It's been eleven years since Gota has seen Kosmos, yet she still finds herself fantasizing about their intimate year together in Paris. Now it's 1999 and, working as a journalist for a Toronto travel magazine, she hears about a film festival in Sarajevo, where she knows Kosmos will be with his theatre company. She takes the assignment to investigate the fallout of the Bosnian war — and to reconnect with the love of her life.
But when they are reunited, she finds a man, and a country, altered beyond belief or recognition. Sitting in a small café, Kosmos introduces Gota to the new woman in his life, Edina. While Gota treads the precarious terrain of her evolving connection to Kosmos, she and Edina forge an unexpected bond. A lawyer and a force to be reckoned with, Edina exposes the sexual violence that she and thousands of others survived. Suddenly, a trip fueled by long-lost love becomes a passionate fight for justice: Gota is determined to tell their stories and will stop at nothing to make their voices heard. Before long, she finds her life entwined with the community of women and travels with them to The Hague to confront their abusers. The events Gota covers — and the stories she hears — will change her life forever.
Written in Kim Echlin's masterfully luminescent prose, Speak, Silence weaves together the experiences of a resilient sisterhood and tells the story of the real-life trial that would come to shape history. In a heart-wrenching tale of shame and loss and a beautiful illustration of power and love, Echlin explores what it means to speak out against the very people who would do anything to silence you. (From Hamish Hamilton)
Speak, Silence is available in March 2021.
Kim Echlin is a writer who lives in Toronto. Her other novels include Elephant Winter, Dagmar's Daughter, The Disappeared and Under the Visible Life. The Disappeared was shortlisted for the 2009 Scotiabank Giller Prize.