Dear me, why the hell did it take you so long to read this book?! The Silence of the Lambs has been one of my favorite movies for a long time. I am a big fan of crime thrillers and that’s exactly what this story is. My mom has been telling me forever that I need to read the book and I’m so happy that I finally did!
So if you are not familiar with the story, The Silence of the Lambs follows Clarice Starling as she is going through FBI training at Quantico. She ends up receiving an assignment from her mentor, Jack Crawford, to go to meet the infamous cannibal Hannibal Lecter and try to interview him, a task that no one else has been able to complete because of his lack of cooperation. However, the real intention is to try to solicit information from him about a serial killer, who is abducting women, killing them, and skinning them, who’s been dubbed Buffalo Bill, in hopes that they can catch him before he kills anyone else. Lecter ends up respecting Starling, in a way, and cooperates, leading her to clues about this case and another. Starling ends up working on the case with Crawford, but things get tricky when a US senator’s daughter ends up getting abducted. Can they find Bill before he strikes again?
The Silence of the Lambs is one of my favorite movies, and now that I have read the book, I can say that they honestly did a really great job at staying true to the story. I will say, however, that I like Clarice Starling better in the book then in the movie; don’t get me wrong, I like Jodie Foster as Starling, but I found her character to be very one dimensional, there just didn’t seem to be much personality or development with her whereas in the book you see much more of her personality, she’s intelligent, and kind of snarky. You also see more of Jack Crawford. I don’t remember them ever mentioning Crawford’s wife in the movie, but in the book, and also if you are familiar with the TV show Hannibal, she is very ill and dying; which leads, of course, to a bit of a distraction for him during the case. They stayed very true to the story line with both Hannibal Lecter and Buffalo Bill in the movie as well. Hannibal Lecter is one of my all time favorite characters ever, and they pretty much copied him from the book to the movie.
I definitely loved this book, but I feel like it is one of those stories that translates slightly better as a movie, so I think I kind of like the movie slightly more. There are certain aspects of the book I like better of course, like I said I like Clarice’s character slightly more in the book, and there are certain scenes that are described in more depth but they did such a great job with the movie, that I really think I like it just the slightest bit more. I am very excited to read the remainder of the books in the series, the only other book I had read was Hannibal Rising, so I still have to read Red Dragon and Hannibal, which I plan to do in the near future. I do have to say, Hannibal Rising is a fantastic origin story, that really shows you what exactly led Hannibal down the path he ended up traveling and I loved it; if you haven’t read it, I highly recommend it, same with Silence here, if you have not yet read this novel, do it!