Short Stories Challenge – Busted by Karin Slaughter (stand-alone)

Published November 26, 2014 by bibliobeth


What’s it all about?:

From Karin Slaughter comes a fast and furious tale in which no one is quite who they seem. This electrifying eBook novella featuring Will Trent is a prequel to Slaughter’s upcoming novel,Unseen.

Detective Will Trent is standing in a Georgia convenience store, waiting on an obstinate Icee frozen drink machine. To the surveillance cameras and bored staff of the Lil’ Dixie Gas-n-Go, however, Will appears to be someone very different—the menacing ex-con Bill Black. Going undercover as Bill, the Georgia Bureau of Investigation agent is about to infiltrate the most corrupt town in the most corrupt county in the new American South. But first: his Icee.

Everything changes in one horrific instant, as all hell breaks loose at the Lil’ Dixie. A cop is shot. A bag of cash goes flying across the floor. A young woman disappears while a killer takes off in a battered pick-up truck. Within seconds, Will is in pursuit.

What did I think?:

Karin Slaughter is one of my must-read authors and I’ve enjoyed the recent eBook shorts she’s written. Busted, like Snatched involves one of my favourite characters from the author’s Will Trent series i.e. Will Trent! This novella is also a sort of prequel to Karin’s next full novel in the series, Unseen which was a pleasant surprise for me. So for anyone who hasn’t read any of the series, Will Trent is a detective with the Georgia Bureau of Investigation, a job which he loves but his usual role has been put on the back burner as he is required to go undercover as Bill Black, hardened criminal with a few colourful arrests and convictions on his record. When the story opens he is at a convenience store, waiting for what seems like an age just to get some frozen Coke.

Life never goes that smoothly for Will Trent however, and before he knows it he is caught up in an armed robbery on the store. As the perp demands money while brandishing his gun, Will’s cop instincts kick into overdrive and while he at first takes the sensible option and dials 911, he also ends up getting fully involved in the incident while trying to restrain the perp. Of course, there’s always one in the wings waiting in a getaway car and the situation turns quite messy as a policeman who had also been in the store as a customer is shot. Will himself ends up in a high speed chase for the second perp on his motorbike, earning him quite a few injuries in the process. The bad guy ends up a lot worse off though you may be pleased to hear as Will chooses quite a novel way to bring him down.

Will’s injuries are nothing compared to the roasting he gets from his boss, the fiesty Amanda Byrne as she arrives on the crime scene with Will’s partner, Faith. After all, he is meant to be undercover and look at the attention he’s brought to himself. Naughty Will. As they all try to make sense of the crime not everything is as it seems and there are a lot of things that just don’t add up. For starters, where has the bag of cash gone? What happened to the young woman behind the counter? And why do the video camera images show a probable third perp?

Karin Slaughter has a gift for creating fantastic characters and very readable, thrilling fiction. Busted was another easy to read but adrenaline coated novella shrouded with enough mystery, action and the author’s wonderful sense of humour to please her current fans and perhaps entice a few more for the Slaughter army? I enjoyed as always trying to figure out what was going on (I never get it right!) and submerging myself in Will Trent’s world once again. Out of the novellas I have read so far it isn’t my favourite – that award goes to the fabulous The Blessing of Brokenness but it’s still a great read and can also be enjoyed as a stand alone if you’ve never read any Slaughter before.

Would I recommend it?:

But of course!

Star rating (out of 5):


NEXT SHORT STORY: Nocturne by Kazuo Ishiguro from the collection Nocturnes: Five Stories Of Music And Nightfall

3 comments on “Short Stories Challenge – Busted by Karin Slaughter (stand-alone)

  • I used to read Karin Slaughter religiously, until she kind of stopped doing the Sara Linton books (SPOILER – was devastated when her husband Jeffrey (?) was killed!) and Will Trent became more of her main character – having said that, though, I do have Cop Town here, which appealed because of the 70s setting – must read it soon! I’ve a suspicion Will and Sara may appear in some of the same books (do they?) but I couldn’t take to him (sorry!) Another problem is her titles are all fairly similar, so I’m really not sure when I stopped reading her books…maybe I’ll have to download samples of a few from Amazon, see what ones seem familiar…that could work…She’s a hugely talented writer.

    • I know, I couldn’t believe that myself! I actually sent her a message telling her off (in a nice way!) on her website. She never replied though… hmmm. I wasn’t sure of Will at first but it’s surprising how he grows on you and now I think he’s great. Would love to know what you think of Cop Town.

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