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Undone by Karin Slaughter

I started reading Karin Slaughter's Grant county series a few years ago and quickly fell in love with the characters of Dr. Sara Linton, coroner to rural Grant county and her husband, Jeffrey Tolliver, the local police chief. Slaughter says that in these novels she tells the story of Sara. While this may be true, I've noticed that for novels that are supposed to tell Sara's story, the focus of the story is often on Tolliver and his crime solving rather than Sara. The same is true for the latest (highly anticipated) installment of the series, which picks up Sara's story three years later.

Undone is the latest installment of Karin Slaughter's Grant County series that features a cross-over with the characters of Will Trent and Faith Mitchell, Georgia Bureau of Investigation agents that were featured in a previous novel by Slaughter. I can only hope this means that we'll see more of Trent, Mitchell, and Dr. Sara Linton sharing the pages of new installments. (The next Slaughter book is due out in 2010 and I can hardly wait for it; luckily, I have her other two stand alone novels to help hold me over until then.)

In the suburban backwoods of Atlanta, Georgia, a woman, who has been brutally tortured, runs out into the road; as if this woman has not suffered enough, she is struck by an oncoming car. She is brought to Grady Hospital's emergency room where Dr. Sara Linton treats her. Georgia Bureau of Investigation agents Will Trent and Faith Mitchell catch the case (or more accurately, wrest it from the jurisdiction of the ignorant, local police authorities). Before the night is done, Trent is searching the same woods from whence the woman came for the place where she was kept and tortured. Soon it becomes apparent that the woman was not the only one being held captive and that there is another woman out there somewhere in those woods. Then another woman, matching the description of physical features of the first victim, is abducted in broad daylight in front of her son from the parking lot of an Atlanta grocery store. Now Trent and his partner, Mitchell, must race against time to find the third victim, figure out if and how the victims might be connected, and track down the murderer before it's too late to save the last woman that has been abducted.

Is the recent abductee really connected to the torture victims or is it a separate case? Trent and Mitchell must contend with a turf war between the GBI and the local cops on the case in addition to a case that yields few leads.

In addition to being a talented writer, Slaughter also has a gift for creating powerfully and vividly drawn characters. Slaughter graphically portrays Linton's grief over a brutal, personal tragedy suffered three years prior that the reader feels Linton's pain over the loss. I will also be reading the previous novel that featured the characters of Trent and Mitchell. In short, this book was extremely hard to put down and when I was away from it, I was wishing I was at home reading it.

I highly recommend you read this book --or any book by Karin Slaughter. It is available here at the Matthews Public Library; it is also available upon request from Annville Free Library, Myerstown Community Library, and Palmyra Public Library.

--Reviewed by Ms. Angie


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