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Having just finished three of the best crime novels I've ever read, I never expected Cop Town to be as good, if not better than Mr Mercedes, Nesbo's The Son, and Bombproof.
Cop Town is a gritty story of the first police women to infiltrate the Atlanta PD in the early 70's. Someone called "the shooter" is killing cops at point blank range. The Atlanta PD of the 1970's was a force in turmoil with the integration of blacks and women into its ranks. No rock of bigotry is left unturned as the two main characters must dance around a smothering culture of racism, misogyny, homophobia to find the killer.
There are sophisticated and powerful family systems in place that greatly influence the police work of the two main characters. Karin Slaughter masterfully weaves them into the tale with a depth of emotion I've rarely found in any crime novel.
The reader, Kathleen Early is masterful, bringing every character to life and delivering the perfect pitch to every scene. This performance equals any effort of Ray Porter, Eduardo Ballerini and Will Patton.
Please read Cop Town. It is Slaughter's best work and puts her in rare company.
50 of 53 people found this review helpful
It's 1974 in Atlanta, Georgia, and the city is sharply divided by class and ethnicity. The police force is ruled by white men and women and minorities have to fight bigotry, sexism, and "good old boy" politics. Maggie Lawson comes from a poor family of cops, and has been on the force for a few years. Kate Murphy is a widowed Jewish from a rich family who is determined to make it in the world on her own. She has just joined the force, learning the job, while experiencing humiliation and teasing from most of the other policemen. Kate and Maggie find themselves teamed up against great odds as they branch out on their own to catch a serial police murderer.
Though I love Slaughter's writing, I found this book a little disconcerting. I can definitely believe the bigotry of those times, but there were no nice people at all in this book, including Maggie's family, and everyone else involved in this story. I really liked Kate the best, as she had what Jews call hutzpah - (Yiddish) unbelievable gall; insolence; audacity) , and great bravery in many difficult situations. Calling the serial killer " the fox" throughout the story until the reveal at the end, definitely ratcheted up the terror and suspense. Good story but not one I'd want to repeat very often. Still love Slaughter's writing though!!
The audio version added another sense of reality to the story that I definitely believe added a great deal to the emotional feeling of the story. Very well done!!
28 of 30 people found this review helpful