Will Trent Series, Book 8, by Karin Slaughter, William Morrow, September 2016.
*An e-galley was provided by William Morrow/HarperCollins and Edelweiss for an honest review.
The Kept Woman by Karin Slaughter
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
THE KEPT WOMAN , by Karin Slaughter, is the eighth book in her police procedural, Will Trent series and is filled with all kinds of twists and turns pivotal to good thrillers. In this intriguing story, Will and his Georgia Bureau of Investigation colleagues work with the Atlanta Police Department to solve the murder of a crooked ex-cop. The owner of the scene's abandoned building is a well-known sports figure who Will was unable to prove guilty in a recently closed case. The murder investigation turns personal when Will's estranged wife, Angie Polaski's, blood is found at the scene and their intertwined past and current troubles bubble to the surface, endangering his professional life and his relationship with medical examiner, Sara Linton.
I have to admit I've never read this author's work before, but I won't miss her future books. I was immediately pulled into the story and had no trouble understanding the pertinent backstory between all the main characters. I also found the characters realistic, each with flaws and interesting backgrounds.
Will is a physically and emotionally wounded man who has overcome his horrible upbringing with gentleness, routine and hard work to succeed in life. Angie is a crazy ex-cop, PI, and overall survivor from a childhood filled with all kinds of abuse. She flits in and out of Will's life creating havoc wherever she lands. She enjoys messing with Sara by breaking into her home and moving things about, sometimes leaving disturbing messages. Angie wants them to know that she'll always be around clinging to Will and directing anger towards Sara. Sara has weathered some difficult events of her own (though not as horrendous as Will and Angie) and suffers from self-doubts and confusion, both about herself and her relationship with Will. Even the less major characters are fleshed out with unique and complex lives.
Though the story is told in several points of view, the majority is through the eyes of Will, Angie and Sara. Keeping up with the POV changes was relatively easy, particularly since the different POVs were easily distinguished with spacing or chapters breaking them up.
I really enjoyed the author's use of humor to get the reader throughout the book. A scene in the dead ex-cop's house caused me to laugh out loud, and some of the characters' thoughts were very witty. But make no mistake, this is definitely a gritty police procedural and thriller, with all the gore and dirty primal survival techniques found in the lives of shady, abusive people.
The only thing keeping me from giving the novel five stars is the ending. I hate loose ends and though one major storyline is fleshed out, another important one is left hanging. Probably to kick off the next work in the series?
I would recommend THE KEPT WOMAN to anyone who likes police procedurals with a smattering of humor, stories of comeuppance, and mysteries with great twists and turns.
NOTE : The rather frank discussions of physical and sexual abuse within the story may not be suitable for anyone younger than 9th or 10th grades.
If You Like This Book, You May Like: Other books in the WILL TRENT SERIES by Karin Slaughter, TRACERS SERIES by Laura Griffin, MORGANS OF NASHVILLE and TEXAS RANGERS series by Mary Burton, FBI THRILLER BOOKS by Catherine Coulter, LUCY KINCAID NOVELS by Allison Brennan, DARKNESS by Karen Robards
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