Karin Slaughter - Blonde Hair, Blue Eyes. (review here) That story was a prequel to her just released stand alone novel - Pretty Girls. The short story had me riveted, unable to stop reading until I finished.
The book? I truly couldn't put it down...... Let me fill you in.....
"More than twenty years ago, Claire and Lydia’s teen aged sister Julia vanished without a trace. The two women have not spoken since, and now their lives could not be more different. Claire is the glamorous trophy wife of an Atlanta millionaire. Lydia, a single mother, dates an ex-con and struggles to make ends meet. But neither has recovered from the horror and heartbreak of their shared loss—a devastating wound that's cruelly ripped open when Claire's husband is killed.
The disappearance of a teenage girl and the murder of a middle-aged man, almost a quarter-century apart: what could connect them? Forming a wary truce, the surviving sisters look to the past to find the truth, unearthing the secrets that destroyed their family all those years ago . . . and uncovering the possibility of redemption, and revenge, where they least expect it."
Claire and Lydia are well drawn characters. I was immediately drawn to Lydia, but never overly liked Claire. But, the relationships between the main characters is believable. Excerpts from their father Sam's journals are heartbreaking as he details his attempts over the years to find the missing Julia. The aftermath and effect of a crime on a family is deftly explored.
The premise is dark and disturbing, but it is Slaughter's writing that sucks the reader in and just never lets up. There's an undercurrent thrumming beneath the surface of Slaughter's prose, ominous and seriously frightening. No spoilers - but OMG - the twists and turns that she throws in are crazy. Who is telling the truth? Who can Lydia and Claire trust? Can they rely on each other? And the bad guy? Terrifying. Slaughter's portrayal of a psychopath had me looking sideways at library patrons all week.....
Lock the door, turn up the lights - and be prepared to stay up late. Fair warning to gentle readers - this one is not for you - there is graphic violence depicted as well as some very disturbing situations. Read an excerpt of Pretty Girls.
"Karin Slaughter is the #1 internationally bestselling author of more than a dozen novels, including the Will Trent and Grant County series and the instant New York Times bestseller Cop Town. There are more than 30 million copies of her books in print around the world." Find out more about Karin at her website and connect with her on Facebook. I've read every book Slaughter has written and she is absolutely one of my favourite crime writers. See what others on the TLC book tour thought. Full schedule can be found here.