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To Speak for the Dead (Jake Lassiter, #1)
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To Speak for the Dead (Jake Lassiter #1)

3.72 of 5 stars 3.72  ·  rating details  ·  1,362 ratings  ·  100 reviews




A doctor in love with his patient's wife...
A fatal mistake during surgery...
Accident? Malpractice? Or murder?

Defending a surgeon in a malpractice case, Jake Lassiter begins to suspect that his client is innocent of negligence...but guilty of murder.
Paperback, 400 pages
Published September 1st 1991 by Crimeline (first published July 1st 1990)
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Paul Levine
Aug 11, 2011 Paul Levine is currently reading it  ·  (Review from the author)  ·  review of another edition
My first novel. Chosen as one of the best mysteries of the year by the Los Angeles Times.

TO SPEAK FOR THE DEAD on Amazon Kindle here.

TO SPEAK FOR THE DEAD on Barnes & Noble Nook here.

“Move over Scott Turow. ‘To Speak for the Dead’ is courtroom drama at its very best.” – Larry King, USA Today

"Just the remedy for those who can't get enough Spenser and miss Travis McGee terribly." – St. Petersburg Times

"Jake Lassiter is attractive, funny, savvy, and brave." – Chicago Tribune

Sep 12, 2010 Ed rated it 1 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Crime fiction fans who have nothing else on their bookshelves.
This is another banal crime fiction offering disguised as a legal thriller by having a lawyer as the protagonist.

The plot is simple. Lawyer defends doctor in malpractice case. Victim turns out to have been murdered. The rest of the story has to do with the lawyer trying to catch the killer or killers, who are already known to anyone who has ever read a mystery story.

The characters are pure cardboard. The writing is infantile. I skipped large numbers of paragraphs as I plowed through the last ha
I'm always looking for good series to read, since I can read much faster than my favorite authors can write, even as a collective group. :D Don't remember how I found out about this one, but I enjoyed the first novel. It's set in S. Florida, where I grew up, and I always enjoy books more when I can picture the setting from firsthand experience. Lassiter was a flawed but sympathetic character. I thought the romance was a little overblown (like, who falls THAT much in love with someone they've jus ...more
This is my second novel from this guy. It is the second time I was impressed. Really a good bunch of characters, a fun courtroom drama, and just the right amount of "who done it". I am currently reading the second Jake Lassiter thriller.
Nancy Silk
"An Awesome Novel of Courtroom Games and Crime Solving"

In this highly suspenseful novel, Jake Lassiter is again in court to defend Doctor Roger Stanton, Chief Orthopedic Physician. Jake had been once a football player, an ex-public defender, now an attorney waiting for an answer from the person on the stand. It's a malpractice trial of Corrigan vs. Stanton. The man who died after the surgical procedure was Philip Corrigan, a very rich man. The lawsuit was filed by the wife of Philip Corrigan...
Levine, Paul - 1st in Jake Lassiter series

Miami trail lawyer Jake Lassiter, "ex-football player, ex-public defender, ex-a-lot-of-things," is defending Dr. Roger Salisbury, a surgeon and womanizer charged with malpractice in the death of wealth Philip Corrigan. But the dead man's daughter insists that the doctor and her sexy stepmother conspired to kill her father-and wants Lassiter to prove it.

Can Lassiter really defend his client for malpractice and builds a case again
Craig Pittman
A sterling beginning to a great series. You can sense the author, South Florida lawyer Paul Levine, feeling his way through his first novel but you can also see themes that he'll polish repeatedly for better results in later volumes: the wackiness of South Florida life, the contrast between the thuggish city and the colorful natural areas, the wild fights involving wildlife, the strange twists and turns that the law can take. The only real misstep here is the bizarre ending, which seems made for ...more
I'm not sure what to say about this book. I really like Levine's writing style I've read his series Solomon vs. Lord and the books are of my all time favorites, I was very happy when I found out that the author had another series.

To Speak for the Dead is the first book the author wrote and it's pretty good, but not as good as the last one.

