ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Karin Slaughter is one of the most popular and acclaimed storytellers around. Published in 120 countries with more than 35 million copies sold across the globe, she has nineteen published novels to her credit. Some of her works include the Grant County and the Will Trent series, as well as the Edgar-nominated Cop Town and the instant New York Times’ bestselling novels Pretty Girls, The Good Daughter, and Pieces of Her. Slaughter is the founder of the Save the Libraries project – a non-profit organization established to support libraries and library programming. A native of Georgia, Karin Slaughter lives in Atlanta. Her standalone novels Pieces of Her, The Good Daughter, and Cop Town are being adapted for film and television.
Some people are born with a hole inside them. They spend their lives trying to fill it. Sometimes it’s pills, sometimes it’s Jesus.
After two intense standalones, Slaughter brings back the regulars whose personal problems are just as dark, urgent, and potentially violent as those of the criminals they investigate. The story follows the murder of an ex-cop at an abandoned construction site. A murder that might also be linked to a very wealthy, very powerful and politically connected athlete who has all the money in the world to get scot-free; a man whom Will has already tried to put away on rape charges, and who has used his political and financial clout to get away with it. But, as with all of Slaughter’s books, this is just the tip of the iceberg.
Everyone familiar with Slaughter’s work knows that she can be counted on for violence, gore, and disturbing content. Although not as gruesome as Pretty Girls, The Kept Woman provides all of the above, without failing to deliver a side dish of softer material as well. What also stands out is the fact that the author has done thorough research into her plot lines to ensure that they are as realistic as possible.
The pace and structure of The Kept Woman are no less fantastic. For instance, we have ever-changing POV’s in the present – the post-crime scenario. Then, after about 200 pages, we jump back in time to the week before the crime, from another POV that was present for all the shady, criminal components. Once caught up, we flip back to the present to finish out strong. While this may sound mind-boggling, the narrative flows flawlessly from the first page to last.
The Kept Woman is a dark, gripping, cliffhanging, mind-bending psychological thriller about a tangled web built from secrets, lies, murder, and vengeance. The plot takes off from the prologue itself. This is one of those stories where readers have to try and remember the first chapter, for it comes back around toward the end of the book, albeit in a less cryptic manner. The book offers intense insights into the nature of loss and control, and how love can taint both.
Slaughter draws the readers in, leading them along a slippery slope that winds its way to a somewhat surprising ending. The novel is quite fast-paced, though it does slow down for a lengthy flashback scene that will connect the dots leading up to the crime. Slaughter excels at incorporating such high-tension, nerve-wracking situations into her plots. She then follows it up with actual investigation, which does not lead to where many will originally guess it might.
Kids like that didn’t live the lives they wanted. They survived the lives they had.
An impeccable characterization make The Kept Woman a really strong addition to Slaughter’s bestselling franchise. The novel is also a fun mystery for long-time fans, or even for readers who are new to the series. Her characters are phenomenal and very human. They are flawed, but this is primarily why they feel so real and believable. There are some characters we love, some we hate, and some we hate but secretly love. All of them, however, combine in a cocktail of high-intensity suspense that forces readers to turn the pages.
Slaughter is really good at making readers feel uncomfortable. Although it deserves a rating of 4.1, The Kept Woman is definitely not for the faint-hearted. The author’s mastery of dark and messy murders is there for all to see, and this is what makes this book a must-read. The only notes to this would be that it will probably be a more enriching experience if the book is read in continuation of the series. Also, Ameya would advise parents to give the book a go before deciding on whether or not it would be appropriate for their young ones to do the same.
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