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494 pages, Mass Market Paperback
First published November 1, 2005
Retired reporter Stewart Dubinsky last made an appearance in Presumed Innocent (1987). Here, the self-lacerating Dubinsky delves deep into his family's wartime history__one loosely based on Turow's father's experiences. For critics, the question is whether a legal-thriller writer can succeed in another genre__and the answers vary. Out of the courtroom, Turow remains an effective storyteller whose characters (Gita in particular) and details of war create immediacy and intrigue. However, his usual spark seems to be missing. A few critics faulted the novel for introducing too much history, too many mysteries, and too many themes__from war to love to family secrets. In the end, the personal dramas that characterize Turow's best works carry this story-within-a-story, too.
This is an excerpt from a review published in Bookmarks magazine.