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After the Silence Inspector Rykel by Jake Woodhouse

After the Silence Inspector Rykel

Part of the Amsterdam Quartet with Inspector Jaap Rykel Series
Thriller / Suspense   Crime / Mystery   Debuts of the Month   Literary Fiction   eBook Favourites   eBook Favourites   
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May 2014 Debut of the Month.

Energetic and stimulating, this edgy crime thriller is set over a period of a five days in the Netherlands. When you start reading it feels as though you could have joined midway through a series, there are hints of intriguing past histories that you want to know more about; consequently you sometimes sense you are racing to catch up, you are kept on edge, trying to work out what has happened, what is happening, what will happen. The three main players, fascinating, different and with their own demons to conquer, attempt to get to grips with a tangled web of murder, corruption and horrific depraved criminality. This is a challenging and thought provoking read. ~ Liz Robinson

In addition to our Lovereading expert opinion some of our Reader Review Panel were also lucky enough to read and review this title.

Reader Reviews

  • Cathy Petersen - 'Haunted characters and dark secrets at the heart of Amsterdam make for an engrossing first novel.' Read full review >
  • Gavin Dimmock - 'A brutal killing; a couple burnt to death in a house fire; a missing child. These crimes lead Inspector Rykel and his colleagues into the darkest side of depravity in Amsterdam.' Read full review >
  • Chris Parfitt - 'Well written introduction to Inspector Japp Rykel that takes you on a trip into the darker side of Amsterdam where drugs and prostitution are only the tip of the iceberg.' Read full review >
  • Cyllene Griffiths - 'Despite the awful nature of the crimes this is a not a depressing read – it is compelling and absorbing and a real treat for crime thriller fans.' Read full review >
  • Victoria Whish - 'The first of a quartet featuring Inspector Rykel, this will definitely whet your appetite for more. A fast-paced thriller that delivers the right amount of twists and turns to keep you hooked.' Read full review >
  • Sarah Musk - 'A tense, dark detective story set in Amsterdam.  The subject matter is grim but Jake Woodhouse tells a very compelling, sometimes complicated tale.' Read full review >
  • Jan Kirkcaldy - 'I’m already looking forward to the next in Jake Woodhouse’s intended ‘Amsterdam Quartet’ series. A thoroughly enjoyable and gripping read.' Read full review >
  • Reba Khatun - 'After the Silence’ is set in Amsterdam and unlike other non-British and non-American crime novels this novel is easy to follow although the sensitive subject of the book is very upsetting.' Read full review >
  • Cleo Bannister - 'An action packed thriller set in Amsterdam...if you like your police procedurals fast and furious this could be the book for you.' Read full review >
  • Magda North - 'This book was not one for me, but there's plenty there to make it worth a read.' Read full review >
  • Carol Peace - 'European crime at its best...A very solid read.' Read full review >
  • Marta Sloma - 'Not your average crime, not your clean cut police officers, not your typical location. Which is why 'After the Silence' is such a compelling read.' Read full review >
  • Barbara Goldie - 'Amsterdam and thrilling crime a real mix! I really enjoyed the author’s portrayal of the seedy side of Amsterdam and look forward to the next offering from Jake Woodhouse. A recommended read.' Read full review >
  • Alan Brown - 'A book which is set up to compare with the best of today's crime fiction. Not quite there yet as the plot lines are not as strong as they could be?' Read full review >

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After the Silence Inspector Rykel by Jake Woodhouse

After the Silence is the utterly compelling crime debut from Jake Woodhouse. A body is found hanging on a hook above the canals of Amsterdam's old town, a mobile phone forced into the victim's mouth. In a remote coastal village, a doll lies in the ashes of a burnt-down house. But the couple who died in the fire had no children of their own. Did a little girl escape the blaze? And, if so, who is she and where is she now? Inspector Jaap Rykel knows that he's hunting a clever and brutal murderer. Still grieving from the violent death of his last partner, Rykel must work alongside a junior out-of-town detective with her own demons to face, if he has any hope of stopping the killer from striking again. Their investigation reveals two dark truths: everybody in this city harbours secrets - and hearing those secrets comes at a terrible price...After the Silence introduces Inspector Jaap Rykel in a gripping debut police procedural from Jake Woodhouse, which is sure to appeal to fans of Ian Rankin, Peter Robinson and Stuart MacBride. This is the first novel in The Amsterdam Quartet series. Jake Woodhouse has worked as a musician, winemaker and entrepreneur. He now lives in London with his wife and their young gundog. After the Silence is the first book in his Amsterdam Quartet.


