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All The Pretty Girls

(Taylor Jackson #1)

3.92  ·  Rating details ·  7,397 ratings  ·  555 reviews
Some secrets should stay buried.

When a local girl falls prey to a sadistic serial killer, Nashville Homicide Lieutenant Taylor Jackson and her lover, FBI profiler Dr. John Baldwin, find themselves in a joint investigation pursuing a vicious murderer. The Southern Strangler is slaughtering his way through the Southeast, leaving a gruesome memento at each crime scene -- the
Paperback, 411 pages
Published October 16th 2007 by Mira (first published January 1st 2007)
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3.92  · 
Rating details
 ·  7,397 ratings  ·  555 reviews

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Mary Beth *Traveling Sister*
Apr 03, 2017 rated it really liked it
This book is the first book in the Taylor Jackson Series.
I think this is a good start to the series. I loved the gritty ending and will be continuing this series.

Nashville Homicide Lieutenant Taylor Jackson is called to the scene of a homicide, where the body of a young woman, and hands, has been discovered. When a hand is found near the crime scene, DNA proves it doesn’t belong to the murdered woman but to another woman, whose body was found in another state. This brings the FBI into play, via
Dec 03, 2014 rated it did not like it
Recommends it for: Mystery fans
I am the wrong audience for this book.

It's not that Ellison can't craft a good story. She can. However, that story involves a lot of rape and murder, which is not something I find enjoyable to read about. In the course of this book, 9 females are murdered, about 20 are raped - including two 12-year-old twin girls and a 7-year-old girl.

It's not that I feel Ellison is writing rape porn. She writes rape in the correct way - offscreen. And she doesn't go into details. I don't feel like she is glori
Apr 02, 2018 rated it really liked it
It’s a pretty good read. I found it dragged in a few spots but the ending was satisfying. The characterizations were rather weak and since the book depended heavily on a multitude of character possibilities, it would've been more fair to the reader had they been written with more depth.
Jim Thomsen
Jul 05, 2010 rated it it was ok
It feels like I've read this same book about fifty times before. Police procedural? Check. Romance between cop and broodingly handsome FBI agent? Check. Escalating serial killer targeting attractive young women? Check. Mysterious tragedy in main character's past? Check. Above elements rendered in droningly unoriginal fashion? Check.

J.T. Ellison's debut is competent, well-crafted by genre standards ... and utterly colorless. The writer's voice is flat, wholly without affect, and actually becomes
Mar 19, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: robert-s-reads
Like a songwriter who writes his chorus before he discovers his verse, I rarely ever start a mystery/thriller series at the beginning. ALL THE PRETTY GIRLS is no exception to this rule; however, I was surprised by how much I enjoyed J.T. Ellison's debut novel. Sure, it’s easy to make the argument that this book was a bit formulaic at times, but unless you write literary fiction, what book isn’t? With only 20 plots (or 3 or 7 or 36, depending on whom you ask) to work with, it’s not like authors h ...more
CD {Boulder Blvd}
I read Field of Graves (Book #8) first and really liked it. It was actually a prequel to this book so going from book #8 to book#1 in the Taylor Jackson series actually worked quite well.

However, if I had read this book first, I may not have chosen to read the series. All the pretty girls has an interesting plot but I felt like the character development was poor (I relied significantly on Field of Graves), the pace was excruciatingly slow, and the plot felt all over the place. There was the majo
Sep 04, 2012 rated it did not like it
Shelves: fiction
After reading other reviews, i feel like i read a completely different book. The stereotypical characters just killed me from the very beginning; same as The Closer, James Patterson, etc. Blond cop, FBI boyfriend, BFFs w/ medical examiner, blah blah blah. I figured out the serial killer at the same time as the reporter. And was there an editor? I found myself rewriting some parts as i read them and inserting my own, more appropriate, vocab words in several places. I have never done that before. ...more
Rebecca McNutt
Jan 03, 2016 rated it really liked it
This was a great mystery novel, and although it does get too technical at times, for the most part it was intriguing and near-impossible to put down.
Kris - My Novelesque Life
(Taylor Jackson: #1)
Written by J.T. Ellison
2007; Mira/Harlequin (411 Pages)
Genre: suspense, mystery, series, fiction, serial killers


I have been wanting to read All the Pretty Girls since it first came out.  I love the suspense books that Mira publishing puts out, so I bought this one without even reading the synopsis.  Many moons later, I actually got to it when a friend suggested a buddy read.

