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Beyond Reasonable Doubt (Elliot Rook, QC #1)

4.30  ·  Rating details ·  50 ratings  ·  29 reviews
The start of a fantastic new legal series, perfect for fans of Robert Galbraith, written by an acclaimed QC Elliot Rook is the epitome of a highly successful, old-Etonian QC. Or so everyone believes. In fact, he is an ex-petty criminal with a past that he has spent decades keeping secret. Until now... An unidentified young woman of Middle Eastern origin has been found murd ...more
Hardcover, 340 pages
Published June 13th 2019 by Bloomsbury Raven
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4.30  · 
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 ·  50 ratings  ·  29 reviews


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Paromjit
This is the first in a new legal thriller series from Gary Bell, featuring Elliot Rook QC, a barrister at the Miller and Stubbs Chambers, a man with secrets. He has a past that no-one knows about, although the head of chambers, Rupert Stubbs is aware of it. Today he is a man with the right background expected by the professional establishment, apparently an Eton old boy, but all is not as it seems. Rook is a man who dragged himself up from a challenging social environment when he could just as e ...more
Carolyn
This is an excellent start to an exciting new series starring British QC Elliot Rook. Son of a coal miner, Elliot has escaped his impoverished upbringing and put himself through University to become a lawyer, barrister and now a newly minted QC. Most of his Chambers don't know that he comes from a disadvantaged background that he keeps well hidden so when he takes on a mixed race, Doc Marten-wearing pupil who hasn't attended the right school or University, a few eyebrows are raised. But Elliot s ...more
Liz Barnsley
Mar 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing
A really absorbing and brilliantly plotted legal drama from an author who knows his stuff.

Rook is an excellent main protagonist, highly engaging and the courtroom scenes are excellent, encompassing the dryness of the British justice system whilst also being entertainingly unexpected.

An unpredictable finale and some great writing. I'll be reviewing this one in full nearer the June publication date.
Zoé-lee O'farrell
Jun 19, 2019 rated it really liked it

Boy was I am in for a treat with this book! I adore courtroom books, I love the setting and it would have been the second choice of job for me if I had not been caught up in the glitz and glamour of Finance! I love John Grisham books, so I was excited to see if Bell QC lived up to this same expectation I had.

Well, he did! Knowing that some of these events in Beyond Reasonable Doubt is based on Bell and his life experiences and the fact he is also a QC gives this book an added punch. Not only do
...more
Lou
Jun 13, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Beyond Reasonable doubt is the first in a new legal thriller series by acclaimed QC and writer Gary Bell and featuring Elliot Rook QC, a barrister at the Miller and Stubbs chambers. I am always drawn to these stories as a law graduate but well executed, thought-provoking courtroom dramas are as rare as hen's teeth; this is all of that and much, much more. The legal side is authentic and the discussion about the law is accurate — exactly what you'd expect from a lawyer. It's perfectly paced, well ...more
Lel Budge
Jun 11, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: damppebbles
This is the first in a series featuring Elliot Rook QC.

Elliott Rook is a QC with a past that he has kept a secret from his peers

His personal life is a mess, his wife has gone, he drinks and smokes too much but he’s committed to the law. Everyone is entitled to a fair trial.

Talking to a colleague about taking on a junior, they show a lack of respect for any one not from the established background of Eton and privilege……but Rook then meets Zara Barnes and her background reminds him of his own and
...more
Stephanie
Jun 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I enjoy reading legal thrillers and obviously find some better than others. Beyond Reasonable Doubt is definitely one of the better ones that I have read.

Rook is silk and he isn’t like any of the others he works with. He isn’t Eton educated and he has a dubious past that he is determined will stay hidden. When he takes on a junior who is from the area he is brought up in and simultaneously is forced into defending a man from his past it appears that everything will be revealed.

One of the reasons
...more
Karen
Jun 13, 2019 added it
Review to follow for blog tour
Kath
Jun 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Elliot Rook QC is an eminent barrister, working out of a prestige Chambers. He has a hidden, rather sordid past though which he is desperate to keep under wraps. Most of his peers are completely oblivious to the path he took to gain Silk and he likes it this way. Little do they know of his ex-mining town background and the things he did to survive growing up there. When we first meet him he is in the middle of a big fraud case which isn't quite going according to plan and he is trying to get hel ...more
Rachel Bridgeman
Jun 29, 2019 rated it really liked it
This is a book by a man who has seen both sides of the law and it absolutely shows.

