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Conviction (Christopher Paget, #4)
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Conviction (Christopher Paget #4)

3.88  ·  Rating details ·  2,262 Ratings  ·  147 Reviews
When the body of nine-year old Thuy Sen is found in the San Francisco Bay, the police quickly charge Rennell and Payton Price with her grisly murder. A twelve-person jury, abetted by an incompetent defense lawyer, is nearly as quick to find the brothers guilty, and to sentence them both to die for their crimes.

Fifteen years later, overworked pro bono laywer Teresa Peralta
Paperback, 519 pages
Published October 25th 2005 by Ballantine Books (first published 2005)
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James Glass
Aug 24, 2015 rated it really liked it
I kept this book in the car and read it when I waited at the post office, restaurants, and other places where I had to wait in line.
Rennell Price has fifty-nine days left to live, after spending fifteen years on California's death row along with his brother, Payton. They're both charged with the rape and murder of a nine-year-old girl.
Terri Hatchett is an attorney working on the case to halt the execution of Rennell--a client she believes to be innocent of the crime.
Terri has to overcome a numbe
Allysia Murphy
Oct 26, 2011 rated it did not like it
Way too much detail. The book could have been half the size it was if they left out some of the court room and conference call details they included. They only reason I finished it is because that's the kind of person that I am but I am sorry I wasted my time with this one. And it ended the way you thought it would, which was disappointing.
Dec 14, 2016 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
My 4th RNP book, and probably my last. Conviction focuses on the late-stage death penalty legal process, which according to Patterson in the Afterword is actually more complicated and byzantine in real life than it is in his work of fiction. RNP seems dead set against capital puniushment from the start, and to sway the reader's favor he stacks the deck a bit with a warm-hearted convicted felon who may potentially be innocent of a heinous crime - so disgusting that I won't share the details here ...more
Dec 26, 2012 rated it liked it
There should have been a warning on the cover of this book that only people interested in American law should try and read it. Half of the time I was struggling to keep myself focused.
There were things that I had no knowledge of before reading it and I was better off without knowing them.
May 19, 2011 rated it did not like it
I really loved Patterson's early books with the characters Christopher and Terri Paget. But this was nothing but a misfire; so boring from start to end that I could barely finish the thing. None of the courtroom shenanigans take place in an actual courtroom, mind you, but at hearings and on conference calls; characters seem to be forever filing petitions instead of actually doing anything interesting or exciting. This may be how the law really works but it doesn't make for compelling reading.

Jan 26, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: mystery, legal
Legal drama at its best. Patterson's books are always so well-researched and insightful that I come away feeling that I've learned something about the subject area, in this case death penalty litigation. There is great depth to his characters as well because he develops different characters in different books but they all inhabit the same fictional universe, so a minor character in one book has a full back story in another. Overall, this was a great book. 4.5 stars.
Mar 23, 2011 rated it it was ok
Shelves: legal-fiction
The characters were outstanding and the plot was good, but neither could make up for the over sell of the author's viewpoint. Instead of over 500 pages, it should have been 250-300. I felt way too many times I was drowning in quicksand. Then suddenly it would get good before back to the boring legal mumble jumble. Patterson needs to take some lessons from Grisham to hold a reader's interest. And Grisham always gets his views over without tiring his reader.
Lisa Thomas
Mar 30, 2008 rated it liked it
bog downs in legalese....
Jul 22, 2017 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jul 14, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Terri, Carlos & Chris Paget are three lawyers working on a last ditch effort to save a man from the death penalty. Like most of the death row inmates he is poor, had inadequate representation and African American. He also may be retarded. Struggling through an unsympathetic court system and a maze of draconian legislation, the family tries to save what they believe is an innocent man. One piece of legislation that is mentioned, the Antiterrorism Effective Death Penalty Act (AEDPA) is real, s ...more
Apr 08, 2008 rated it it was amazing
"I didn't do that little girl" is all Rennell Price has ever said in his own defense. Fifty nine days is how long he has to live - after spending fifteen years on death row for the horrifying sexual assault and murder of nine year old Thuy Sen, whose body was found floating in San Francisco Bay.
Richard North Patterson has a knack for churning out bestsellers that are intensely dramatic and thought provoking. After 12 novels on topics ranging from gun control to late-term abortion to Watergate-st
Aug 19, 2014 rated it really liked it
“Conviction”, our first RN Patterson, is a very tough but quite suspenseful legal thriller. It is all about the death penalty – and makes a strong case, without a lecture per se, for abandoning it. The plot revolves around two brothers, Payton and Rennell, on death row, convicted fifteen years earlier for the brutal and depraved sexual murder of a 9-year-old girl. The exact manner of death was so disturbing that to us it cast a pall over the novel that requires reader effort to put aside to cont ...more
Aug 03, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Against the death penalty much, Mr. Patterson? Like John Grisham in “The Confession,” Patterson crafts a story that makes a case against the death penalty. The Price brothers and a friend are serving time for the sexual assault and murder of a nine-year old neighbor girl. The brothers are sentenced to death and the friend gets off with a plea deal. Fifteen years after the sentencing, Attorney Theresa Paget is tasked with saving one of the brothers, Rennell, from the death penalty. After meeting ...more
Jun 10, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was challenging for me on many levels - I had things happen to me personally when growing up & then began my career working in the legal industry training towards becoming a paralegal until I became disappointed & disheartened with what the legal system had grown to become.

