The Defense (Joseph Antonelli, #1)
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The Defense (Joseph Antonelli #1)

3.73 of 5 stars 3.73  ·  rating details  ·  200 ratings  ·  21 reviews
Defense attorney Joseph Antonelli is a stranger to defeat. There doesn't seem to be a case - no matter how implausible - that is beyond him. Until the phone rings one crisp April morning and Judge Leopold Rifkin asks Antonelli to defend Johnny Morel, a con man and convicted drug dealer accused of raping his twelve-year-old stepdaughter, Michelle. The prosecution's case is...more
Hardcover, 322 pages
Published October 15th 1997 by Henry Holt and Co.
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Wes Derby
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Robert Beveridge
D. W. Buffa, The Defense (Henry Holt, 1997)

It's hard to figure out which side of me is going to win the battle over how to review this book. One side of me wants to harp on the slowest beginning in history. The other side of me wants to harp on the fact that once I got past those opening chapters, I ended up reading most of the rest of it in one long marathon.

After reading the first two interminable chapters of this novel, I was sure that I was going to hate it. I'd give it the fifty page test,...more
Emily Bonn
Dec 02, 2007 Emily Bonn rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: high schools students and up
The Defense
His ten years as a defense attorney and his doctorate in political science have always played a major roles in all his books. When reading a book by D.W. Buffa you can always expect excitement with the logicality of his previous job of being a lawyer. A great and relatively new book by D.W. is the Defense. It is about a defense attorney Joseph Antonelli and a case that involves a stepfather and his 11 year-old step daughter who was supposedly raped by him. Joseph, who always wins his...more
Michael Alan Grapin
Joseph Antonelli is a superstar criminal defense attorney who has never lost a case. He's asked by his dear friend, Judge Leopold Rifkin, to defend a man accused of raping his 13 year old step daughter. After the acquittal of the client that he's all but certain is guilty, a complicated plot for revenge is set in motion with a conclusion that I found predictable yet very entertaining.
Debra Mack
Is a good story but moves too fast for me. Time passes too fast and the story doesn't develop quite like I wanted it to.
Christina Lerma-o'neal
The first half of the book takes way too long to set up the story but it still held my interest. The conclusion I was not expecting.
Kurt Young
Not a bad law-thriller-mystery, but not good either. I figured out the big "twist" 1/3rd of the way through, which left me reading, not with an eye towards discovery, but with an eye on how the author hid the news.

Also, in a world of CSI, Law and Order, and NCIS the final court case seemed underwhelming. Simple things that seem to occur in every murder investigation were just ignored in the story.

Interesting look at consequences of the legal system, though.
Joseph Antonelli is a defense attorney who has never lost a case. This is the story of about 15 years of his life and cases. He wins his cases but not without major challenges that test him severely. It's Buffa's first novel and I sure hope it isn't the last. The characters are fascinating. The start is good. The middle is a tad slow but when you get to the last third of the book, it's one of those you are totally sucked into.

First of the Buffa books I have read, though not first in the series.

Main character is defense lawyer Joseph Antonelli, who's stepped away fr. the law, due to past trauma, not clearly identified at start. It includes the suicide of a jdge he really liked/respected.

Mystery involves the wife of Antonelli's close friend, a black judge who's a Viet vet who lost a leg during combat.

Conrad Haas
Like the other Buffa books, the story line was very good and the courtroom scenes were very descriptive. Buffa does a nice job of explaining the law as a part of the narration of the characters in the story and that made everything more interesting.

A Christmas present from Dermot this year.
A book and author I knew nothing about when I got them.
A very pleasant surprise to find it such a good and unconventional read.
Not terrible as a story but not at all "thrilling". Lack of action to call it a thriller. Did not finish the last 50 pgs b/c I had to return it to the library.
Joe O'c
Very Good; Continuing character: Joe Antonelli; defense lawyer sets off a 10 year series of events when he defends a man guilty of abusing his step-daughter.
So-so legal thriller. Lots of time goes by during the course of the book and sometimes things seem disjointed though they all resolve in the end.
This wasn't my favorite legal thriller but it is one in which I never saw the end coming! I had figured out who did it but was still surprised.
I thoroughly enjoyed this. While the ending was somewhat predictable, the details were not. I look forward to reading more by this author.
If you like the legal suspense genre, such as John Grisham DW Buffa's are great novels for you.
Bonnie Kerr
I really liked this book, it has a such a surprise ending.
Jen Roe
I thought this was a good book
Very predictable.
Ellen marked it as to-read
Aug 10, 2014
Kylie Mann
Kylie Mann marked it as to-read
Jul 31, 2014
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Full name: Dudley W. Buffa
More about D.W. Buffa...
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