Heart of a Killer
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Heart of a Killer

3.81 of 5 stars 3.81  ·  rating details  ·  805 ratings  ·  125 reviews
Jamie Wagner is a young lawyer who is happy to be flying under the radar at a large firm. It’s not that he isn’t smart. He is. It’s just that hard work, not to mention the whole legal thing, isn’t exactly his passion. Underachiever? A little. Content? Right up until the firm puts him on a case that turns his whole world upside down.

Sheryl Harrison has served four years of...more
Hardcover, 304 pages
Published February 14th 2012 by Minotaur Books (first published February 9th 2012)
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James Thane
Jamie Wagner is a young lawyer at a large firm on the fast track to nowhere, at least professionally. He knows that he's never going to make partner, which is okay by him because, while he's a really smart guy and a Harvard graduate, he's not all that ambitious. He's generally marking time and flying under the radar when the firm assigns him to a pro bono case.

Jamie's new client is Sheryl Harrison who confessed to the murder of her husband six years earlier and was convicted of the crime. She's...more
I liked his Andy Carpenter series, a lawyer with the Golden Retriever, Tara, & I have to give Rosenfelt a lot of credit for running a dog rescue operation while writing crime novels. This might be the best book I've listened to by him, a stand alone.

The main character is a rather lazy, directionless, dissatisfied lawyer, a drone. There are two main threads; a woman who wants to donate her heart to her daughter & a computer terrorist wreaking havoc. Both are very believable, give plenty o...more
Jeanette  "Astute Crabbist"
A guy who begins his author profile by saying "I am a novelist with 27 dogs" gets a chance to show me what he's got. For sure. The man has his priorities straight.

This was pretty good. 3.5 stars
What I found even more compelling than the heart donation dilemma was the "co-plot" reminding us of how truly vulnerable we are in this modern age where absolutely everything is run by computers.

Pamela Kramer
In 'Heart of a Killer,' David Rosenfelt combines his many talents -- writing great dialogue, plots with great twists, and a wry sense of humor -- to end up with a book that is difficult to put down.

The plot is unique. A woman convicted of murdering her husband wants to die so that she can donate her heart to her daughter, who will die without a heart transplant. Jamie Wagner is the unfortunate attorney who is handed the pro-bono (free) case by his employers.

Jamie doesn't feel so unfortunate when...more

I think that his may be,in my humble opinion, Mr. Rosenfelt's best. Heck, what a page turner. Each short chapter was thrilling with a cliff hanger sentence at the end of each. Interesting plot and wonderful character development,evoking empathy,sympathy,admiration,fear and loathing. A self proclaimed underachieving Harvard lawyer..a divorced police detective that is smart on the job and loving his ex wife off the job..the imprisoned client who may or may not have killed her mysterious husband Ch...more
I was really excited last year when I learned David Rosenfelt had a new book out. I've totally enjoyed the Andy Carpenter series. I was disappointed when I found out this new one was a stand alone. I was even more disappointed when I read the promo hype. It did not sound like I plot that I'd be interested in. Well, a year or so later I finally got around to it and I listened to it in less than 24 hours. [I do mostly audio books as I have a disability that makes it hard for me to hold books.] It...more
This started out a bit slow for me and I wasn't sure about it. But it didn't take long for me to get pulled into the story. There were a few twists and surprises at the end that I didn't see coming. Very interesting plots between the heart transplant, computer crimes and the connection between the two.
Diane S.
3.5 Stand alone but I love his characters. They are always humorous, self effacing and the new lawyer in this one is very likable. The plot is a very different type of case and it moves along swiftly. Strange to read a Rosenfelt book minus Golden Retrievers but I enjoyed this book.
Conceptually, this plot sounds like that of a Jodi Picoult book. Mother is serving a life sentence in jail for murdering her husband, wants to donate her heart to her terminally ill teenager and hires a lawyer to fight for her right to do so. The lawyer soon realizes that the state of New Jersey wants nothing to do with allowing this woman to commit suicide, nor will they execute her as she's not on death row. His only hope is getting her paroled, although this is complicated by the fact that th...more
Interesting premise. Jamie Wagner, a not-so-ambitious attorney who graduated from Harvard, is given a pro-bono case by his law firm. The case is to seek death for a prisoner at her own request: Sheryl Harrison who has served four years in prison for killing her abusive husband. Sheryl admitted it and took the guilty plea and now she wants to die. However, Sheryl wants to die because her fourteen year old daughter needs a heart transplant or will die soon. Sheryl wants to give her daughter her he...more
This is the first book by David Rosenfelt I have read / listened to that is not an Andy Carpenter book. It was very good; some of the same sarcastic wit that marks the Carpenter books(that I love) but this had a bigger plot with some interesting twists. The premise itself was engaging but I am not giving away anything. This was an audio listen for me and I can't say that I loved Todd Morgan,narrator; his attempts at female voices was -well I will just call it I'll advised at best.however he didn...more
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Paul Pessolano
“Heart of a Killer” by David Rosenfelt, published by Minotaur Books.

