In addition to being a very good short story on its own, Karin Slaughter’s Last Breath also happens to be the perfect introduction to the author’s upcoming novel, The Good Daughter.
Last Breath familiarizes readers with Charlotte “Charlie” Quinn, a young lawyer working in Pikeville, Georgia. Charlie will be the main character in The Good Daughter, so this allows readers to learn about her backstory before jumping into that novel.
In Last Breath, Charlie agrees to take on the case of Florabama Faulkner, a teenager who wishes to emancipate herself from her grandparents. Flora is worried that her custodians are improperly using the money she had hoped to use to fund her college education and asks Charlie to intervene on her behalf.
Charlie is also dealing with Dexter Black, a previous client who needs more legal help even though he hasn’t yet paid his prior bill. Meanwhile, the biggest bombshell in Charlie’s life is that all evidence is pointing to the fact that she may be pregnant – something she and her husband, Ben, decided they would wait on until they were more financially stable.
Since this is a short story, these things get wrapped up fairly quickly, though in some cases, not in the way readers might expect. But this glimpse of Charlie Quinn will have readers anxious to see where life takes her in the future. The Good Daughter is set thirteen years after Last Breath, but the tragic backstory about how Charlie’s family was shattered – the fallout of which readers hear about in this short story – takes center stage in the novel. Certainly, each of these works are successful on their own, but the combination of the two will reward readers with a more fully immersive experience.
Last Breath is a great way to test the waters with Karin Slaughter’s writing style, but be prepared, you are probably going to be pre-ordering The Good Daughter immediately upon turning the last page of this story.
Disclaimer: A digital galley of this title were provided to BOLO Books by the publisher. No review was promised and the above is an unbiased review of the novel.