by Karin Slaughter
This was another of those very hard to read books. I felt overwhelmed. Let me describe what I mean. I’ll set the stage by giving you a rundown of the back story of the book.
Claire and Lydia are sisters. Their older sister, Julia, went missing when they were young. That event devastated their family. Their dad was obsessed with finding Julia. The marriage ended. He committed suicide. Nothing was ever right.
Claire married Paul. Lydia says that she was raped by Paul. Claire didn’t believe her. This split the sisters.
At the beginning of Pretty Girls, Paul and Claire are making out in a dark alley. A man stabs Paul and tries to abduct Claire. She gets away. Paul dies. During the funeral Paul and Claire’s house is broken into. The burglars are scared away by the caterers. Claire needs Lydia’s help. They feel that something is wrong. The cops are acting strange. Why is the FBI agent there? What is so important on Paul’s computer? Why does his business partner need those work folders so badly? What is going on?
Claire finds horrible, realistic, brutal, snuff videos on Paul’s home computer. After that she doesn’t know who she can trust. Claire and Lydia feel threatened by everyone. They realize that the girls in the videos are actually being tortured and killed.
Hopefully you get an idea of how hard it was to read this book. I don’t like to think that there could possibility be an underground market for films like that. Real torture and murder, no special effects. Where people abduct and hold pretty girls. Then slowly, over a period of time, rape, torture and finally murder them for money.
Ms. Slaughter knows how to make me squirm. Her portrayal of two sisters coming together, trying to work out how to find a way out, was very believable. She is a talented thriller writer. This book may not be for everyone, but if you are up for it, it is one hell of a ride!
I give Pretty Girls 4 1/2 Stars out of 5, and a Big Thumbs Up! If you are ready for an intensely dark thriller, this should fit the bill.
By the way, the prequel short story Blonde Hair, Blue Eyes, that I reviewed previously (A Review of Blonde Hair, Blue Eyes by Karin Slaughter) does add something to the story, but isn’t necessary. It would be best if you read them back to back.
I received a Digital Review Copy from the publisher.
It’s been more than twenty years since Claire and Lydia last spoke. Claire is the glamorous trophy wife of an Atlanta millionaire; Lydia, a single mother dating an ex-con, struggles to make ends meet. But neither has recovered from the disappearance of their sister Julia two decades earlier—and the shocking murder of Claire’s husband brings the horror and heartbreak of the past roaring back into their lives.
The vanishing of a teenage girl and the killing of a middle-aged man, almost a quarter-century apart: What could connect them? As they form a wary truce, the surviving sisters unearth the secrets that destroyed their family all those years ago . . . and find the astonishing truth they least expected.
Hardcover: 416 pages
Publisher: William Morrow (September 29, 2015)
Product Dimensions: 6 x 1.3 x 9 inches
Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds
About the Author
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.