Cover image for A faint cold fear
A faint cold fear
Slaughter, Karin, 1971-
Personal Author:
First edition.
Publication Information:
New York : William Morrow, [2003]

Physical Description:
346 pages ; 24 cm
Sara Linton, medical examiner in the small town of Heartsdale, Georgia, is called out to an apparent suicide on the local college campus.
Geographic Term:

Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Central Library FICTION Adult Fiction Central Library
Alden Ewell Free Library FICTION Adult Fiction Mystery/Suspense
Concord Library FICTION Adult Fiction Open Shelf
Eggertsville-Snyder Library FICTION Adult Fiction Open Shelf
Elma Library FICTION Adult Fiction Open Shelf
Grand Island Library FICTION Adult Fiction Open Shelf
Lackawanna Library FICTION Adult Fiction Mystery/Suspense
Lancaster Library FICTION Adult Fiction Open Shelf
Orchard Park Library FICTION Adult Fiction Open Shelf
Riverside Branch Library FICTION Adult Fiction Open Shelf
Williamsville Library FICTION Adult Fiction Mystery/Suspense

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Sara Linton, medical examiner in the small town of Heartsdale, GA, is called out to an apparent suicide on the local college campus. The mutilated body provides little in the way of clues -- and the college authorities are eager to avoid a scandal -- but for Sara and police chief Jeffrey Tolliver, things don't add up.

Two more suspicious suicides follow, and a young woman is brutally attacked. For Sara, the violence strikes far too close to home. And as Jeffrey pursues the sadistic killer, he discovers that ex-police detective Lena Adams, now a security guard on campus, may be in possession of crucial information. But, bruised and angered by her expulsion from the force, Lena seems to be barely capable of protecting herself, let alone saving the next victim.

Author Notes

Karin Slaughter was born in Georgia on January 6, 1971. In 2001, she published her first novel, Blindsighted, which made the Dagger Award shortlist for Best Thriller Debut. She is the author of the Grant County series and the Will Trent series. Her stand-alone novels include Cop Town and Pretty Girls.

(Bowker Author Biography)

Reviews 3

Booklist Review

Slaughter returns with the third riveting entry in her Grant County series, in which her lead characters seem to suffer as much as the victims of the horrific crimes they investigate. County coroner Sara Linton arrives at a crime scene with her sister in tow. She consults with her ex-husband, Detectiveeffrey Tolliver, and Lena Adams, a former policewoman who jumped ship rather than undergo psychological counseling and is now employed as part of the security force for the local college. Within minutes, they determine that the victim jumped off a bridge and had recently slashed his wrists and undergone genital piercing. But their investigation is interrupted by a devastating discovery--Sara's heavily pregnant sister has been stabbed.effrey, Sara, and Lena join forces to determine whether the events are related, but their work is fraught with interpersonal difficulties, and their small town, once a safe haven, starts to seem like a claustrophobic and terrifying place. Slaughter knows how to ratchet up the psychological tension in a compelling plot with an unexpected twist. And Lena is a fascinating character, in thrall to a dark compulsion to play out her fears in unnerving sex games. Chilling and addictive reading. --Joanne Wilkinson Copyright 2003 Booklist

Publisher's Weekly Review

In the coldly captivating tradition of Cornwell and Reichs, Slaughter (Blindsighted; Kisscut) returns to Grant County, Ga., to offer a third installment in the adventures of smalltown pediatrician and part-time medical examiner Sara Linton. Called in to investigate the apparent suicide of a male Grant Tech student, Sara brings along her pregnant sister, Tessa, who wanders away from the scene and is brutally attacked. The distraught Sara must work side by side with her ex-husband, Det. Jeffrey Tolliver, whom she loves despite his past infidelity, but it's Lena Adams, formerly a cop and now a campus security guard, whose story the novel follows most closely. Still mourning the murder of her sister and recovering from her own torture and rape by the same man, Lena is looked on with suspicion by her ex-boss, Jeffrey. With reason: she's hiding a few key facts. The dead boy's mother is her therapist and Lena is involved with an abusive young man with a shady past. Campus gossip Richard Carter further confuses investigators; meanwhile, police discover the bodies of two more students, their deaths potentially suicides but more likely murder. Slaughter provides grisly variations on the themes of sibling rivalry, sexual abuse and campus politics in a story not for the faint of heart. Readers who can stomach gruesome details and like fitting together multiple stories of physical and psychological abuse will savor the way Slaughter can evoke sympathy for perverse, even criminal, behavior by tracing its origins, and those who make it through the complexities and the gore will be rewarded with a satisfyingly chilling ending. (Oct.) Forecast: A Faint Cold Fear was recently selected as the second International Book of the Month (Harlan Coben's No Second Chance was the first), so look for this thriller to hit bestseller lists both here and overseas. (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Library Journal Review

Medical examiner Sara Linton and police chief Jeffrey Tolliver are up against a bunch of suspicious campus suicides. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.