Utterly enthralling ... looks set to be one of the key sequences in modern crime fiction -- Barry Forshaw, Crimetime This is a great debut * Crime Fiction Lover * A strong sense of place is matched by a capacity for storytelling that keeps the plot accelerating * Daily Mail * This gripping detective novel will thrill fans of The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo and bears comparison to Fatherland ... Utterly unputdownable * Sun * Complex ... intriguing ... keeps the reader hooked * Eurocrime * Dark, claustrophobic and non-stop * Crime Review * Does for Amsterdam what Rankin did for Edinburgh ... a rich cast of characters, a sinewy, complex plot and a starring role for Amsterdam are the highlights of this brilliant debut ... a great read * Crime Thriller Hound * So fast it leaves tyre tracks. From the shocking first pages to the final paragraph the tension remains and never lets up for a single moment ... disturbing, claustrophobic and utterly thrilling * Crime Squad * After the Silence is as dark and twisty as the Amsterdam it navigates and Rykel a fascinating and original protagonist. A promising start to what could be a great series -- Stav Sherez, author of A Dark Redemption A complex, brilliantly written crime novel, which builds to a truly shocking climax -- S.J. Sykes, author of Plague Land Superficially, a cracking cops 'n
robbers story, but with a deep, dark heart. You will read it in just a few sessions and be gripped

... The conclusion is intense, violent and shocking ... it left me literally dry-mouthed ... For someone on only his second novel, he writes like an established master -- Crime Fiction Lover on Into the Night Jake Woodhouse's taut, twisty plots are expertly woven and beautifully written. They are peopled with complex characters that will have you turning the pages to see what becomes of them. He has created a flawed gem in Inspector Jaap Rykel, a cop with an assured literary future -- Craig Robertson, author of Witness the Dead and The Last Refuge

About the Author

Jake Woodhouse

Jake Woodhouse has worked as a musician, winemaker and entrepreneur. He now lives in London with his wife and their young gundog. After the Silence is the first book in his Amsterdam Quartet.

Below is a Q&A with the author.

1) After the Silence – what’s the elevator pitch?
Five days in Amsterdam, city of vice.
Three cops in a race against time.
One missing girl and a brutal killer who keeps on killing.
Fast paced, gritty thriller with a lyrical side to it. And there is an elevator which plays a minor role somewhere towards the end.

2) Where did your inspiration come for the Amsterdam setting?
I studied music in Amsterdam, and performed there on and off over the years. I love to walk round cities, and Amsterdam is a great city to do that, compact with a huge range of diverse architectural styles and fascinating, contrasting districts. When I sat down to write my first book I didn't make a conscious decision to write about Amsterdam, it just happened.

3) Can we expect more case-cracking from the Amsterdam Police Force?
Absolutely! After the Silence is the first instalment in the Amsterdam Quartet, a series of four interlinking novels which cover four years in the life of Jaap Rykel.

4) How would you describe your protagonist, Inspector Jaap Rykel?
Jaap Rykel is a searcher, someone who wants answers, even if they lead him places he'd be better off avoiding. He's also a man trying to achieve balance in a crazy world, but as things get tough he starts to lose faith in his convictions, and his rational side comes increasingly under attack by another, darker, more irrational part of him. This struggle is one of the main themes of the Amsterdam Quartet.

5) What do you enjoy reading?
Pretty much anything I can get my hands on! We didn't have a TV when I was young, so I've always been an avid reader. It's hard to pin down favourites, but I hugely enjoy T.C. Boyles' novels; his verbal exuberance, wit, and feeling for people in tough situations keeps me rereading his books, I never get tired of them. The same goes for David Mitchell - I read Ghostwritten a few years ago and was instantly hooked, so I rushed out and bought all his other books. Quite simply he writes lines which stop you dead in your tracks, I tend to like that in a writer.
In Crime I've recently been reading a lot of Don Winslow who is just getting better and better with each new book (and he was pretty damn good to begin with), pushing the boundaries of what can be done with a crime novel. And although I've not read them for many years, I keep meaning to reread the Asterix books...

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Book Info

Publication date

26th March 2015


Jake Woodhouse

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Penguin Books Ltd


448 pages


Thriller / Suspense
Crime / Mystery
Debuts of the Month
Literary Fiction
eBook Favourites
eBook Favourites

Modern & contemporary fiction (post c 1945)



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