Cop Town by Karin Slaughter (Review #2)

Cop Town

Reviewed by Cy Hilterman

Atlanta Georgia in the time period of 1974, a time when the city was still very much a segregated city, including the police department. If you were black you knew you had to look the other way if a white cop came near you. You didn’t dare talk to them or try to give them some case information. If you were white you knew you had the blacks in your hand and they would do almost anything you requested, preferably nothing. This was true on the street or in the police headquarters. The Lawson family had its share of cops. Maggie was one of them along with brother Jimmy. When Jimmie’s partner was shot and died in the hospital after Jimmy carrying him to the ER, they knew it had been the fifth cop killed over a short period of time. After this incident, Maggie, family, and friends were very worried about Jimmy since no one had seen him since the death of his partner.

Kate Murphy always wanted to be a cop but she wasn’t sure of her decision since she had been hired. Her first day was now here and she was terrified as to whether she could do this job. A rookie was always given a hard time but especially if that rookie was a woman. She was “fitted” with a uniform many sizes too big including shoes. She had never thought of all the equipment that police wore on their belt and around their waist and top of the body. Of course she was frowned on at the first roll call and had a huge shock that the blacks had to have a curtain between the whites for dressing and locker space. Kate drew Maggie as her first partner. The first few days were torture for Kate, mentally and physically from all the equipment hurting various body parts, but she would not give up. She lumbered on while she learned, with every part of her body seemingly hurting from all the police equipment rubbing and bruising her body.

Kate did not hold much respect at first, even from her partner, Maggie, but Maggie soon found out that Kate, as pretty as she was, was not incapable of using her head and her body to physically pull off and mentally think well enough to assist Maggie. They eventually made a good team and even outdid their male counterparts in cases and being where they needed to be when those times came up. Another suspected problem crept into the Atlanta Police Force when some on the force were thought to be gay. This turned investigations into cases that had to be reopened.

I have read most of Karin Slaughter’s books and enjoyed them. This one is a stand-alone book with no connection to other stories of hers. I thoroughly enjoyed it. “Cop Town” is chock full of action with nary a pause in the action as controversial subjects are told. Readers that like action, crime, occasional sex, police inter-action, and characters you will probably remember will be delighted with “Cop Town”.


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