Karin Slaughter is the New York Times and #1 internationally bestselling author of fourteen thrillers, including Unseen, Criminal, Fallen, Broken, Undone, Fractured, Beyond Reach, Triptych, Faithless, and the e-original short stories “Snatched” and “Busted.” She is a native of Georgia.
From the Trade Paperback edition.
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Excerpt from book:
Detective Lena Adams winced as she pulled off her T-shirt. She took her police badge out of her pocket, along with her flashlight and an extra clip for her Glock, and tossed them all onto the dresser. The time on her phone showed it was almost midnight. Lena had rolled out of bed eighteen hours ago and now all she wanted to do was fall back in. Not that she’d done that much lately. For the past four days, just about every waking hour had been wasted sitting at a conference room table answering questions she’d answered the day before and the day before that—navigating the usual bullshit that came from having to justify your actions to Internal Affairs.
“Who led the raid into the house?”
“What intelligence were you acting on?”
“What did you expect to find?”
The internal investigator for the Macon Police Department had the dour, lifeless personality of a career pencil pusher. Every day, the woman showed up dressed in the same style black skirt and white blouse, an outfit that seemed more appropriate for greeting diners at an Olive Garden. She nodded a lot, frowned even more as she took notes. When Lena didn’t answer quickly, she’d check the tape recorder to make sure it was picking up the silences.
Lena was certain the questions were designed to provoke an outburst. The first day, she had been so numb that she’d just answered truthfully in the hope that it would soon be over. The second and third days, she’d been less forthcoming, her level of irritation rising with each passing minute. Today, she had finally exploded, which seemed exactly what the woman had been waiting for.
“What do you think I expected to find, you miserable bitch?”
If only Lena hadn’t found it. If only she could take a razor and slice the images out of her brain. They haunted her. They flickered into her vision like an old movie every time she blinked. They filled her with a constant, unrelenting sorrow.
Lena started to rub her eyes, then thought better of it. Six days had passed since she’d led her team on the raid, but her body was still a walking reminder of what had happened. The bruise fingering its way across her nose and underneath her left eye had turned a urine-yellow. The three stitches holding together the cut in her scalp itched like a rash.
Then there were the things that no one could see—Lena’s bruised tailbone. Her aching back and knees. The roil in her stomach every time she thought about what she’d discovered in that desolate house in the woods.
Four dead bodies. One man still in the hospital. Another who would never wear the badge again. Not to mention the terrible memory she would probably end up taking to her grave.
Tears came into Lena’s eyes. She bit her lip, fighting the urge to let the grief have its way. She was exhausted. The week had been hard. Hell, the last three weeks had been hard. But it was over now. All of it was over. Lena was safe. She would keep her job. The rat squad investigator had scurried back to her hole. Lena was finally home where no one could stare at her, question her, probe and prod her. It wasn’t just Internal Affairs. Everyone wanted to know what the raid had been like, what Lena had found in that dark, dank basement.
And Lena wanted nothi
“Slaughter’s most powerful book to date . . . No one writes like Slaughter. . . . Her words fairly growl on paper but yet her descriptions of relationships are tear inducing. This may make her an anomaly but she is the best damn anomaly writing books today. Make sure you read Unseen.”—The Huffington PostFrom the Hardcover edition.
“Compelling . . . [Slaughter] balances a complex plot with believable twists while sensitively exploring her realistic characters’ emotions and problems.”—South Florida Sun-Sentinel
“An emotional roller coaster ride . . . fast-paced and edge-of-your seat . . . Slaughter is brilliant.”—Wichita Falls Times Record News
“Superb and emotionally wrenching . . . The despicable nature of the crimes being investigated only serves to enhance Will’s innate goodness and humanity. Current series fans will be delighted, and newcomers to Slaughter’s work will find a new obsession.”—Library Journal
“Slaughter plunges readers into the action from the get-go with her electrifying ability to write suspenseful, riveting confrontations between cops and criminals, all while deepening the backstories of her longtime series leads. Another intense read, on multiple levels, from the ever-reliable Slaughter.”—Booklist
“Tense and densely plotted . . . The twisted plot and shocking reveals remind readers why Slaughter remains a dominant voice in crime fiction.”—Publishers Weekly