A series opener is a tricky thing to pull off,there is the temptation to lay all your cards out on the table yet Gary Bell does this with aplomb. He gives us enough of a backstory on his protaganist, Elliott Rook to whet out appetites, yet takes his time with his 'Rookie', his pupil Zara.

In this, Elliott's first case since winning his silks, he takes on the defence of a criminal who has specifically requested his
...more
William
Jun 27, 2019 rated it really liked it
Action packed and easy to read, this is a perfect summer holiday book. It features barrister-cum-detective Elliot Rook QC and his rookie pupil Zara Barnes.

It affords an insider's view into the criminal justice system. Belmarsh Prison and the villain they visit there are depicted chillingly. The courtroom drama was excellent: witty, pacey and authentic. You'd expect nothing less from a novel co-authored by a practicing QC.

Attempts to deal with contemporary issues such as racial, religious and s
...more
Clair
Jul 03, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2019-reads
An addictive legal thriller from someone who clearly knows what they are talking about…I loved Beyond Reasonable Doubt from start to finish! I am so pleased that this is the first book in a new series so we will be hearing more from Elliot Rook QC.

Rook is a fantastic main character, he’s a bit grumpy, works too hard, in denial about his divorce and definitely drinks to much…I loved him, warts and all! He is a barrister for a prestigious chambers in central London, the epitome of high class. How
...more
Bucks, Books & Beyond
It’s no secret that I absolutely love legal thrillers and anything with a courtroom drama aspect to it so I had a sneaky feeling that I would enjoy this book before I even started it. What intrigued me is that this is the first in the series to feature the lead character Elliot Rook and there is a hole in the market for a good legal series at the moment. Providing this book lived up to my expectations I was really excited at the prospect of finding a new legal series to look forward to!

Elliot R
...more
Kelly Van Damme
May 21, 2019 rated it really liked it
Hi and welcome to my stop on the Beyond Reasonable Doubt blog tour! First of all, thanks so much Emma Welton for the invite on this #damppebblesblogtour and to Raven Books (Bloomsbury) for the e-ARC via NetGalley!

You can try and bury the past as much as you like, but sooner or later, it will come back to bite you in the arse. In Beyond Reasonable Doubt it’s main character Elliot Rook whose past comes knocking and when I say knocking I mean pounding on the door, and it does so in the form of Bill
...more
Soozee
May 08, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Elliot Rook is a QC in London, recently made silk, and is something of a maverick with a lot to hide from his past. He employs a new junior from his home town, Nottingham, much against the wishes of his colleagues, and together they take on the case of a hoodlum from Elliot's past, a vicious character who has blackmailed Elliot into representing him, who is on trial for the nasty murder of a young girl in Cotgrave.

Just when you think everything has been solved, the story takes an unexpected tur
...more
Janice
Jun 27, 2019 rated it it was amazing
The fact that Gary Bell is himself a QC contributes to this being an excellent description of the British justice system with all its intricacies laid bare. One can’t help but compare this to the many courtroom and legal dramas, on both our shelves and screens and I for one find all of it truly fascinating. It’s something that draws you in, wraps itself around you and will only let go once you’ve discovered that evidence, uncovered that last clue, solved that crime and heard the verdict declared ...more
Kate Avery
Jun 25, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: favourites-2019
Rating 4.5/5

I can’t quite believe how absorbing this book was, I picked it up and then a couple of hours later I had it finished, I haven’t done that in a while so I was pleasantly surprised.

I think what really got me hooked was finding out more about Elliot Rook. I suppose there is a kind of assumption that you make with most people in his position that he will have followed a certain path to be in the position that he is in, I found it really interesting discovering his background and how that
...more
Bigfatbookworm
Jul 04, 2019 rated it really liked it
A cracking start to a new series! Elliot Rook is the barrister with a past, born into a coal mining family (go on lad! (Yorkshire bird here)), he has brought himself up through the ranks to become a QC. He's flawed, his marriage has collapsed, he drinks and smokes too much and he has a murky past. I do love a damaged lead.

Of course, something will come along and threaten to totally mess things up for him. That thing is Billy Barber; accused of murdering a young woman, Billy blackmails Elliot int
...more
Lel Budge
Jun 11, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is the first in a series featuring Elliot Rook QC.

Elliott Rook is a QC with a past that he has kept a secret from his peers

His personal life is a mess, his wife has gone, he drinks and smokes too much but he’s committed to the law. Everyone is entitled to a fair trial.