I believe that the law should be about protecting the innocent but due to crafty lawyers with either their own personal/professional agendas, or wallets filled by high paying clients, it's become so stretched and
Aug 01, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: thriller
Un romanzo "difficile". E' questa la prima definizione che mi viene in mente. Non tanto per la narrazione"," deliziosamente scorrevole com'è abitudine di Richard N. Patterson"," bensì per l'argomento trattato. Dopo essersi concentrato sui vari aspetti della politica statunitense dalle primarie in poi"," dopo aver scritto legal thriller incentrati su quelle violenze che spesso e volentieri rimangono nascoste per poi esplodere all'improvviso"," Patterson ha deciso di parlare di uno degli argomenti ...more
Oct 20, 2011 rated it liked it
CONVICTION examines the legal nightmare of the California appeals procedure. In 1987 two brothers were convicted of the brutal rape and murder of a nine year old girl. Their lawyer was cross-addicted to booze and cocaine, but he did offer a defense which was legally adequate. although it was really just good enough to get them executed. Fifteen years later, one brother is executed, and now there is a slim chance that the appeals process can save the other brother.

The brother who remains on death
Nov 22, 2007 rated it really liked it
From a blog post I wrote in 2005:

Richard North Patterson's latest book, Conviction, is an intense look at capital punishment. The protagonist, lawyer Terri Paget, takes on the death row case of Rennell Price. Price is a young black man who was convicted, along with his brother, of killing a 9 year old girl during a sexual assault.

As Paget reviews the evidence, she comes to believe that not only is Rennell innocent, he's also retarded and that fact kept him from ever receiving proper counsel or e
Jul 11, 2012 rated it really liked it
Richard North Patterson did not disappoint with this novel. In addition to educating the reader about the legal system, another of Patterson's strengths is character development. I came to care very much for Rennell, the death row inmate. And I was sickened by the circumstances that contributed to his lot in life. One reader rated this book a "1" because there wasn't much action, too boring, too much paper pushing. Sadly, that's what overturning a death penalty is all about. What I found eye ope ...more
Betsy Ashton
Dec 26, 2014 rated it liked it
Patterson's Conviction is a diatribe against the death penalty played out in conference calls, petitions filed with various courts and visits to a condemned man on death row.

Earlier books featuring Chris and Terri Paget have been fast paced. This one is not. While Patterson makes his case that the death penalty should not be carried out against a mentally retarded man, the way he makes it divided our household.