Taylor Jackson, a Homicide Lieutenant in Nashville, is keeping her
♥ Ashleigh ♥  contrary to popular belief i'm not actually mad!
at the start of the book i found the characters to be lacking something.... not sure what but it made them boring to read about, but towards the end i started warming up to a couple of them.

this story was told from a mixture of POVs an a 3rd person narrator at times which made it pretty intense and gave the book decent depth and we got a little looksie into all the characters mind - which i thought was pretty cool.

the gore was decent, it didnt go over-board with it which i highly appreciate but
Vicki Willis
Nov 24, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: z-2017
I don't know how I went so long without starting this series. This book was fast paced and kept me on the edge of my seat. The characters were great and I can't wait to read more of their stories. Needless to say, I will be continuing with book 2.
Jul 12, 2008 rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2008

This was the strangest book I have read in a while. I am not usually picky when it comes to police procedurals (whether the author gets them right or not) but there were a couple of glaring ones that just about made me want to quit the book. One was when Taylor was discussing with fellow officers about the best approach to telling the media about Whitney's death. Now what pissed me off was that there was no way this would EVER happen before NOK was notified.

This was the most gla
Jul 10, 2017 rated it liked it
All The Pretty Girls (Taylor Jackson, #1)
by J.T. Ellison
Romantic Suspense / Mystery / Thriller

Pretty disappointed with this one. The writing style was flat and storyline didn't grab my attention. Just when things started to get interesting, there was a switch of pov and it started to drag again. The characters lacked depth and I could not connect with any of them. Expected more from this story but it fell flat. Nothing new nor suprising. There are much better books in this genre.
Nov 13, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This was my first time reading a JT Ellison book and I was not disappointed. Taylor is a rough, tough Lieutenant for Nashville homicide. Her current case is that of serial rapist who comes to her town to commit his wicked crime. Taylor gets to team up with her boy toy, Baldwin, to track and bring this killer to justice before he disappears. Awesome read! Defiantly recommend!!
Jan 14, 2012 rated it did not like it
Shelves: crime-modern
c2007. Thrillers are not normally my genre of choice - but it was **personally** recommended to me by GR so I obediently checked it out. Oh, so bland, unoriginal and I am not even sure if it was a thriller. I am getting very tired of uber attractive (but self deprecating), haunted, long blonde haired heroines. And another cop falling in love with FBI colleague - does this ever happen or is it like the old Mills and Boon chestnut of doctors and nurses? The comment on the front cover is a quote by ...more
Darcia Helle
Oct 17, 2009 rated it it was amazing
This is J.T. Ellison's first novel, though you'd never know it. Ellison writes likes she's got a string of bestsellers behind her.

I found the characters interesting and believable, with little human quirks that brought them to life. The plot kept me guessing and turning pages. While this was a story about tracking a serial killer, there was not the usual blood and gore that tends to come with this genre. There was also not a lot of cursing. Ellison holds the reader's attention with character dev
Debbie Belair
I loved this book, great characters. I hope to read more of this series. If you love thrillers, you'll like this one.
Kaytee Cobb
Really well put together thriller, if a bit gory and violent (yes, I *know*.... It's a thriller). I followed along almost exactly with the way the author wants you to believe things are going to play out, and therefore thought I knew whodunit, but was wrong, and then was right, and then was still surprised. All without feeling like she had played me for a fool. Lieutenant Taylor Jackson is a great character to root for. I'm a fan.
"'No, please don’t.'

Hear these words, and dream of hell."

That quote is more interesting than the entire novel. I'm nodding off a I'm typing this right now.

Girls have been dying in the South. Taylor Jackson and her boyfriend John Baldwin don't know why or how or who, but they're determined to find out.

And.... that's it folks.

Honestly, this book was absolutely nothing new. At first I thought it was because I might be just a tad burned out with mystery/thrillers since I've been reading so man
With a high body count, gory details and some added intrigue, this debut novel has a quite accomplished feel to it. It is a fast-paced and exciting thriller, and one that has a distinctly “series” feel to it. In fact, it almost seems like a mid-series novel with the way that Ellison so effortlessly incorporates many of the characters’ thorough backstories into the story. These glimmers into an exciting past make the present all the more engaging.

And though the main plotline is rather predictable
Oct 08, 2011 rated it it was ok
I thought this book was just OK. It took more than half of it to become interesting enough to really want to continue with it, but at the same time that point was where it became totally predictable and I saw the end coming. There was only one thing I didn't guess right away but I really wouldn't recommend it to anyone else to read. It took me over 2 weeks to get through it and for a short paperback, that is a lot of time.
Feb 19, 2017 rated it it was ok
It was an okay read. I wasn't impressed as much as I thought I would be as the story sounded great. It seemed to get started off with a bang, but then it just fizzled out for me and I became bored with it. Two stars for effort on this one.
Awesome! I LOVE these characters! I’m on a great roll this year & I’m SO glad to have discovered this series. So good, I’m moving on to the next book: 14.

