Silence of the lambs is the least dramatic Harris novel as at no time does any character have to sacrifice anything ever
In Red Dragon Will Graham and Dolarhyde both had to sacrifice their relationships for what they though to be ‘the greater good’
In Hannibal Clarice has to sacrifice her career and dream, Margot has to sacrifice her family/morals, Hannibal has to sacrifice his own safety,
In Hannibal Rising Hannibal has to sacrifice his family, his relationship, and his chance at a happy normal life.
Nobody fucking sacrifices anything in SOTL, sure Starling is threatened with not graduating, bad press, etc. but in the end there are no consequences for her choices or anyone else’s choices. And I don’t mean in like a Margot Verger 'the ends justify the means’ starling never has to choose to give something up entirely, and she never realizes that the choices she made has caused X person to leave her life