I had few expectations of The Verdict when I began reading. I knew it was a legal mystery (always a draw for me) and that the protagonist was going to be part of the defense team for a man he hates (that was the hook in the description). But I'd read nothing else by the author or any reviews of the book, so other than knowing those things, it was a total mystery (ha! sorry for the pun). Turns out it's going to be one of my best of the year. Don't you love when that happens?
So here's the deal: Terry Flynt works as a legal clerk in a large London firm. He's relatively new and so far the hardest thing about his job is dealing with Arabella (aka Adolf), a fellow clerk and office bully. That relationship gets worse when Terry is asked to assist on a huge criminal case. A millionaire has been arrested for the murder of a woman found in his hotel suite and he's hired Terry's law firm. If Terry does a good job on the case, he has a shot at a paralegal position and to have his law school tuition paid for by the firm. A no brainer, right?
But here's the kicker: The defendent is Vernon James. Terry grew up with Vernon in a working-class neighborhood and until college, the two were best friends. Then Vernon betrayed him and Terry's life went to hell. So how does he help defend a man he loathes? A man he's pretty convinced is guilty? And if he does, how does he keep his bosses from knowing his connection to Vernon?
I flew through reading this one and though it's a long one (~500 pgs.), I wished it didn't have to end. As Terry is drawn deeper into Vernon's troubles he has to deal with office politics, hidden schemes and perhaps danger to his own life. This one worked for me in every way. I'll consider it an early Christmas gift to myself....more
A fascinating mystery that looks backwards and forwards.
Sociology professor Amelia Emmet is returning to teaching at Rothberg College after a 10-monthA fascinating mystery that looks backwards and forwards.
Sociology professor Amelia Emmet is returning to teaching at Rothberg College after a 10-month absence. The absence was not by choice. Ten months ago a young student shot her and then shot himself. She didn't know him and has no idea why he did it. But no one believes that. Why would Leo Lehane target her specifically? In the months that she has been slowly, painfully trying to gain a semblance of her old life, the speculation on campus has been running rampant. So her transition back into her job is not easy. Not least because she still has so many questions herself.
It is her connection with new graduate student, Nathaniel Barber, and a local reporter that give Amelia the push she needs to try and figure out just why she was attacked.
Suspenseful and well-written, this is a great debut....more
Wow. This is a truly edge-of-your-seat thriller and will certainly be one of my best reads this year, no question.
Charlotte Alton is a charming socialWow. This is a truly edge-of-your-seat thriller and will certainly be one of my best reads this year, no question.
Charlotte Alton is a charming socialite in the London scene, but once she gets behind closed doors she becomes Karla, a business woman who deals in information. Information that's hard or even illegal to obtain. Few people have seen Karla's face. One of the few is Simon Johanssen. And he's turned up after a two-year absence. But the information he wants this time around may just get him killed - something Charlotte/Karla would like to stop from happening if at all possible.
Simon is a hired gun. But his target this time is a prisoner in The Program. The Program is a prison set-up in an abandoned area of London. That part of the city has been walled in and made into a prisoner village, so-to-speak. To escape is impossible. To sneak someone in? That's the challenge facing Karla. Can she get Simon into one of the most dangerous places in the world? Does she want to?
Getting Simon in, and back out again!, isn't Karla's only concern. Some of her other informational endeavors are becoming complicated and while Simon is working on his end, she has a lot to do to keep all her own balls in the air. British intelligence is looking for her, as is the person who hired Simon.
I was genuinely anxious as I read this. In a totally great way. This in an incredible debut....more
Kick Lannigan was abducted at the age of six and rescued when she was eleven. In that time period she caOne Kick is the first in a new series by Cain.
Kick Lannigan was abducted at the age of six and rescued when she was eleven. In that time period she came to view her abuser as her "dad" and has had a hard time coming back from those terrible events. Now twenty-one, she has done everything possible to make sure she is never a victim again. Her major goal at this point is to find a way to help when other children go missing.
She gets an opportunity to help when John Bishop appears in her apartment. He's searching for a little boy who has been abducted, possibly by the someone in the same network that included Kick's abductor. He needs her memories and connections to find the boy. And as painful as it is for Kick, she jumps at the chance.
I really enjoyed this thriller and Kick is definitely a character I'll follow into another book. I did have a bit of an issue with Kick's reactions in a couple of sections. She's become an expert fighter, marksman, knife thrower, lock picker, etc. You name it, she's perfected her abilities so that she isn't a victim ever again. But in several situations all that goes by the wayside and she makes some foolish choices. Some of it I can accept because she is facing real situations and as much as someone might train, reality can throw them. But it happens more then once and made me give Kick a bit of side-eye.