Category – Mystery/Thriller

Sheryl Harrison has confessed to murdering her husband. She has spent the last four year in prison, with another twenty-six years yet to serve.

Sheryl’s daughter, Karen, who is thirteen, has a congenital heart defect and to make matters worse has a rare blood type. It seems the only match for a replacement heart is Sheryl.

Jamie Wagner, a low on the rung attorney for a prestigious law firm, is given a ca...more
Four years ago, sitting next to her husband’s bloody body Sheryl Harrison confessed to his murder. It was an open and shut case as far as the police were concerned. Now Sheryl needs a lawyer to help her make amends. Enter Jamie Wagner … uninterested, unmotivated and definitely an underachiever at his corporate law offices. Sheryl’s was a mandatory pro bono case that landed on his desk. From the minute he met Sheryl he knew that the pieces did not quite fit. But now she was asking him to do the i...more
I've always enjoyed David Rosenfelt's books, especially the Andy Carpenter series. This book, "Heart of a Killer" introduces a new character, Jamie Wagner, a seemingly underachieving lawyer who isn't on the fast track to make partner. One day, Wagner is called in by upper management in his firm to do a pro-bono case. The client is a young woman (Sheryl) in prison for confessing to murdering her husband. But this case isn't about that murder - it's about her wanting to kill herself in order to do...more
Gloria Feit
Setting aside his popular and irreverent New Jersey attorney, Andy Carpenter, as a protagonist, David Rosenfelt has created a standalone based on another attorney, Jamie Wagner, a Harvard graduate who is a six-year associate at a leading Newark law firm. Basically unambitious, and no less a quipster than Andy, although his area of concentration is in contract law Jamie is handed a pro bono case he is ill-equipped to handle: a woman who wants to donate her heart to save her 14-year-old daughter’s...more
Shonna Froebel
Jamie Wagner is a young lawyer working at a large law firm. He plugs away at the contract law he is working on, but isn't inspired and know he isn't going anywhere there.
When he gets assigned a pro bono case and goes to meet his client, a woman incarcerated for killing her husband seven years earlier, his life changes. Sheryl Harrison is the client and her fourteen-year-old daughter Karen has been diagnosed with a congenital heart condition that will end her young life soon if she doesn't get a...more
Another tale of a spoiled rich kid who had to go to Harvard and become a lawyer to satisfy his overbearing parents. Doing the bare minimum to keep his job and wonder where he is headed next takes a backseat when this defense lawyer that has never tried a case takes on a pro bono case. All in all it was an ok read, showing new characters than previous books that I have read. As in most of the David Rosenfelt (fiction) books there is a plot twist at the very end, so don't stop when the story start...more
The author introduces a new lead character, Jamie Wagner, a less than enthusiastic contracts lawyer for a prominent blue blood law firm. Confident that he won't make partner Jamie spends more time thinking about life and what the future holds--little--when one of the senior partners dumps a pro bono case onto him. He is to interview a female prisoner who was convicted of murder years ago--a murder she confessed to--who has an unusual request. Following the initial meeting with the convict, Jamie...more
I really enjoyed this book. It has an unusual premise: a lawyer is sent to defend a woman in jail for killing her husband - a crime to which she confessed. But now her 14 year old daughter is dying of heart disease but a transplant would save her. Mom decides she wants to commit suicide to make sure her daughter gets the heart she needs. The truth: Mom didn't kill her husband but was so afraid of the man who controlled her that it was easier to confess. The lawyer, Jamie Wagner, isn't sure how t...more
