Saturday, August 28, 2021

Review - False Witness

  False Witness
Author:   Karin Slaughter
Publisher:   William Morrow
Genre:   Mystery/Thrillers
Format:   Kindle ARC
No. of pages:  512
Date of Publication:  July 20, 2021
Rating:   5 Stars


He saw what you did ... He knows who you are. The stunning new standalone from the no.1 international bestselling author


Leigh Coulton has worked hard to build what looks like a normal life. She has a good job as a defence attorney, a daughter doing well in school, and even her divorce is relatively civilised - her life is just as unremarkable as she'd always hoped it would be.


But Leigh's ordinary life masks a childhood which was far from average ... a childhood tarnished by secrets, broken by betrayal, and finally torn apart by a devastating act of violence.


Then a case lands on her desk - defending a wealthy man accused of rape. It's the highest profile case she's ever been given - a case which could transform her career, if she wins. But when she meets the accused, she realises that it's no coincidence that he's chosen her as his attorney. She knows him. And he knows her. More to the point, he knows what happened twenty years ago, and why Leigh has spent two decades running.


If she can't get him acquitted, she'll lose much more than the case. The only person who can help her is her younger, estranged sister Calli, the last person Leigh would ever want to ask for help. But suddenly she has no choice ... 

Leigh Collier may not have liked the cards she was dealt in life, but she has played them well. A successful defense attorney, a teen daughter Maddy, a decent divorce and plenty of cases to keep her occupied. However, her latest case is about to make her carefully built house of cards come toppling down. Leigh had a disturbing past. A past she had buried neatly and secretly away. With this new case - defending a man accused of rape - she could lose everything.

Something happened  in Leigh's life nearly two decades ago. Shockingly when she meets her newest client she immediately sees the connection to her long-held secret. If she does not get him acquitted, she will most certainly lose everything. Of that there is no doubt. One person could help her, and that is her estranged younger sister Calli. With very good reason, Leigh doesn't want to get Calli involved. However, needs must and Leigh is forced to contact her.

I became a Karin Slaughter fan just one year ago, and have read two dozen of her books, including her Will Trent and Grant County series.  I knew going in that they are going to be gritty. She doesn't pull any punches. This standalone novel is one such book. Leigh's past comes face-to-face with her present and the results are not pretty. Not by a long shot. This book gave me all the feels, forcing me to cycle through a gamut of emotions.  

Leigh and Callie are polar opposites. As mentioned, Leigh is an attorney. Conversely, Callie is a heroin addict. Different as night and day. Additionally, factor in Ms. Slaughter bringing Covid into the story by means of how some of us are living our best lives despite this terrible time in history. This was done in a seamless manner and in no way took anything away from this riveting, well-written story. 

It might be hard to imagine that this book - practically a tome at its over 500 pages - could be read in one sitting, but that is exactly what happened, as it was utterly compelling, difficult and painful at times with drama so intense that it could be described as breathtaking.

Many thanks to William Morrow and to NetGalley for this ARC for review. This is my honest opinion.


Published in 37 languages, with more than 35 million copies sold across the globe, her nineteen novels include the Grant County and Will Trent books, as well as the Edgar-nominated Cop Town and the instant New York Times bestselling novels Pretty Girls and The Good Daughter. Her most recent novel, The Last Widow, features Sara Linton and Will Trent. A native of Georgia, Karin currently lives in Atlanta. Her novels Cop Town, The Good Daughter, and Pieces of Her are all in development for film and television.

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