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Extended Audio Sample Criminal, by Karin Slaughter Click for printable size audiobook cover
4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 4.00 (5,661 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Karin Slaughter Narrator: Kathleen Earl Publisher: Blackstone Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Related: The Will Trent Series Release Date:
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Karin Slaughter’s new thriller is an epic tale of love, loyalty, and murder that encompasses forty years, two chillingly similar murder cases, and a good man’s deepest secrets.

Will Trent is a brilliant agent with the Georgia Bureau of Investigation. Newly in love, he is beginning to put a difficult past behind him. Then a local college student goes missing, and Will is inexplicably kept off the case by his supervisor and mentor, deputy director Amanda Wagner. Will cannot fathom Amanda’s motivation, until the two of them literally collide in an abandoned orphanage they have both been drawn to for different reasons. Decades before­—when Will’s father was imprisoned for murder—this was his home…

Flash back nearly forty years: In the summer Will Trent was born, Amanda Wagner is taking her first steps in the boy’s club that is the Atlanta police department. One of her first cases is to investigate a brutal crime in one of the city’s worst neighborhoods. Amanda and her partner Evelyn are the only ones who seem to care if an arrest is ever made. Now the case that launched Amanda’s career has suddenly come back to life, and it is intertwined with the long-held mystery of Will’s birth and parentage.

Each will need to face down demons from the past if they are to prevent an even greater terror from being unleashed on Atlanta today.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “Karin Slaughter’s best yet by far: All her signature strengths are amplified a hundredfold by the past explaining the present. Reading this book was like watching a great athlete having a career year.”

    Lee Child

  • “With every page of this story the tension mounts…If you have a hunger for a rich and fulfilling novel then you owe it to yourself to pick up Criminal…Slaughter at her most visceral and gut-wrenching best.”

    Huffington Post

  • “Karin Slaughter proves she’s one of the best crime novelists at work today with Criminal. [She] weaves a rich tapestry of complex characters with a compelling mystery. Readers will feel emotionally attached to these characters, and their journey will both delight and surprise even the jaded suspense fan.”

    Associated Press

  • “Fascinating…Slaughter delivers another riveting, pulse-pounding crime novel.”

    Booklist (starred review)

  • “Slaughter’s tense fourth thriller to combine characters from her two crime series…seamlessly shifts between past and present.”

    Publishers Weekly

  • “A compelling and enjoyable listening experience. Confronted with a large cast of characters, Early manages to give each character a distinct voice without falling into caricature or cliché.”

    Publishers Weekly on the audiobook

  • “Special Agent Will Trent has to be one of the most fascinating suspense protagonists in recent memory…Criminal offers a look back at 1970s Southern culture (with all its gentility and warts), a dash of romance for its unlikely protagonist and a twist ending that few will see coming.”


  • “Early’s composed delivery sets in stark relief the horrors inflicted upon the 1975 victims…Early’s best performance is her vocal time travel from the youthful, determined Amanda to the gruff GBI agent she becomes, a narrating feat that also applies to her circle of stalwart sisters. Tension is fine tuned, and characters are subtly shaded in.”


  • “A jolting case that involves murders separated by forty years…explosive.”

    Kirkus Reviews

  • A New York Times Bestseller
  • A USA Today Bestseller
  • A San Francisco Chronicle Bestseller
  • A Publishers Weekly Bestseller
  • A Wall Street Journal Bestseller

Listener Opinions

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Bonnie | 2/18/2014

    " I usually really enjoy this author's books. I found this one difficult to follow. The changes from past to present were often confusing. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by Mirjam | 2/18/2014

    " I just love the writing style of this thriller. I was really drawn into it. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Karla Wieting | 2/5/2014

    " Because I hadn't read the previous few books in this series (only her earlier stuff), I got a bit lost in the beginning. I really enjoyed the flashbacks with Amanda and Evelyn but I remembered how much I didn't really like the Will Trent character and it's probably why I havent read many of the other novels. Even though he's had a tough life, etc, I think he's soft and needs to stand up for himself especially with his ex, Angie. He's a bit of a plodder and quite irritating. Having said that, after reading reviews of the previous novels, I may go back and read them just to fill in the blanks. I did like how the past and present collided and Slaughter did well with her research. I am just glad I wasn't a female police officer in the 1970s! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Karen V. | 1/12/2014

    " I liked the book although it took awhile for me to get the rhythm of the story. The jumps from present day to 1975 were a little hard to follow. It really got interesting at about the halfway point. Glad I stuck with it. There were a couple of interesting twists and surprises at the end. I would like to read more of Karin Slaughter's books. Took me less than two days to finish it. "

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