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Broken: A Novel [Hardcover]

A book by Karin Slaughter.

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"Broken hearted melody, won't you bring her back to me."

  • Nov 12, 2010
Rating:
+4
The title of this novel could represent the status of the characters and the situations that they find themselves in.

Officer Lena Adams is called to the scene where a suicide note is left at a lover's lane by Lake Grant. When divers recover the victim's body, Lena sees a stab wound at the back of the woman's neck and knows that she's dealing with a murder.

The girl is identified as Allison Spooner, a college student and waitress at a nearby restaurant.

Lena accompanies acting chief Frank Wallace, to Allison's apartment. They are met by ambitious detective Brad Stevens. When Brad looks in the apartment window, he sees a person who they believe is Allison's boyfriend, Tommy Brakam. He has a mask on and is holding a knife.

In the attempt to question him, Brad is stabbed by Tommy and Tommy is than caught and jailed.

While other officers accompany Brad to the hospital, Tommy commits suicide in jail. In examining his background we see that he is a flawed, broken character. He was only nineteen years old and had an i.q. of around eighty.

Dr. Sara Linton is home for Thanksgiving. She was married to the former chief of police and was the town coroner. She's asked to come to the jail to speak to Tommy, before police knew he had committed suicide. When Sara finds Tommy dead and learns that Lena was Tommy's interrogator, Sara believes that this is another case of Lena not doing her job and Sara calls in special agent Will Trent, to investigate a case of possible police neglect.

Lena's flaw is that she suffers from guilt over the former chief's death. Although she had been cleared of wrongdoing, she still feels responsible.

Acting chief Wallace's flaw is that he is an alcoholic and heading for a breakdown.

Sara's flaw is that she cannot forgive Lena and wants her to pay for causing Sara's husband's death.

The police investigate Allison's murder and Tommy's suicide. In so doing, there is an interesting portrayal of town and the university. I enjoyed the story and feel that it was contemporary and could have been lifted off the pages of the daily newspaper of a city that has a large university.

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November 12, 2010
Broken and murders? Well, not my idea of optimistic approach to the world problems now. I'd describe those two words with regard to the state of the economy now, esp. with regard to that of the recent Feds' decision for QE2. Everyone is questioning if the Feds know how to fix a broken system and/or is it trying to have its neighbors & trading partners shed blood instead!
 
November 12, 2010
Nice review, Michael. My parents recently purchase FAITHLESS for me. It'll be my first Karin Slaughter novel and I'm looking forward to reading it.
 
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More Broken: A Novel reviews
review by . November 01, 2010
Who do you trust?
Karin Slaughter merges characters from her earlier novels in Broken, when Special Agent Will Trent is called to Grant County to investigate the suicide of a jailed murder suspect. The local cops have arrested young Tommy Braham for the killing of a local college student found in a lake, in what looks like a crime of passion. Tommy's confessed, but slits his own wrists in his cell, and Dr. Sara Linton, former county medical examiner who is in town to visit her family, suspects that there's …
review by . July 12, 2010
Former coroner Sara Linton hasn't visited her hometown in Grant County, Georgia since the death of her husband, Police Chief Jeffrey Tolliver. Almost four years later, she returns, planning to spend Thanksgiving with her family. Shortly thereafter, Tommy Braham, a mentally disabled young man, is arrested for the murder of Allison Spooner and asks that Sara, his former pediatrician, visit him. When Sara arrives at the jail, it appears Tommy has committed suicide. Sara, who blames the arresting …
review by . July 10, 2010
Author Karin Slaughter has a great readable style of writing, and keeps a busy plot moving well. Broken: A Novel is the first of her books that I've read, and since these characters have been featured in several of her other books, I had some trouble understanding what was going on at times. The book DOES stand on its own (with a lot of explanatory passages required), but I'm sure it would read more plausibly if read in sequence. I understand that "Broken" brings together characters from two separate …
review by . June 07, 2010
Disclaimer: A free copy of this book was received from Amazon Vine in exchange for an honest review.      In Broken, Karin Slaughter brings Sara Linton back to Grant County for the first time in the three and a half years since her husband Jeffrey Tolliver was killed. Sara has come back to spend Thanksgiving with her family but is called in by Acting Police Chief Frank Frank Wallace to go to the jail to talk to a prisoner who used to be one of Sara's patients. The prisoner …
review by . May 27, 2010
Former coroner Sara Linton hasn't visited her hometown in Grant County, Georgia since the death of her husband, Police Chief Jeffrey Tolliver. Almost four years later, she returns, planning to spend Thanksgiving with her family. Shortly thereafter, Tommy Braham, a mentally disabled young man, is arrested for the murder of Allison Spooner and asks that Sara, his former pediatrician, visit him. When Sara arrives at the jail, it appears Tommy has committed suicide. Sara, who blames the arresting officer, …
About the reviewer
Mike Draper ()
Ranked #67
Michael A.Draper is a financial planner with Mass Mutual in North Haven, CT.   Married to Diana for 46 years, one son and daughter-in-law and two lovely granddaughters.      … more
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Karin Slaughter on Broken

For me, every novel begins with character rather than plot. I know something bad is going to happen, but the central question to every story I write is "how will my characters respond?" Over the years, I’ve certainly thrown some hard times at my Grant County characters. Jeffrey, Sara and Lena have changed a lot since Blindsighted, my first novel. They’ve seen hardship and adversity, grown together and grown apart. They have helped me explore the way crime can change not just people, but entire communities.

When I started writing about Will Trent in my Atlanta series, I wanted to take that exploration a step farther. As a special agent with the Georgia Bureau of Investigation, Will is generally called in when the local police either can’t handle or don’t want to deal with a case. Not only does he have to find the bad guy, he has to juggle the various egos already involved. This is certainly the situation in Broken, when Will is called into Grant County to investigate a possible suicide in police custody. He butts heads with Lena Adams and Frank Wallace, and uncovers a truth that most in the town do not want to see.

Bringing Will Trent into Sara Linton’s world was a fun challenge for me. With Undone, it was in many ways easy to put Sara in Atlanta. I live in the city, and the landscape is already painted for me. As a writer, I need only draw in the fine lines. Dropping Will into Grant County was a different...

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Details

ISBN-10: 0385341970
ISBN-13: 978-0385341974
Author: Karin Slaughter
Genre: Mystery & Thrillers
Publisher: Delacorte Press
First to Review

"Tense Thriller"
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