People who like the Andy Carpenter series will like this one. The main character isn't quite as snarky as Andy, but he holds his own. The case is interesting: a woman who is imprisoned for murdering her husband wants to give her heart to her dying daughter. Things get a little nutty as the case unfolds, but it was entertaining, and it was fun to read about some new characters from David Rosenfelt.
Beth Kulp
I didn't know what to expect in the beginning, but I really enjoyed this book. Although, the audiobook version has a male narrator and he does the voices to the women- which is a bit comical.
A stand-alone from David Rosenefelt (the Andy Carpenter series)and while some of his trademarks have been retained - witty asides, etc. - this book deals with more violence, and quite deep ethical issues. Jamie is a young lawyer going nowhere fast when he is given a pro bono case of a woman in prison, who confessed to killing her husband - who now wants to commit suicide to provide her perfect-match heart for her daughter, who is dying. Lots of discussion, by various agency reps, etc of how the...more
Rosenfelt is so great with complex plots. In this stand alone book, he weaves together an impossible moral dilemma or two, an impossible love, an impossible danger, and a few ticking clocks. Some of the plot twists are predictable but most are not, and this short thriller is a real page turner. Thoroughly enjoyed it.
Nan Williams
It was a bit fantastic with a lot of extraneous side tracks which went no where. There was the guy who died from an overworking heart monitor as well as several others having their own chapters. It seemed like these events were going to work into the story, but they really didn't. I realize that he put them there to show the extent of our dependence on computers; but for me, it just didn't work. There were definitely holes in the story line, but all in all it was a good read and very enjoyable....more
Melissa Bailey
Very different topic and surprise ending. Loved it! Plus any author who has rescued 27 Golden Retrievers has my vote for anything he wants!
As you can see I do a lot of reading. Certain health issues keep me at home sometimes and I have always loved my books.

I may go out on a limb here and say this book, by far is the best book I have read this year. It had me on pins and needles from page one until the ending. Lots of times I peak at the ending if I get bored, but I knew I had to read this cover to cover.

This book has so many twists and turns it's like when you get lost on a dark country road at night and keep on looking for an exi...more
A very good book. Loved the story line. A woman, Karen, is in prison for mudering her husband, her daughter is dying from a failing heart. She wants to give her daughter her heart, but the state of NJ doesn't recognize the death penalty. She wants to petition the court to let her die in order to save her daughter. The penal system instead put her in solitary under a suicide watch. Her lawyer is trying to do his best to help, but the monkey wrench in the works is the dead husband had been into so...more
Julie Carter
Listened to this as an audiobook and found it very slow starting. Some of the story lines were pretty farfetched, and I felt like it was confusing switching between so many characters.
A little hard to follow in the beginning but well worth the pursuit.
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I am a novelist with 27 dogs.

I have gotten to this dubious position with absolutely no planning, and at no stage in my life could I have predicted it. But here I am.

My childhood was relentlessly normal. The middle of three brothers, loving parents, a middle-class home in Paterson, New Jersey. We played sports, studied sporadically. laughed around the dinner table, and generally had a good time. By...more
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