‘Kisscut’ is the second book in Karin Slaughter’s Grant County series and this is definitely not a book for the faint of heart. The crimes in this story are completely sickening.
After their divorce, Jeffrey Tolliver (chief of police) and Sara Linton (paediatrician and coroner) have started seeing each other again. They are meeting at the local skating rink one Saturday evening when a series of shocking events starts to unfold. Teenager Jenny Weaver confronts another teenager Mark Patterson in the car park threatening to shoot him to put an end to things. Jeffrey is left with no choice but to shoot Jenny. Meanwhile, Sara discovers the dismembered remains of a newborn in the bathrooms.
It is when Sara carries out the post-mortem on Jenny that she gets an inkling of what Jenny was trying to put an end to. Jenny could not have been the mother as her abused and mutilated body proves. Sara is not sure how she could have had Jenny as a patient for years without realising that there was a problem. But who are the parents of the baby, and who has been abusing Jenny?
As Jeffrey and fellow officer Lena Adams continue to investigate, they start to uncover a network of paedophiles and a group of young victims who are too afraid and too traumatised to speak about what is going on.
Eventually they are led to the main perpetrators of the group who are absolutely not who I expected them to be.
There are not too many happy endings in this story. Mostly there is no easy way out for those involved.
Throughout the story, Lena Adams is on the verge of a breakdown. After losing her sister and being violently abused in the previous novel ‘Blindsighted’, it will take her a long time to recover. She shouldn’t be working as a cop but it is her only anchor.
Although sickening, this was an excellent novel and impossible to put down. Karin Slaughter is one of the most gripping authors I know (along with Mo Hayder). I approach her novels with a combination of anticipation and dread. The next book in the series is ‘A Faint Cold Fear’.
Book Published 2002