Friday, July 13, 2007



Karin Slaughter

Date: 30 August, 2005   —   $16.50   —   Book

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Fiction, Mystery

Slaughter's local coroner and police chief stumble across a woman who was buried alive. Trouble is, she didn't die from the burying— she was poisoned. And this crime has all the earmarks of one that has been done before... with the intention that the victim lives. So Sara and Jeffrey have to determine just who of the local religious farm community is killing its members.

I tend to not recommend Slaughter. It's either a highly appropriate name or pseudonym, as her books are exceedingly violent, her characters come from badly broken or highly traumatic backgrounds, and they behave in self-destructive patterns.

There's no buts here. I read things like this, but then I read true crime renditions of serial killers. So understand that what I like is not always to most people's tastes.

One thing that I've noticed in Slaughter's work is a contempt for religion and conservatives. It doesn't come through very often— the religious mocking comes through the character voices, which given their histories is completely understandable. But when speaking of rural Georgia, the authorial voice makes comments such as "ruined by Reganomics" given as "of course" statements. Coupled with the mild contempt the characters hold religious folk in, we're given a picture of those benighted red-staters, who are steeped in folly...

Unlike the traumatized, unfaithful, seriously messed up and unhappy protagonists of the book. Uh-huh.

What I find really interesting is that Slaughter doesn't even realize that she's making that comparison. I can accept a serious argument in favor of one political viewpoint over another. It just bothers me when somebody is so unconcious that they are making an argument that they think it's just the way the world works. Serious writing flaw. Oh well.

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