Release date: August 21, 2018
Publisher: William Morrow
What if the person you thought you knew best turns out to be someone you never knew at all?
Andrea Cooper knows everything about her mother Laura. She knows she’s spent her whole life in the small town of Gullaway Island; she knows she’s never had any more ambition than to live a quiet life as a pillar of the community; she knows she’s never kept a secret in her life.
But one day, a trip to the mall explodes into violence and Andrea suddenly sees a completely different side to Laura.
Twenty-four hours later, Laura is in hospital, shot by an intruder who’s spent thirty years trying to track her down. Now, Andrea must go on a desperate journey to follow the breadcrumbs of her mother’s past. If she can’t uncover the secrets hidden there, there may be no future for either of them.
Most of you already know that I’m a huge fan of Karin Slaughter, I’ve read all of her books and think she’s the queen of crime, one of the best writers around, so every year I’m always very excited to read her latest book. While I wasn’t disappointed with this one it is vastly different from her other books and not at all what I was expecting, so heads up to the #SlaughterSquad!
While there were several of the components in this book that I’ve come to expect from Slaughter the plot itself differed from her other work. It follows two timelines, one in the present day as Andy is thrust down a dark path after a shocking incident that exposes things about her mother, Laura that she never expected to see. It flips back to the eighties and follows a group of anarchists who are plotting to take down “the system” in order to rebuild in a better way. While I wouldn’t say I was disconnected from the past timeline I was definitely more invested in the current one, I think this may be because it wasn’t a standard case of cop versus killer, more of a group think mentality and how people can be convinced to commit acts they never would otherwise and the psychology behind it. The characterization for both sections was phenomenal as usual, but this book went even deeper into the characters personas than any of her other books and was truly the focus of the whole book.
KS is an outstanding writer and I’ll continue to be her biggest fan but I wanted to make everyone aware that this was missing some of her trademark grit. There definitely were some graphic, visceral scenes and glimpses of what I love about her style of writing, but overall this was a highly character driven novel that explores the complex relationship between a mother and daughter while still very much landing in the thriller genre. This is a book to savor, not one to binge, it’s still dark and full of rich depth and dimension but it definitely marks a slight detour from Slaughter’s previous work.
Pieces of Her in three words: Intricate, Multifaceted and Dangerous.
Overall rating: 4.5/5
Thanks to the publisher for my review copy.