Wednesday, June 4, 2014
Review: Cop Town by Karin Slaughter
Karin Slaughter has been one of my favorite authors for some time now. Her Will Trent series has always placed her in a class all her own. Her gritty, descriptive, suspenseful crime novels make her a force to be reckoned with so it's no surprise that Cop Town, the first standalone novel, is as good as it is.
Maggie Lawson and Kate Murphy take center stage as two female officers for the Atlanta Police Department. Maggie comes from a family that eats, breathes, and dies by the blue. Although no one in her family is happy she's on the force, she can take care of her own. Her brother Jimmy, and uncle Terry, are on the force as well. They give her as much of a hard time as all the other animals... I mean men in blue.
Kate Murphy is the rookie officer who is barely managing her first day on the job when she partners up with Maggie. Kate decides to serve after her husband dies in Vietnam. At first she seems lost and unsure of herself, but eventually she discovers what she's made of.
Both women are investigating the death of Jimmy Lawson's partner Don Mosley. Someone has declared it open season on the APD. There have been seemingly random murders of officers while on duty which has turned the whole Atlanta Police Department on its head. They are out for blood and will not let this murderer have their day in court.
Maggie and Kate begin to investigate the latest murder of Don Mosley and begin piecing together the evidence and witness accounts. There is enough proving that Maggie's brother is hiding something and the murders may not have been so random after all.
Cop Town takes place during the 70s. Racism, homophobia, sexism and classism seems to permeate its way into the minds of every character. In some way, in some form, one person or another is faced with dealing with their own prejudices or ones thrown at them. Kate and Maggie battle not only the elements on the tough streets, but are constantly needing to prove themselves to their male counterparts. Kate is sexually harassed at least once every hour or so. I can't imagine what it was like for women who paved the way for current female police officers. Judging from this book they had a tough row to hoe.
Karin Slaughter writes a damn-good police procedural. She provides readers with great characters who have such depth I'd love to see them in future novels. (Please...maybe?) Both women trudge through the mud and find a whole lot more on the other side. I really enjoyed this journey with Maggie and Kate. Cop Town is a must read for all of Slaughter's fans. And for those living under a rock and haven't yet been acquainted her novels, make Cop Town your first. ****
Copy provided by Random House Publishing Group via Netgalley