I didn't know what to think and what to expect after I finished it. The end was very open. But as soon as I find the rest of the books I'm going to read them.
Although I don't read much nonfiction, this was an exception. I really enjoy the major character in this book, Jake Lassiter. I probably do much of my own legal work, as a result of reading so many books about underdogs who come out on top. Can't they overcome adversity? How will they do it? All literature has "learning lessons" in them, things we can take from the book and apply to our every day lives. Sometimes, if I'm in a "crisis" part of a book, I think to myself, "How's this guy going to g ...more
I recently read a much later book in this series, and as I enjoyed it, I decided to go back and see how the character first began. I was not disappointed. The courtroom drama scenes are entertaining and smart while the action/suspense component has plenty to keep you page turning. A very likeable protagonist, Jake Lassiter is an ex-pro football player (started at Penn State!)who played for Miami--and, indeed, a wonderful sense of Miami (and southern Florida in general) pervades the work: Levine ...more
Love this book and it kept my interest. Mr. Levine has created the character Jake Lassiter and each book in this series is about Jake, ex-pro football star now lawyer and all the things Jake gets himself involved in. The books keep me interested and I have found when reading I could picture the places described. I loved reading the series from beginning to current. I recommend this for those who like reading this type of book.
Two For One

Finish one good story and go right into a great sequel to the first one. Wow a mystery that wasn't difficult to figure out but an ending twist that I never would have figured out but thoroughly enjoyed. A novel I enjoyed with the bad guys getting their just desserts. The loss of a character I enjoyed due to her characteristics of a bull dog in never giving. Great writing Mr. Levine
Was a decent book with pretty good suspense but I had a hard time with mainly the love interest of the main character. The book didn't link these two well enough to make them as much of a pair as the storyline tries to imply. The ending really left me hanging and not in a good way. When I realized that was really the last page I sat there wondering, "what in the world?"
To Speak For The Dead (Jake Lassiter book 1)

Meet Jake Lassiter, defence attorney, who is the best for another great way to get out of trouble with the law. How he does that is a story that will have you turning pages to follow the plot. Thanks for letting us get to know Jake. Thanks for another great read.
Thomas Begley
Fantastic thriller!

Move aside Grisham and Turow. Paul Levine has created a first rate legal thriller. Part law, part sleuth, "To Speak For The Dead" is a fast paced read. The characters have depth, the story has twists and it's hard to put down once you start. I recommend this to anyone!
Shronda Baulwin carter
Hooked on Jake

This is the first time I read a Paul Levine book and I am a fan of his writing and the character of Jake. I had never heard of Paul but his book Bum Rap was one of the kindle first so I decided to pick it then when I seen that Jake is a series that involved suspense, the law and other things I like I was all in. To Speak For The Dead had me hooked from the first chapter and I found myself rooting for Jake and loving his Granny! This story had me rooting and yelling at Jake so many
A nice mix of courtroom drama and thriller
Aug 04, 2011 Maryann rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Folks who like legal mysteries with a touch of humor.
This was my first Jake Lassiter book and I found him to be an engaging character. I especially liked his irreverent approach to his job, as well as life in general. Secondary characters were equally engaging, although Granny Lassiter was a bit much. Most of the plot elements rang true, with the exception of some of the scenes with the dead body. Not being a lawyer, I can't say how true the courtroom scenes were, but I do know criminal law is showmanship, and that is something Lassiter does well. ...more
#1 in the Jake Lassiter series.

Miami lawyer Jake Lassiter defends Dr Roger Salisbury in a malpractice suit brought by the widow of wealthy Philip Corrigan. Corrigan's daughter Susan is convinced that Salisbury and her ex-stripper stepmother Melanie conspired to murder her father. With the help of retired coroner, Charlie Riggs, and his iconoclastic grandmother, Jake seeks the truth.
To Speak for the Dead is a fast-paced, suspenseful, legal thriller. This story moves like the wind, even the courtroom scenes. It is one of the few books I couldn't put down. The writing is superb.

