesn’t suspect anything because there’s a key piece of information that’s not clear to them until the very end. It has to do with the timelines in which the novel is structured. And I can’t say anything else.