Talking to a colleague about taking on a junior, they show a lack of respect for any one not from the established background of Eton and privilege……but Rook then meets Zara Barnes and her background reminds him of his own and
...more
Anne
Jul 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This is the first book in a new legal thriller series featuring Elliot Rook. Mr Rook is a highly successful, well respected QC in London. He is an old Etonian of high standards, but is he ? Rook is actually an ex petty criminal with a colourful past which he has worked hard to keep secret.
Suddenly from Rook's past, Billy Barbour appears. Billy has been accused of murdering a young woman and is insisting that Rook represents him, or he will reveal his past to all. Rook is in a corner and reluctan
...more
Bookinggoodread
Jun 13, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Beyond Reasonable Doubt is the first in a new series featuring QC Elliot Rook, and what a cracking book to kick off a new series with! Gary Bell has written a legal thriller that I throughly enjoyed and couldn't put down. From the characters to the plot the entire book is written so well and I was immersed in the story. I loved all the courtroom drama and reading about QC's and how they work was fascinating.
Rook has tried desperately to forget about his troubled and humble upbringing. He has le
...more
Noemi Proietti
Jun 21, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I do love court room drama so I was really intrigued by the blurb of BEYOND REASONABLE DOUBT and once I started reading it I couldn’t stop. The protagonist of the novel is Elliott Rook, a respected QC with a troubled past that risk to come to light if he doesn’t accept to defend Billy Barber, an old acquaintance, accused of brutally murdering a young unidentified woman. With the help of his new bright and resourceful junior assistant (his Rookie), Zara Barnes, Elliott sets off to prove Billy’s i ...more
Alison Eden
Jul 14, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
#BeyondReasonableDoubt #NetGalley A great start to a new series involving Elliot Rook QC and his new junior Zara Barnes. Reminiscent of the Cormoran Strike novels this was every bit as entertaining and by the end of the book I had warmed to the two main characters. A fair bit of descriptive writing which is inevitable at the start of a new series but when the action came it was gripping and mesmerizing. Great to see from a different perspective than the more common detective thrillers, I look fo ...more
Alison Eden
Jul 14, 2019 rated it really liked it
#BeyondReasonableDoubt #NetGalley A great start to a new series involving Elliot Rook QC and his new junior Zara Barnes. Reminiscent of the Cormoran Strike novels this was every bit as entertaining and by the end of the book I had warmed to the two main characters. A fair bit of descriptive writing which is inevitable at the start of a new series but when the action came it was gripping and mesmerizing. Great to see from a different perspective than the more common detective thrillers, I look fo ...more
Greville Waterman
Apr 29, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I enjoyed this as I am a sucker for a good legal thriller and this certainly is one. I tis the first in a new series featuring Rook, a barrister who is not who he seems to be and is intent on guarding the secret of his past.

Things get complicated when he is asked to defend a criminal who threatens to expose him.

The book has been written by a lawyer and is therefore accurate and credible.

A good start to an exciting new series.

Jay Dwight
Jun 11, 2019 rated it liked it
3.5 stars

Haven't read a legal thriller for a while and this is an entertaining read.

Elliot Rook is certainly an interesting lead character. A QC, but with an unscrupulous past that he likes to keep hidden. Effectively blackmailed due to his desire to keep those secrets, he takes on a murder case, defending an shady character from his earlier life. His rookie sidekick Zara provides an interesting contrast.
Andy Wormald
Apr 22, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Elliot Rook has recently made Silk, however his colleagues are not fully aware of his background and upbringing

When Rook is hired to defend Barber a man he knows only too well, against murder, his instinct is to say no, unfortunately Barber knows Rooks background and threatens to expose him to his colleagues, a move which could cost Rook everything. Rook enlists the Help of Zara state school educated and already turned down by his colleagues, however Rook sees something in her and together they
...more
Katherine Tyrrell
rated it it was amazing
Jul 01, 2019
MARGARET MURRAY
rated it it was amazing
Jun 28, 2019
Joanna Beesley
May 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is the first in the series of Elliot Rook, Q.C. novels and the first time I have read Gary Bell. What a brilliant read it turned out to be.

Elliot Rook is a Q.C. and takes on a new Pupil, Zara Barnes. Elliott has a background he wishes to hide and has spent many years lying and covering up where he is from and what he has been involved with.

A well known criminal who has spent time in prison for hate crimes along with other aggressive acts is charged with the murder of a young girl, unknown,
...more
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