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The Silent History

By Ying Horowitz & Quinn LLC

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Honored by Apple as one of the Best Apps of 2012. Webby Awards winner. SXSW Interactive Awards finalist.

** The download includes access to Volume One, a 20-part serialization covering the first decade of the phenomenon. **

The Silent History is a groundbreaking innovation in digital fiction, the story of a generation of unusual children, told through serialization, collaboration, and exploration.

“Entirely revolutionary.” —Wired

“A landmark project that illuminates a possible future for e-book novels.” —LA Times

In the early years of the 21st century, doctors begin to notice more and more children being born with a strange condition: silence. No speech, no comprehension, and soon a complete lack of engagement with most human interaction. The kids are seen as not much more than empty vessels, and many are sent to orphanages and group homes — until a teacher at one of these facilities realizes that the children have developed enigmatic, powerful skills of their own.

Testimonials are presented in the form of oral histories told by characters directly affected by the condition — parents, teachers, doctors, cult leaders, faith healers, and government officials, with unexpected intersections and unifying narratives. The 120 Testimonials provide the central backbone of the story.

The Field Reports are short, site-specific accounts that deepen and expand the central narrative, written and edited in collaboration with the readers of the Testimonials. To access and comprehend a Field Report, the reader must be physically present in the location where the Report is set. Reports are deeply entwined with the particularities of their specific physical environments — the stains on the sidewalk, the view between the branches, a strangely ornate bannister, etc — so that the text and the actual setting support and enhance each other. Each of these reports can be read on its own, but they all interrelate and cohere within the larger narrative.

The project is the result of a unique collaboration between the former managing editor of McSweeney’s (Eli Horowitz), award-winning authors (Kevin Moffett and Matthew Derby), Wired magazine’s “Most Wired Storyteller” (Russell Quinn), and contributors on five continents.

"Exquisitely designed… The overall effect is one of total immersion."
—Boston Globe

"A book-app chimera with the weight and flow of a good novel and the open-ended world-making potential of a collaborative game. … A revelation."

"One of the most talked-about new experiments."
—NY Times

"Absolutely stunning… Brilliant. I am firmly hooked."

"The Silent History is both an experiment and a dramatic statement: what is possible when fiction and technology merge in a meaningful and innovative way?"

"Incredibly interesting."

"No interactive or electronic book in existence has ever come close to the creativity or the uniqueness or the altogether newness of The Silent History."

"Will change your reading experience forever."

What's New in Version 1.5

+ Fixed problem introduced in version 1.4, where app would sometimes crash if launched without an internet connection
+ Important Volume 6 adjustments!


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Customer Reviews

Love the concept and story but...

I love the concept of this different way of storytelling and am enjoying the characters and storyline as the plot slowly moves forward through the years. However, while I appreciate the IDEA of the location-based field reports, I absolutely hate that there are no such reports anywhere near my area (the South in the US) and that I will never be able to travel to any places where they do exist due to my being disabled. I would be willing to pay an additional fee to gain access to the field reports. I do understand how that defeats the authors' original intentions for the reader to be fully immersed in the book by being in those exact same places where the field reports were written. But I have enough of an imagination as an avid reader and believe that I and other not-able-to-travel readers can still fully appreciate and enjoy the additional stories told through the field reports. And, because the authors thus far have remained adamant about NOT allowing off-site access to the field reports, I can give this app only 4 stars instead of the 5 it truly deserves for its ingenious creativity and innovation in storytelling.

Innovative and Addicting

The authors of this novel have created something unique. Wrapped in a beautiful interface is a medical mystery that reveals itself through first hand accounts. The story in itself is enough to keep you coming back, but they've also added another twist. You can discover field reports in your area that give you more insight into what's happening, making this novel into an interactive treasure hunt.

I encourage others to read and experience what the creators have put together and I hope they make more sagas like this one.

Just Wow

This was one of those finds I didn't expect to really draw me in and now I'm hooked. It's like this new reality but still a believable progression without pushing too hard or not enough. I have found myself looking for and imagining how I would deal in these silent groups and it's a completely remarkable experience. A very highly recommended piece and probably a favorite for a long time to come.

The Silent History
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This app is designed for both iPhone and iPad
  • $1.99
  • Category: Books
  • Updated:
  • Version: 1.5
  • Size: 46.4 MB
  • Language: English
  • Seller:
Rated 12+ for the following:
  • Infrequent/Mild Profanity or Crude Humor
  • Infrequent/Mild Alcohol, Tobacco, or Drug Use or References

Compatibility: Requires iOS 5.0 or later. Compatible with iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. This app is optimized for iPhone 5.

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Top In-App Purchases

  1. The Silent History, volumes 2-6$7.99
  2. The Silent History, volumes 1-6$8.99
  3. The Silent History, volume 1$1.99
  4. The Silent History, volume 2$2.99
  5. The Silent History, volumes 3-6$6.99
  6. The Silent History, volume 3$2.99
  7. The Silent History, volume 4$2.99
  8. The Silent History, volumes 5-6$4.99
  9. The Silent History, volumes 4-6$5.99