Pretty Girls by Karin Slaughter
Sisters. Strangers. Survivors.
More than twenty years ago, Claire and Lydia’s teenaged sister Julia vanished without a trace. The two women have not spoken since, and now their lives could not be more different. Claire is the glamorous trophy wife of an Atlanta millionaire. Lydia, a single mother, dates an ex-con and struggles to make ends meet. But neither has recovered from the horror and heartbreak of their shared loss—a devastating wound that’s cruelly ripped open when Claire’s husband is killed.
The disappearance of a teenage girl and the murder of a middle-aged man, almost a quarter-century apart: what could connect them? Forming a wary truce, the surviving sisters look to the past to find the truth, unearthing the secrets that destroyed their family all those years ago . . . and uncovering the possibility of redemption, and revenge, where they least expect it.
Powerful, poignant, and utterly gripping, packed with indelible characters and unforgettable twists, Pretty Girls is a masterful thriller from one of the finest suspense writers working today.
This was my first book by Karin Slaughter, and it won’t be my last. Going into this book, I only knew that it was described as a dark psychological thriller. I had no idea just how dark and depraved it could be. Just a warning, there are descriptions of graphic violence.
This story was just brilliant. It focused on the lives of a family and how they dealt with the disappearance of a daughter / sister. When a loved one is taken away from you … stolen away from you, there is no guidebook to tell you how to behave. Will you rebel or turn to drugs or internalize everything or never escape the pain and devote your life to solving the mystery? I cannot fathom a person I love disappearing from my life and never having the answer of what happened to them. Would you want to know? No matter how horrible the story is … would you dig to find it?
Pretty Girls is told through the lens of the missing woman’s two sisters and letters from their father. It really broke my heart as twenty some years later this family is still dealing with the aftermath of Julia’s disappearance. The story really picks up when current events occur that make the past and present collide in shocking ways. After all these years, it looks as though the family may finally get the answer. However, the road to finding out what happened to Julia was outrageous and horrifying. It’s a real mystery thriller, and I was on the edge of my seat throughout most of the novel. My heart was racing and if I was a nail biter, I’d have none left!
In the end, I ached for these characters. I wanted to reach out and hug them and somehow take away their pain. I also wanted to kill the motherf-ing psychopath villain(s).
If you enjoy psychological thrillers and dark reads, this is the book for you!
P.S. Thank you so much to Elise for gifting this book to me!
About the Author
Karin Slaughter is the #1 internationally bestselling author of several novels, including the Grant County series. A long-time resident of Atlanta, she splits her time between the kitchen and the living room.