The dialogue is great, very believable. The characters are 3-dimensional and whole. I love Jake's character. He's sharp, witty, caring, and tough, but he has a soft side too. The eccentric Charlie Riggs is an endearing, loveable character. He's someone I'd like to know. I didn't care too much for Grann
Kenneth Eade
A masterpiece of a legal thriller

Sharp, snarky and filled with chills as well As humor, this is a work of art by one of the best authors of this genre, who runs circles around John Grisham. The language is fantastic, the surprises never ending, up until the unexpected but satisfying surprise ending. A must read if you like legal novels.
george agle
There were a lot of dead to speak for this time.

This story was something of a trip to crazy town. And in the end that is the only comfort to be found. Jake Lasseter, humble and heroic, comes to love a woman so deeply involved in the murders it was a challenge to keep up. But it was so worth the effort. Hope you can read and enjoy this book soon. K Agle 7-27-15
Susan Moore
Small town lawyer defending a doctor.

Jake, with his granny and friends, defend a doctor twice. Wild story with intrigue and a little humor. Jake and company dig for all the facts, sometimes literally. Some nude dancing, twosomes, threesomes, and a very clever and manipulating woman. Not my usual type of thriller, but after I got into the story I really enjoyed it.
Really liked this book. I had read several of this author's Solomon vs. Lord series which are a lighter, more humorous read. Based on this book, his Jack Lassiter series has a more serious side, but still with touches of humor. I would best compare it favorably to Michael Connelly's Lincoln Lawyer books. The main character is Jake Lassiter, ex-pro football player turned attorney. It opens with Jake defending a doctor in a malpractice case. This case evolves into a murder case with Jake defending ...more
Lorin Cary
Paul Levine, To Speak for the Dead

Jake Lassiter is a defense lawyer in Miami, defending Dr. Roger Stoddard who is charged in a civil case with negligence in the treatment of a wealthy man. The tale is a tangled one, where the ethical Lassiter gradually uncovers more and more information. Working with a retired coroner, he tries to learn the mystery behind several murders. When his client is charged with murder the plot thickens. It’s a twisted story, which Levine handles adroitly. A former lawye
A Good Start

Good writing and memorable characters make for all sorts of possibilities. Was the doctor really not guilty of malpractice but guilty of murder? The bad guys get what they deserve... eventually. I look forward to reading more of Jake, Granny Jane, and Doctor Riggs.
This was my first Paul Levine book that introduced lawyer Jake Lassiter. I liked it. It is written in a breezy style and sometimes Jake makes a few too many self-deprecating jokes but it's easy to read. It's free with Amazon Prime on Kindle and there are a number of books continuing with Jake so they're definitely worth reading.
After reading a review on another book by this author I decided to read the first book in the series. Love the characters and the writing style. A few little discrepancies in this book, but overall a good read and I'm going to continue in the series.
Interesting Legal Thriller

While plot was not very believable, it was interesting enough to finish reading to see how it ended.......then it just ended. There must be a chapter missing or something????? Seriously, how does it end?
Deb Owens
Jake Lassiter #1. I enjoyed this as an escape-fiction read. The Jake Lassiter character is interesting but not especially well developed, IMO. I like it enough to look for additional books in the series.
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Paul Levine's newest legal thriller is BUM RAP, which brings together Jake Lassiter, Steve Solomon and Victoria Lord.

“The pages fly by and the laughs keep coming in this irresistible Florida romp. A delicious mix of thriller and comic crime novel.” – Booklist (starred review)

The author of 19 novels, Paul Levine won the John D. MacDonald fiction award and was nominated for the Edgar, Macavity, Int
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Other Books in the Series

Jake Lassiter (1 - 10 of 11 books)
  • Night Vision
  • False Dawn
  • Mortal Sin
  • Riptide (Jake Lassiter, #5)
  • Fool Me Twice
  • Flesh and Bones (Jake Lassiter Mystery)
  • Lassiter (Jake Lassiter, #8)
  • Last Chance Lassiter (Jake Lassiter #9)
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“I've never been disbarred, committed or convicted of moral turpitude, and the only time I was arrested, it was a case of mistaken identity...I didn't know the guy I hit was a cop.” 1 likes
“I stood there, 220 pounds of ex-football player, ex-public defender, ex-a-lot-of-things, leaning against the faded walnut rail of the witness stand, home to a million sweaty palms. "To Speak for the Dead" (The Jake Lassiter Series) 1 likes
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