I'm not sure if this book is a great choice for the state of California. But as the 19th book in the Kinsey Milhone mystery series, all taking place there, it works. I think the series give the reader a flaver of California outside the beach, Hollywood, and San Francisco arena.
This novel doesn't give us a lot of background on Kinsey. Grafton probably figures we all know her heroine quite well. She's gritty, opinionated, and smart. All wonderful qualities for a P.I. In Silence, she is hired to investigate the 34-year-old disappearance of Violet Sullivan, her employer's mother. Kinsey knows she's on the right track when she finds her tires slashed; and, sure enough, the clues lead to a final conclusion. The reader gets to know all those involved in the mystery through the investigation and through flashbacks telling us what actually happened in 1953. I thought Grafton misled her readers through the flashbacks. We are led to believe certain people are responsible without any clues that may have made us look elsewhere. After 19 novels, I was impressed with this departure from Kinsey's usual investigations.