Reading "The Good Daughter" by Karin Slaughter is like finding a nugget of gold after slogging through acres of mud. It's that good.
Slaughter's narrative grabs the reader from the first few pages. The story revolves around two sisters, Charlotte and Samantha (Charlie and Sam). Almost immediately, the reader learns about the horrible tragedy that tears apart their family, resulting in the death of their mother. Their family will never again be the same, and neither will Sam and Charlie's relationship.
Twenty-eight years later, fate conspires to bring the remaining family together in Pikeville, the small Southern town where they lived and grew up. Charlie has become an attorney, like her father. Sam has also become an attorney, but very much unlike her father and sister. She lives in New York.
All three remaining members of the Quinn family have their secrets, their regrets, and their nightmares. Slaughter's rendition of the main characters is accomplished with three unique individuals -- all of them with their quirks and foibles -- whose reactions and background make the storyline unfold to its ultimate conclusion. Not one of the main characters is perfect, nor are any completely imperfect, reflecting a truth about life.
Slaughter manages to create a book that is part character study, part mystery, part action, and part family study. The writing and the vocabulary are both beautifully rendered, and the humor is wry.
Readers will become attached to the characters, and the pages will seem to turn almost of their own volition inexorably to the end.
This reviewer highly recommends "The Good Daughter" for all those who are looking for a book that will completely absorb them and keep them reading.
Please note: This review is based on the final, hardcover book provided by William Morrow, the publisher, for review purposes.