In Pretty Girls, two estranged sisters come together to find the truth about two tragedies, twenty years apart, that devastated their lives. These tragic events stem from a cold-case crime, a very real issue in today’s society. “While I talk about social issues,” Slaughter said, “I always make sure that you can just read the book for fun. It’s not my job to educate anybody. There’s a lot of tension in the book, a lot of humor, some dark parts and an ending that I think will surprise a lot of people.”
Slaughter said she loves twists and turns in a story. She feels she created that with Pretty Girls and said, “I think this might be my twistiest, turniest book yet.”
Anytime siblings are thrown together in a story, the potential for twists and turns, as well as family drama, escalates. In Pretty Girls, Claire and Lydia create that tension. Slaughter said, “I identify most with Claire because I’m the youngest in my family, too—so of course I made her the smarter and prettier one.
I remember looking into the single, dark eye of a shark, then I felt a whack on the back of my head…
“I remember when my older sister came over to my house and I said I was hungry. She went into the kitchen and started to make me a sandwich. I just sat down and let her bang through my cabinets looking for things. When I thought about it later, I realized that no matter what you do in your adult life, if you are a little sister, you let your big sister make you a sandwich. And if you are a big sister, you are always going to be bossy and pushy and get to drive the car if you go anywhere.”
As a writer of psychological thrillers, Slaughter’s job is to make her readers feel fear. In an unintended case of “write what you know,” Slaughter found herself in a situation that could have gone very wrong. While visiting in Australia about five years ago, she went on a “swim with the sharks” ocean tour.
“It was a lot of fun, but I’m a small person, and I had problems with the weight belt because they had to keep loading it down. When it was time to float back up, I couldn’t manage to move the weights. The guide kind of ripped off part of the belt and I went straight up. I remember looking into the single, dark eye of a shark, then I felt a whack on the back of my head because he knocked my goggles off with his tail. Still worth the experience!”
Learn more about Karin Slaughter on her website at karinslaughter.com.