Thanks J.T. Ellison for such a great strong woman character & a unique profiler!
Dee Sauter
Jul 23, 2017 rated it it was ok
This book was an experience, and not in a good way. Before I say the bad I will say the plot kept me reading, so the basic concept of a murderer killing in one state and dropping the body, sans hands, in another was pretty good. But, as I read the book I kept thinking that maybe this was the middle of a series. The author keeps referring to things that have happened in Sheriff Jackson's past that me as a reader has no frame of reference.
The characters are not fleshed out leaving them as cardb
Michael Sherer
Aug 19, 2012 rated it really liked it
It's not hard to see why J.T. Ellison is such a popular writer. Solid prose, action that propels the story from one page to the next, a strong, empathetic and likable heroine, all salted with just the right touch of romance make ALL THE PRETTY GIRLS another terrific entry in the Taylor Jackson thriller series.

Here Jackson is drawn into a serial murder case from a number of different directions. Taylor went to school with the TV news reporter who's in contact with the killer and the reporter's tw
Apr 22, 2012 rated it liked it
Shelves: library
I heard the J.T was a great author so I gave her a shot. I thought the beginning of the story was slow and it did not hold my interest very well and it took me a long time to get through it. By the middle of the book, I was interested, the pieces of the puzzle made sense and the flow of the book was finally going. I was really worried about the pace of this book since it was supposed to be a thriller and I was not yet “thrilled” in the least until about the middle of the book. I realize the auth ...more
I thought the murder case, while graphic, was extremely interesting. About halfway through the book, I had my suspects down to two and the author does a great job of providing relevant clues that give you a shot at figuring it out. The case work was presented without being overly procedural and was interesting.

This being the first of the Taylor Jackson series, I expected more in the way of character development and definition. There are a lot of details about the main characters but the book lac
Mar 22, 2018 rated it really liked it
It started a bit slow for me, but the second half had a great pace and I ended up enjoying it more than I thought I would.

Homicide Lieutenant Taylor Jackson and FBI profiler John Baldwin are on the hunt for a serial killer. Known as the Southern Strangler, he abducts young women, kills them and cuts off their hands. Then he dumps the bodies in a different state. And he is escalating, hardly giving anybody time to stop him.

What could be the motive?

Well, other than the fact that the story felt a l
Sheila Beaumont
Jan 09, 2011 rated it it was amazing
I loved this exciting, nearly unputdownable mystery, which is both a police procedural and a serial-killer thriller. Plenty of suspense, interesting characters, and one twist after another. I did guess whodunit pretty early on, but that didn't lessen my enjoyment at all. A real pleasure to read!
bookslovereaders Steph
Apr 19, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-2017
I do love to read a good crime novel and this just got the right spot!

Thrilling and keeps you guessing who the killer is right until the end. Throw in a love interest and other police cases and it keeps you hooked from the start.
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Bookworm Bitches : October 2011: All The Pretty Girls 56 237 Nov 25, 2017 03:28PM  
Linda Howard Book...: This topic has been closed to new comments. July's Non-Linda BOTM-All the Pretty Girls by JT Ellison 14 11 Jul 30, 2017 10:17PM  
Goodreads Librari...: ISBN and Title mismatch 3 18 Aug 04, 2013 10:19AM  
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J.T. Ellison began her career as a presidential appointee in the White House, where a nuclear physicist taught her how to obsess over travel itineraries and make a seriously good pot of Earl Grey, spawning both her love of loose leaf and a desire for control of her own destiny. Jaded by the political climate in D.C., she made her way back to her first love, creative writing. More than 20 novels la ...more

Other books in the series

Taylor Jackson (8 books)
  • 14 (Taylor Jackson, #2)
  • Judas Kiss (Taylor Jackson, #3)
  • The Cold Room (Taylor Jackson, #4)
  • The Immortals (Taylor Jackson, #5)
  • So Close the Hand of Death (Taylor Jackson, #6)
  • Where All the Dead Lie (Taylor Jackson, #7)
  • Field of Graves (Taylor Jackson, #8)
“Sam grinned. “Probably an acrotomophiliac. You know, less is more.” Taylor wrinkled her brow. “What the hell does that mean? It doesn’t sound good.” “Means he’s sexually attracted to amputees.” 1 likes
“She was autodidactic, and when she mentioned that, most of the college kids didn’t even know what it meant.” 0 likes
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