My husband and I listened to the book on a long car trip during the holidays. He found
Aug 20, 2010 rated it really liked it
This book takes the issue of the death penalty and puts a personal story with it. Of course it's a story with a likable young man trying to avoid his death penalty, and the lawyers who are working on the last minute appeals. It may be slanted, but it is a valid perspective to consider. I discussed this book a lot with my husband, my mother, my kids... a book that got me thinking. Without preaching the author explored this aspect of our legal system and showed some of the inconsistencies in rulin ...more
Kevin Reichelt
Mar 25, 2008 rated it really liked it
A trip through the convoluted world of habeas corpus law and the death penalty ...... Two brothers are charged with, convicted and sentenced to die for the rape and murder of a 9 year old child. Time passes and new evidence comes to light that if introduced at the original trial would have prevented the conviction - or at least never had led to capital punishment for one. The book is written with such legal detail that upon completion you could probably pass a class on Habeas Corpus law. This bo ...more
Michelle (meshe)
Oct 14, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: library-book
This book was very difficult for me to read. It's about a death row inmate and his lawyers attempts to have his execution stayed.
My feelings and thoughts regarding the death penalty have changed over the years. The recent execution in Georgia made me start thinking about it again. I was at the library browsing the shelves and ran across this book. I've read many of RNP''s novels and like his style so I picked this up and started it. It's a difficult subject to read about.
The book follows Renel
Iris Todd-Lewis
Oct 18, 2014 rated it really liked it
An excellent choice for those who love law - particularly the convoluted US justice system. Patterson takes us deeply into the lives of lawyers who work only with those due to be executed and demonstrates the time, effort and multiple layers of appeal, habeas corpus and other strategies used to alter a sentence of death. This one had me reading and hoping, alternately joyful and saddened by the events depicted. I am a staunch advocate of repeal of the death penalty in the US, but see little hope ...more
Aug 19, 2007 rated it really liked it
This isn't your ordinary brain candy. Patterson (Richard North, not James) writes legal thrillers, but legal thrillers with so much detail you might think you're reading a NYTimes article. This one is about capital punishment, and raises lots of issues about the death penalty. Note--not for the squeamish --the crime committed was horrific. What was also terrible, though, was the 15 years from crime to execution. Should the mentally retarded be executed? What degree of retardation matters? How do ...more
Caroline Mcphail-Lambert
Jan 24, 2014 rated it really liked it
Story that can haunt a readers days as thoughts of justice, fairness, equality, history, love, hate, power, violence, truth, lies, control, politics, court, lawyers, legal system, society and oh so much more jockey for moral victory, if that's possible.

Patterson has woven a tale that could be taken from any headlines across the country and will leave this reader pondering the implications for many a day to come.
Jul 02, 2011 rated it it was ok
I can't say I like anything about details of law. I'm not a lawyer, nor did I ever aspire to become one. But apart from all the details of the law procedures, which for me were extremely boring,the book's good. It made me reflect on what it means to be caught up in the something you can't get out of, even though you're innocent, because the law says so.
Stephanie Potts
May 28, 2015 rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Aug 12, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: legal, action, thriller
#4 in the Christopher Paget series.

Christopher Paget series - Terri Paget, post conviction lawyer, tries to halt the execution of Rennell Price, one of two black brothers convicted of killing an Asian girl during a sex crime. As she gets to know him, she becomes convinced he is retarded and innocent, but the clock is ticking. Cameos by President Kilcannon and Chief Justice Carolyn Masters.
Jan 10, 2010 rated it did not like it
really not a worthwhile read.
Mary Cushnie-Mansour
Jun 23, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: books-2017
Richard North Patterson's "Conviction" earned a five-star rating from me. This novel will take you down the road of capital punishment and the law and people who manipulate the system, sometimes not to the letter of the law and the evidence provided or uncovered at later dates, but to their own opinions on what should be or shouldn't be to protect "the system."

There are two main tragedies in this novel: one, the death of an innocent young girl; and two, the conviction of an innocent man, as evid
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Richard North Patterson is the author of fourteen previous bestselling and critically acclaimed novels. Formerly a trial lawyer, Patterson served as the SEC’s liaison to the Watergate special prosecutor and has served on the boards of several Washington advocacy groups dealing with gun violence, political reform, and women’s rights. He lives in San Francisco and on Martha’s Vineyard.
More about Richard North Patterson...

Other Books in the Series

Christopher Paget (4 books)
  • The Lasko Tangent (Christopher Paget, #1)
  • Degree of Guilt (Christopher Paget, #2)
  • Eyes of a Child (Christopher Paget, #3)