A Faint Cold Fear A Novel Chapter One Sara Linton stared at the entrance to the Dairy Queen, watching her very pregnant sister walk out with a cup of chocolate-covered ice cream in each hand. As Tessa crossed the parking lot, the wind picked up, and her purple dress rose above her knees. She struggled to keep the jumper down without spilling the ice cream, and Sara could hear her cursing as she got closer to the car. Sara tried not to laugh as she leaned over to open the door, asking, "Need help?" "No," Tessa said, wedging her body into the car. She settled in, handing Sara her ice cream. "And you can shut up laughing at me." Sara winced as her sister kicked off her sandals and propped her bare feet on the dashboard. The BMW 330i was less than two weeks old, and Tessa had already left a bag of Goobers to melt in the backseat and spilled an orange Fanta on the carpet in the front. Had Tessa not been nearly eight months pregnant, Sara would have strangled her. Sara asked, "What took you so long?" "I had to pee." "Again?" "No, I just like being in the bathroom at the damn Dairy Queen," Tessa snapped. She fanned her hand in front of her face. "Jesus, it's hot." Sara kept her mouth shut as she turned up the air-conditioning. As a doctor, she knew that Tessa was merely a victim of her own hormones, but there were times when Sara thought that the best thing for all concerned would be to lock Tessa in a box and not open it until they heard a baby crying. "That place was packed," Tessa managed around a mouthful of chocolate syrup. "Goddamn, shouldn't all those people be at church or something?" "Hm," Sara said. "The whole place was filthy. Look at this parking lot," Tessa said, swooping her spoon in the air. "People just dump their trash here and don't even care about who has to pick it up. Like they think the trash fairy's gonna do it or something." Sara murmured some words of agreement, eating her ice cream as Tessa continued a litany of complaints about everyone in the Dairy Queen, from the man who was talking on his cell phone to the woman who waited in line for ten minutes and then couldn't decide what she wanted when she got to the counter. After a while Sara zoned out, staring at the parking lot, thinking about the busy week she had ahead of her. Several years ago Sara had taken on the part-time job of county coroner to help buy out her retiring partner at the Heartsdale Children's Clinic, and lately Sara's work at the morgue was playing havoc with her schedule at the clinic. Normally the county job did not require much of Sara's time, but a court appearance had taken her out of the clinic for two days last week, and she was going to have to make up for it this week by putting in overtime. Increasingly, Sara's work at the morgue was infringing on clinic time, and she knew that in a couple of years she would have to make a choice between the two. When the time came, the decision would be a hard one. The medical examiner's job was a challenge, one Sara had sorely needed thirteen years ago when she had left Atlanta and moved back to Grant County. Part of her thought her brain would atrophy without the constant obstacles presented by forensic medicine. Still, there was something restorative about treating children, and Sara, who could not have children of her own, knew that she would miss the contact. She vacillated daily on which job was better. Generally, a bad day at one made the other look ideal. "Getting on up there!" Tessa screeched, loud enough to get Sara's attention. "I'm thirty-four, not fifty. What the hell kind of thing is that for a nurse to say to a pregnant woman?" Sara stared at her sister. "What?" "Have you heard a word I've said?" She tried to sound convincing. "Yes. Of course I have." Tessa frowned. "You're thinking about Jeffrey, aren't you?" Sara was surprised by the question. For once her ex-husband had been the last thing on her mind. "No." "Sara, don't lie to me," Tessa countered. "Everybody in town saw that sign girl up at the station Friday." "She was lettering the new police car," Sara answered, feeling a warm flush come to her cheeks. Tessa gave a disbelieving look. "Wasn't that his excuse the last time?" Sara did not answer. She could still remember the day she'd come home early from work to find Jeffrey in bed with the owner of the local sign shop. The whole Linton family was both amazed and irritated that Sara was dating Jeffrey again, and while Sara for the most part shared their sentiments, she felt incapable of making a clean break. Logic eluded her where Jeffrey was concerned. Tessa warned, "You just need to be careful with him. Don't let him get too comfortable." "I'm not an idiot." "Sometimes you are." "Well, you are, too," Sara shot back, feeling foolish even before the words came out of her mouth. But for the whir of the air-conditioning, the car was quiet. Finally Tessa offered, "You should've said, 'I know you are, but what am I?'" Sara wanted to laugh it off, but she was too irritated. "Tessie, it's none of your business." Tessa barked a loud laugh that rattled in Sara's ears. "Well, hell, honey, that's never stopped anybody before. I'm sure damn Marla Simms was on the phone before the little bitch even got out of her truck." "Don't call her that." Tessa waved her spoon in the air again ... A Faint Cold Fear A Novel . Copyright © by Karin Slaughter. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold. Excerpted from A Faint Cold Fear: A Novel by Karin Slaughter All rights reserved by the original copyright owners. Excerpts are provided for display purposes only and may not be reproduced, reprinted or distributed without the written permission of the publisher.

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